The common heritage will be explored first in order to discern the connection between these geographically distinct groups. A comparison across cultures will be made for various cultural aspects such as language, religion, society etc. This will aid in discerning how well preserved the Diaspora cultures are in respect to the original culture.
HISTORICAL CONNECTION AND ORIGINS
The origins of the Irish Travellers have been mired in mystery. Myriad theories and ideas exist as to the origin of the travellers. (Helleiner, 2003) Most scholars hold that the Travellers descended from landowners and labourers who were persecuted by Oliver Cromwell during his military campaign in Ireland. The numbers are speculated to have increased as the famines of the 1840’s forced more settled Irish people to join the ranks of the travellers. Another alternative theory sees the Travellers as a mix of Scottish Travellers and certain other gypsies from England from somewhere around the 1600’s. An even older view persists that the Irish Travellers are derivatives of nomadic groups that roamed Ireland as far back as the 5th century. By the 12th century these nomads assumed the names of “Tynkler” and “Tynker”. (O Riain, 2008) A unified social system is seen to have emerged but the exact details of such a social system remain sketchy. ...Show more