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History of Ireland
Transcript of History of Ireland
AGE OF INVASION
Ireland was shaped by many different cultures.
The real Irish people are Gaelic and Catholic.
The first settlers in Ireland came from Europe over 10,000 years ago.
They lived as nomads and were hunters.
In 800 BC, the Celts arrived in Ireland.
The Roman Invasion
The Romans wanted to add Ireland's rich and fertile land to their already huge empire. However, they did not conquer the country but only traded with it. They created the first map of Ireland.
Clonycavan Man is a Celt from 300 BC whose body was preserved after his death due to special soil in Ireland. He was probably a failed king and got killed. In his hair parts of pine resin were found, which was a product from the Mediterranean. This means that the Celts were trading with that region.
Newgrange is a prehistoric monument built by the Celts which is even older than Stonehenge and the Pyramids.
Christiantity is one core part of Irish identity. It was brought to Ireland by St. Patrick in the 5th century
He was 14 years old when he came to Ireland as a slave. After becoming a bishop, he started to convert kings to Christianity. St. Patrick used the shamrock to explain the Holy Trinity and banished all snakes (which are a symbol for paganism) from the island.
Today, St.Patrick's Day is celebrated on 17 March.
Columbanus was an Irish monk who lived in the 6th century. He opened a monastery called Annegray which attracted a large number of people and he built one of the biggest libraries in the Middle Ages.
Age of the Vikings
In the 8th century, the Vikings came to Ireland from Norway. They attacked monasteries and plundered the food there. The Irish saw them as rapists and killers.
In the 9th century, they started to build fixed settlements on the island. One of these settlements became the capital city Dublin.
King Brian (or Brian Boru of Dál Cais in County Clare) was the first national hero of Ireland because he defeated the Vikings of Munster in the 10th century. His soldiers won the Battle of Clontarf on Good Friday. Unluckily, Brian was killed.
AGE OF UNION
"From the 1st of January 1801 and forever after Britain and Ireland shall be known as one Kingdom -
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland!"
He brought the Catholic church into Irish politics in 1823 and mobilised people to emancipate.
In 1828 he was the first Catholic in parliament in Great Britain.
He wanted the Act of Union - he wanted one country ruled from London by the Catholics.
The Great Famine
The potato blight made the potatoes black and therefore inedible.
In 1846 the first people died because of the famine. Lord John Russel, Prime Minister of Great Britain, said that saving the starving people was not the job of Great Britain but the job of local landlords and charity.
Skibbereen was the most affected area. By 1847, around 10,000 people had died because of hunger. The British said "God has sent the famine to teach the Irish a lesson" and did not help the starving country. The famine lasted for 5 years, over 1,000,000 people died.
AGE OF NATIONS
At the beginning of 20th century the world was dominated by the British Empire. Ireland was still united, but the unity was not perfect. An Irish Catholic, for instance, would never rise to a top position.
1913 Strike and Lockout
Unskilled workers were living in poverty. James Larkin and James Connolly supported them, encouraging them to organise an all-out strike. The strike was eventually suppressed by State Power and the Catholic business elite; workers had to surrender.
a concept that would recreate a Kingdom of Ireland with its own parliament
A try to pass such a bill in 1912 provoked the anger of Ulster protestants who wanted to sustain the union.
Edward Carson helped to establish the Ulster Unionist Party with the Ulster Volunteers as its "army".
On the other hand, there were the Irish Volunteers that fought for Irish independence.
1916: Easter Rising
During the First World War, Home Rule was suspended, which offended Irish nationalists. The leaders of different nationalist movements gathered in Dublin and struck on Easter Monday (April 24).
They took over the General Post Office and declared the Independence of Ireland. Bitter street fighting developed until Pearse (nationalist leader) surrendered. The leaders of the Rising were sentenced to death.
Irish War of Independence
Sinn Féin, a radical nationalist party, won the 1918 election. They set up an Irish Republic. The IRA (Irish Republican Army) waged a guerrilla war against British rule in Ireland.
