13 Surprising Irish Celebrities

Alicia Keys? Barack Obama? Ben Stiller? Yes, yes, and yes.
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 17, 2010 10:43 AM CDT
13 Surprising Irish Celebrities
Barack Obama: Yes, it’s Obama, not O’Bama. Nevertheless, the president has an Irish great-great-great-grandfather.   (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

Lots of celebrities are likely to be celebrating St. Patrick’s Day tonight—but you might be surprised to discover which of them actually have Irish roots. The Daily Beast lists 13 you might not expect:

  1. Barack Obama: Yes, it’s Obama, not O’Bama. Nevertheless, the president has an Irish great-great-great-grandfather.
  2. Christina Aguilera: She’s known more for her Ecuadorian roots and Latin rhythms, but her mom is Irish.

  1. Harrison Ford: As Adam Sandler noted in “The Chanukah Song,” he is part Jewish—and half Irish.
  2. Alicia Keys: She’s black, Italian, Scottish, and a teensy bit Irish.
  3. Ben Stiller: Known as—as Time magazine once put it—a “big Jew,” he’s actually half Irish.
  4. John Travolta: He always seems to play Italian guys—and his dad is Italian—but his mom was Irish and he grew up with Irish traditions.
  5. John Stamos: He played a Greek on Full House and he really is half Greek, but Uncle Jesse's character was almost named Adam Cochran—and his mom is Irish.
  6. Janeane Garofalo: The half-Irish comedian got in touch with her roots in 1997’s The Matchmaker, set in Ireland.
Click here for the complete list.
(Read more St. Patrick's Day stories.)

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