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Dáil Éireann debate -
Tuesday, 23 Jul 1935

Vol. 58 No. 9

Committee on Finance. - Vote 49—Science and Art.

I move:—

Go ndeontar suim Bhreise ná raghaidh thar £75 chun íoctha an Mhuirir a thiocfaidh chun bheith iníoctha i rith na bliana dar críoch an 31adh lá de Mhárta, 1936, chun Tuarastail agus Costaisí na bhFundúireachtai Eolaíochta agus Ealadhan agus Illdeontaisí-o-gCabhair, etc.

That a Supplementary sum not exceeding £75 be granted to defray the Charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending 31st March, 1936, for the Salaries and Expenses of the Institutions of Science and Art and sundry Grants-in-Aid, etc.

This is an Estimate for a sum not exceeding £75 towards the expenses incurred in connection with the racial survey of Ireland which is being conducted at present as part of the series of researches undertaken in this country under the auspices of Harvard University.

The racial survey is being made by Dr. C. W. Du Pertuis, to whom the University authorities have assigned the work of field anthropometrist in charge of the collection of physical data relating to the people of this country. In this racial survey the Harvard University Expedition plans to gather adequate samples of anthropometric records pertaining to the population of every county. With the physical information certain sociological facts will also be acquired. The ultimate aim of the racial survey is not only to establish the various ethnic strata in the population of this country, but also to correlate this information with the studies of social anthropology which have been made in County Clare and elsewhere by members of the Harvard Expedition, and with the archæological findings which are being made by the staff of excavators who are working in selected districts under the direction of Dr. O'Neill Hencken and other skilled archæologists attached to the Expedition.

The Department of Education has been assured by the University authorities that it is their intention to produce not only a number of monographs dealing with the social anthropology, physical anthropology, and archæology of Ireland, but also to attempt some general work which will purport to be in the nature of a scientific interpretation of the pre-history and history of the Irish nation.

The purpose of the proposed grant of the sum of £75 is to enable Dr. Du Pertuis to hire, in the various places where he is working, local assistants who will be of use in rounding up the population for his anthropometric studies. In some areas the local assistant will be required to act as interpreter.

The various investigations and researches which are being conducted in this country at the expense of the University are of very considerable national and scientific importance, and the Government is satisfied that the proposed grant of £75 towards meeting the expenses of the special work assigned to Dr. Pertuis will ensure that the work of this investigator will be fully extended.

Vote put and agreed to.