Romani Studies

Gypsies and sixteenth-century Ireland

Romani Studies (2014), 24, (2), 203–210.

Abstract

This article presents and discusses evidence of Gypsy interaction with sixteenth-century Ireland. It shows that, although it is probable that there was no permanent Gypsy settlement on the island at this time, connections between Gypsies and Ireland nevertheless existed. Responding in particular to the work of Gypsy historian Sir Angus Fraser, the article amends Fraser's suggested date for the earliest reference to Gypsies in Irish historical sources, and adds fresh detail to his findings on relations between Gypsies and the state in pre-modern times. The article reveals that, as in other European territories, the state authorities in Ireland combined benevolence and intolerance in its dealings with Gypsy newcomers.

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Author details

Power, Gerald