In the aftermath of the Battle of Kinsale in 1601 as many as 10,000 Irish emigrated from Ireland to Galicia in the rth-west of Spain. Between 1601 and 1608 the brunt of this immigration fell on the city of La Coruna, which became a virtual encampment of starving homeless Irish bles, soldiers, women, children, elderly and poor. This is the story of that community and how its members adapted to their new circumstances, and how they themselves, their social structures and beliefs were transformed by their immigrant experience. Through an examination of the community across a broad range of social cultural aspects such as family, literacy, material culture, the acquisition of hours, religious sentiment, and social ascent, important new insights into Irish socio-cultural history have been uncovered.
Ciaran O'Scea is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the John Hume Institute for Global Irish Studies at University College Dublin