The Brian Boru Harp

President Mary McAleese

The Ireland Canada Monument was born in May 2005 during the historic visit of Her Excellency President of Ireland, Mary McAleese to Vancouver.

The Ireland Canada Monument Society was registered as a non-profit Society in Victoria British Columbia in June 2010.

In 2012, a site for the Monument at Thornton Park Vancouver was dedicated by Vancouver Parks Board.

ICM ISO May 1 2012

The proposed Ireland Canada Monument to be built at Thornton Park Vancouver
Note: The Central column will be revised to a lower height of 6′-0″ (1800mm) as per agreement with Parks Board.


The Central Column of the Monument will include an engraving of The Brian Ború

The original Brian Boru harp is located at Trinity College Library Dublin Ireland.

The harp, an ancient instrument, believed by some to have found its way into Europe through Ireland, became the instrument of choice of the early Christian Missionaries and Medieval Irish bards.  The bards were the means of uniting the people of Ireland by the communication of events, news, and knowledge.

In this manner the harp became an unofficial symbol of freedom for Ireland. What is known as the Irish harp was a large instrument with a wide sound box, a distinctively curved front pillar and metal strings.  A wonderful example of an early Irish harp is the harp at Trinity College, which is sometimes referred to as the ‘Brian Boru’ harp.  This harp has been widely used as the base for the design of the harps used on Irish coins, emblems, and government stationary.  


 The Brian Boru Harp

Banríon an Cheoil     (The Queen of Music.)

The Making of a wooden harp. Nollaig Brolly is a harpist whose big ambition is to play the style of harp that featured at the last gathering of harpists in 1792 Belfast. The program is a recording from TG4 in Ireland and provides a wonderful insight into the making of the harp from its beginnings as a tree to its completion as the builders fine tune the strings for playing. Much of the recording is in Gaelic with subtitles for those who may have little knowledge of the language. Enjoy.

Patrick Byrne : The Last Blind Harper –

LMFM Producer Maria Harmon looks back at the intriguing story of Patrick Byrne, the forgotten harper whom only several years ago people knew very little of, now we are opened up to a wealth of knowledge from many experts in their field. Maria speaks with local Co.Louth historian Micheál McKeown, Master of local history from N.U.I Maynooth, Micheál McDermott, Honourary Secretary of the Historical Harp Society of Ireland Simon Chadwick and the society’s Chairperson Siobhán Armstrong and also Finian McCluskey from the annual Féile Patrick Byrne committee in Carrickmacross. Incidentally, the Pen & Ink Drawing was by Michael McKeown from Blackrock, Co. Louth.