Non-Fiction Books:

The History and Topography of Ireland



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The History and Topography of Ireland by Gerald of Wales
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Geraldus de Barri, called Cambrensis from Cambris (Wales), the country of his birth, was a member of one of the leading Norman families involved in the invasion of Ireland. He visited Ireland first in 1183 and later returned in the entourage of Henry II. His "Topographia Hiberniae" is an account of Ireland and its early history as seen by a Norman in 1185 CE. The book is divided into three parts. The first part treats of the position of Ireland; the lakes and their islands; the birds and the fish that are missing and those that are not found elsewhere; the fact that no poisonous reptiles are found and those that are brought immediately die or lose their poison. The second part treats of the wonders and miracles of Ireland: the island where no one dies, and where no women can go; the whirlpool of the sea that swallows ships; the stone that contains wine; that the saints of Ireland seem to be of a vindictive cast of mind. The third part describes the inhabitants of the country.

Author Biography

Gerald of Wales was born c.1145 in Pembrokeshire. He died in obscurity, possibly in Lincoln in 1223. He wrote seventeen books, all of them in Latin, and was well-connected to the Royal Family of his day.
Release date NZ
September 30th, 1982
Translated by John O'Meara
Country of Publication
United Kingdom
illustrations, maps
Penguin Classics
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