JFK Saw Irish Language Revival as ‘A Waste of National Efforts’

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tags: John F. Kennedy, Irish history, Eamon De Valera

John F Kennedy may have been welcomed in Irish when he landed at Dublin Airport in 1963, but the US president thought Éamon de Valera’s efforts to revive the language were “a waste of national effort”.

Kennedy later changed his view and was regularly heard chatting “as Gaeilge” to an Irish nanny employed by the family of his brother, Ted.

Dr Brian Murphy, a lecturer at Technological University Dublin, said Kennedy expressed his disapproval of the language revival effort during discussions with Seán Lemass, then taoiseach, in Ireland in 1963.

Murphy, who is joint author of a new book on the Kennedy legacy, published these latest findings on the Tuairisc.ie Irish language website.

Read entire article at Times (UK)