21 June-Jean-Paul Sartre

Jean-Paul Sartre was a native of France. He was an author, philosopher and literary critic. He was one of the leading philosophers of the 20th century and one of the main figures in the philosophy of existentialism. His most famous plays include Les Mouches (The Flies) and Huis Clos (No Exit). Sartre was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1964 but he refused to accept it.

Jean-Paul Sartre, author, philosopher and literary critic was born in Paris, France in the year 1905 On This Day.

Jean-Paul Sartre, painted portrait

Sartre and de Beauvoir




20 June-John A Costello

John A Costello was a politician who served two terms as Taoiseach (Prime Minister) of Ireland between 1948 and 1957. During his time as Taoiseach Ireland was declared a republic and the economy improved. Bodies such as the Industrial Development Authority and the Board of Trade were established. Projects such as rural electrification was accelerated.

John Aloysius Costello was born in Dublin in 1891. Having qualified as a barrister he was appointed Attorney General in 1926. He was first elected to Dáil Éireann in 1932. He was elected at each subsequent election until his retirement from politics in 1969. Following his retirement he resumed his career as a barrister.

John A Costello, who served two terms as Taoiseach (Prime Minister) of Ireland between 1948 and 1957, was born in the year 1891 On This Day.

US visit of Taoiseach Costello in 1956 (cropped).jpg

John A Costello

20 June-James Clarence Mangan

James Clarence Mangan was a poet who was a native of Dublin. He is considered to be one of the greatest poets of the nineteenth century. He is best known for poems such as ‘My Dark Rosaleen’ and ‘Woman of Three Cows’. His gravestone in Glasnevin Cemetery in Dublin proclaims him to be ‘Ireland’s National Poet’.

James Clarence Mangan was born in Fishamble Street Dublin on May 1st 1803. He was educated locally and studied at least three foreign languages including, German, French and Spanish. During his lifetime he worked in various jobs including as a clerk in a law office, with Ordnance Survey of Ireland and in the Library of Trinity College Dublin. His first publications, which were translations from German appeared in 1830. Most of his later works were published in the ‘Nation’ newspaper. He died of cholera in Mercer’s Hospital Dublin in 1849.

James Clarence Mangan author of poems such as ‘Dark Rosaleen’ and ‘Woman of Three Cows’, died of cholera in Mercer’s Hospital, Dublin in the year 1849 On This Day.

Memorial bust of Mangan in St. Stephen’s Green, sculpted by Oliver Sheppard

Image taken from page 6 of ‘James Clarence Mangan; his selected poems

19 June-First Female Astronaut

Valentina Tereshkova was a Russian cosmonaut. In 1963 she became the first woman in history to go into space. She spent almost three days in space piloting the Vostok 6 spacecraft. She orbited the Earth 48 times. Following her mission Tereshkova was honoured with the title Hero of the Soviet Union.

Valentina Tereshkova was born on March 6, 1937 in Bolshoye Maslennikovo, a village about 275km north of Moscow. She was chosen for the women-in-space programme from over 400 applicants because of her expertise as a parachutist. Following training Tereshkova was launched into space from Baikonur Cosmodrome in southern Kazakhstan on June 16th 1963.

Together with operating the spacecraft Tereshkova maintained a flight log and took photographs. During the mission she spoke with Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev. She spent 2 days, 22 hours and 50 minutes in space.

Valentina Tereshkova, the first woman to have flown in space, returned safely to earth in the year 1963 On This Day.

Valentina Tereshkova

Valentina Tereshkova and Sergei Krikalev