Water of Life

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Water of Life
The Irish Uisce Beatha

The Irish in the medieval times developed (some would say perfected) a technique for distilling grains of barley. The concoction was so good that the Irish named the drink 'Uisce Beatha', which literally means 'water of life'. The phrase is pronounced 'oo-ISS-key BAH-ha'.

When the English arrived in Ireland, they loved it as well and it became one of Ireland's most profitable exports. The English shortened the name, though: they dropped the 'Beatha' and said the first word rapidly, as if only two syllables. It came out 'whis-key'. Thus the source of the English word 'whiskey' the water of life!

The photograph was taken by Linda McDonnell at the Bushmills Distillery, County Antrim, Northern Ireland.

Click here Discover Northern Ireland or here Bushmills.com to visit (virtually) Bushmills Distillery.