The harp of Ireland
We know that the symbol of Ireland is a left-facing harp, but why is it positioned that way?
To find out this curious fact we have to go back to 1862 when the Guiness beer giant registered the harp as its official logo, long before the Irish state existed (it was formed in 1922).
When the Irish state wanted to register the harp as the official state logo, it couldn’t as it had been registered for Guiness before, so it had to change the orientation of the harp.
The harp remains the official national emblem of the Republic of Ireland and was printed on the Republic’s first currency, the Irish pound, which was replaced by the euro in 2002.
Why is the harp the symbol of Ireland?
There are remains that this instrument was used as early as the 8th century and in fact the oldest harp is called “Brian Boru’s harp” and is exhibited in the Great Room (Long Room) of the Library of Trinity College in Dublin.
On the other hand, the harp is a very important instrument in Irish music and harpists had great importance during Celtic times with a prominent position within the social scale.