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England and Ireland



  • Ireland was converted to Christianity by St. Patrick, the patron saint of the country.

  • In the 12th Century, Ireland was presented to Henry II of England by Pope Adrian IV, the Emperor of all Christendom.

  • And so, from Henry II- Henry VIII, the king of England was called Lord of Ireland.

  • Some famous English men like Edmund Spenser and Sir Walter Raliegh owned big plantations in Ireland.

  • The Faerie Queene was written by Edmund Spenser in his estate at Kilcolnman, Ireland.

Protestants in Ireland:

  • Ireland was a Roman Catholic country and so the people hated Protestants.

  • Queen Elizabeth in order to resort killed many natives.

  • James I made arrangements for the English and Scot Protestants to settle in Ireland. He drove the natives from Ulster and gave it to them.

  • After the execution of Charles I, Ireland supported Charles II. Oliver Cromwell took revenge by conquering the entire country in 1649.

How was Ireland conquered by England?

  • James II, the displaced monarch of England was welcomed by the Roman Catholic Ireland.

  • William the successor of James II was provoked and waged war against Ireland.

  • On 1st July 1690, William won at the Battle of the Boyne.

  • Thus, England conquered Ireland and imposed supremacy against the people’s will.

  • The Catholics who supported James II were deprived of their lands and rights.

  • For the next hundred years only the Protestants were allowed to rule the country.


  • Towards the end of the French Revolution the United Irishmen Society was formed.

  • Their aim is to fight for the inclusion of men of all creeds in the Irish Parliament. (because the Catholics had the right to vote and be elected but was not allowed inside Parliament.)

  • In 1768, a rebellion took place but was controlled within few days.


  • William Pitt the Younger, the then Prime Minister got the idea of united all the three countries parliaments together as one. (England, Scotland and Ireland)

  • The Catholics supported and the Protestants were bribed to support.

  • The Act of Union was passed in 1800.

  • Ireland was represented to be in The House of Commons by 100 elected members. In the House of Lords by 28 elected members.

  • The Protestant church of Ireland was joined with England and was called as The United Church of England and Ireland.


  • William Pitt understood the state of Catholics in Ireland.

  • To fulfill his promise of destroying old rules, he drew the Catholic Emancipation Bill in Parliament.

  • Which was refused to sanction by George III as that was against his oaths.

  • Pitt resigned and once again the problems of Catholics remain unsolved.

  • The first Irish Lawyer and patriot Daniel O’Connell was not allowed to be in Parliament just because he was a Catholic though he was elected by a majority.

  • After a long time, in 1829 the Catholic Emancipation Act was passed and so the Catholics were permitted to sit in Parliament.


  • There was a frequent failure in the Potato crop and in particular famine was there between 1845 and 1846.

  • There were frequent riots and agitations.

  • The few peasants who lived in the country left.

  • About 2 and a half million natives left to United States.

  • People disliked land lords.

  • In short the security of life has been lost.


  • William Gladstone was the first Englishman to realise that the solution for all the riots is granting the Home Rule.

  • In 1886- the Home Rule Bill was introduced in Parliament but was defeated by votes.

  • The Home Rule Bill introduced in 1893 was again defeated.

  • Asquith introduce the same bill for the third time and in vain.

  • At last it was passed in 1914 but at this time the Protestants from Ulster opposed and so the act was suspended of the time being


  • An Irish political party called “Sinn Finn”- was created to make Ireland Republic and so they were known as the Irish Republic Army.

  • In 1916- a rebellion broke.

  • In order to stop this rebellion the state police and the special force together formed a team named “Black and Tans”.

  • The ensuring election of 1918 paved way for the Sinn Finn to get 70 seats in the Parliament but they refused to sit there and created a new assembly named “Dail Eireann”

  • They went to Paris for the Peace Conference but Ireland’s freedom was denied.


  • For the next two years the enemy parties terrorised Ireland.

  • On 2nd December 1921, an agreement was reached thereby the country was divided.

  • The six countries of Ulster in the North obtained a parliament yet remained a part of the United Kingdom.

  • The Southern Ireland became the Free State like Canada.

  • The Extremists headed by De Valera wanted Ireland completely free from England and so the rebellion continued.

  • The Extremists won and in 1930 Earnon De Valera, President of Ireland declared by force the free state of Ireland with full-fledged Republic called “Eire”.


Social History of England by Louise Creighton

An Introduction to the Social History of England by A.G.Xavier

A Short History of Social Life in England by M B Synge

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