Rude and Nude in Ireland

Rude Names, Naked Bodies, and All That in Ireland?

Queen Maeve - a very rude nude in Dublin, displaying her female form without a stitch of clothing, and not even using that bull's head to protect her modesty! Careful now ...
••• Queen Maeve - a very rude nude in Dublin, displaying her female form without a stitch of clothing, and not even using that bull's head to protect her modesty! Careful now ... © Bernd Biege 2014

Ireland in the nude, and rude Ireland – is this really a thing? Because we all know that the Irish are ever so friendly, generally speaking. And that Ireland, as a Catholic (or, in the North, Presbyterian) country is, on the whole, not given to wanton carnality, fornication, and shameless displays of the body. But ... you can still get your Ireland nude and rude. Well, to be blunt: it is possible, but only in roundabout ways at times.

And with some insider knowledge.

Don't fret, gentle reader, this is not the guide to orgies, insults, and bad behavior generally (to experience that, a sunny weekend in Temple Bar might be the best place, truth be told). This article is an almost random collection of Irish rudeness and nudity. From art to skinny-dipping, from Muff to the Demon's Testicles. With some helpful hints added ...

Nude Beaches in Ireland?

To be quite honest, officially there are none. As in zero, zilch, nix. Because Ireland on the whole still has not developed a wholesome attitude to the human body on display. And the line between having a topless dip in the water (or getting a seamless tan on the beach) and being dragged into court for causing public offence is a thin (and not quite defined) one. The general consensus: nudity in public is forbidden in Ireland, nudist beaches are never officially sanctioned.

Yet here it is - the short guide to nudism in Ireland.

Strip off at your own peril! At the end of the day, it is all about how you behave – a topless sunbath in a secluded location may raise the occasional eyebrow, overt displays of sexual behavior will certainly lead to the Guards or the PSNI making an appearance.

Public Nudity in Dublin

Having said that ...

even without a bona fide nude beach on all the island, you can enjoy some very in-yer-face displays of public nudity in Dublin. Because it is art. Not only did some Irish lassies become famous for being very unclothed (witness La Belle Morphise and Le Sommeil, probably even the highly controversial L’Origine du monde), but the capital is also host to a number of (mostly female) nudes.

For a different aspect of Dublin, have a good look at some nudity in artworks. Though at least one underwent a sex change. As a naked male bum is certainly much more controversial than that of a female … in some people’s eyes.

Rude Place Names of Ireland

You might want to send a postcard home from Dicksboro, Doodys Bottoms, Fartrim, Lousybush, or even Nobber - that'll guarantee a few titters and admonishing glances. But how about telling your ageing maiden aunt that you are now a fully paid up member of the Muff Diving Club, and have the t-shirt (as well as membership card) to prove it? And maybe bring her a bit of Effin Cheese as a souvenir?

Indeed, Ireland has some very rude place names. Though, to be honest, none are as famous as that small Austrian village that shall not be named here ...

On the other hand: while declaring proudly that you climbed onto the Devil's Mother while holidaying in Ireland might raise an eyebrow.

But just imagine you actually knew that the Irish name "Magairlí an Deamhain" (a hill in Connemara) had been mistranslated. And that the round, rocky surface you were trampling on actually were ... the Demon's Testicles?

So check out the strangest place names in Irish, often not translated for obvious reasons. Or would you like the skipper of a tour boat to direct your gaze towards the Dead Man's Penis?

On a More Serious Note

Now for something completely different, yet closely related in theme - sex in Ireland, having it, as a tourist. If you got all excited by the stuff above, you may well be up for some hanky-panky during your travels. And not necessarily with the person(s) you are travelling with.

So, to round off our short survey of nude and rude Ireland, here are some articles you should consider reading if you plan to be sexually active on an Irish vacation:

The most important things a tourist might want to know about sex in Ireland can be found in a separate article. The gist of which is “basically behave like a normal person”, if you need a short version. Ireland’s laws regarding sex are “Western standard”.

Another important question is whether you can get contraceptives in Ireland. The pill and condoms are generally available, and even emergency contraception can be bought over the counter, if things go wrong. Just take note that condoms might be a good idea in any case, as STDs are on the rise over here …