After two years of war, the Anglo-Irish Treaty was signed in December 1921. It brought about a new country called the Irish Free State, which consisted of the 26 counties of Southern Ireland. They had their own army but had to swear allegiance to the British Crown. The six protestant counties of Ulster became a new state within the UK.
Second World War
During the Second World War, the Irish Free State remained neutral (at least officially). The northern part was deeply involved in the war.
After the war, Ireland was inward-looking and poor.
Civil Rights Movement
The Northern Ireland Civil Rights Association (NICRA) was founded in 1967. Its goal was to end seven 'injustices' such as discrimination against Catholics or the 'weighted' voting system.
Initially peaceful civil rights marches eventually descended into violence.
The economy went from stagnation to growth. "Celtic Tiger" is the nickname for Ireland during its boom years of the late 1990s.
Soon corruption and bribe were the order of the day and led to a financial catastrophe in 2008. Prices collapsed and thousands were forced to emigrate.
Good Friday Agreement
Signed in 1998, the Good Friday Agreement is a major political development in the Northern Ireland peace process. It defines the status of Northern Ireland within the United Kingdom and the relationship between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland as well as issues relating to civil and cultural rights, decommissioning of weapons, justice and policing.
Because of the Great Famine the Irish people emigrated to different countries. In the 1850s more Irishmen were living in New York City than in Dublin. They were poor in their new habitat but gained wealth by working hard.
The Fenians were a revolutionary group founded in the US and Ireland. Those people were Irishmen who had fought in the US civil war and would go against Britain whenever it was possible. In 1867 the first acts of Irish terrorism in Britain were carried out by the Fenians. Those acts inspired future revolutionists.
When the British Prime Minister Charles Gladstone (who wanted Ireland to become a free and independent country, he was inspired by Charles Parnell) lost votes in the British Parliament (also the Protestants living in the Irish province Ulster were against an independent Ireland) a rumor spread at Alexandra Dock that Catholics had attacked an Orangeman.
Hundreds of shipyard workers were streaming across the road to beat the Catholics. The Catholic workers even jumped into the river in order to not be beaten up by the Protestants. In the evening the riots had spread across Belfast.
War in South Africa
The war in South Africa was carried out between the poor Irish workers who wanted more rights and the British colonies in South Africa. The best known battle is the Battle Of Colenso. Around 150 men died, 800 were wounded.
After 24 years, King Charles I. was executed in January 1649. He was replaced by Oliver Cromwell, who started to fight Derry. His army destroyed the infrastructure of Ireland and killed thousands of civilians.
At the end of the 1650s only 15% of the Irish land remained in Irish hands.
In 1688 James II. son was born. As he was Catholic, protestants were against him and asked William of Orange (Prince of the Dutch Republic) to become the new king of England.
James went to France to ask Louis 14th for military help. In 1689 they arrived in England with 1200 French groups.
On 12 July 1689 W. of Orange defeated James, who had to flee and lost Ireland.
From 1717-1776 many Scottish people migrated from Ireland to America. They helped America in the war of independence, which was finally won in 1783.
In the early 18th century restrictions on Catholics had been strengthened under the "Penal Laws". Those should prevent Catholics from getting back in a position. The Catholics were banned from parliament, school, official jobs and lost their voting rights.
In 1789 the French Revolution or "Bloody Revolution" took place. Its principles inspired the Irish for a revolution and gave them new hope. Young, educated people wanted a free society.
In 1791 the "United Irishmen" were founded to break the link with Britain. They demanded independence and Catholic rights. Wolfe Tone would become one of their most important leaders.
At the same time the protestant group "Orange Order" was formed to protect the English ascendency.
1795 - 1798
In 1795 the parliament wanted to give full rights to the Catholics, but protestants refused to accept this.
Tone went to France and asked for military help for an Irish Revolution. He told the French that Ireland would be in favour of France and against Britain.
He got arms and money and arrived with 15,000 French groups and 43 ships at the west coast of Ireland in 1796.
Because of the bad weather the French groups turned back home and the revolution didn't take place.
Still there were 100,000 men of the Irish United Army who were inspired by despair and idealism.
The Irish Revolution was planned for the summer of 1798. During a crackdown by the British military many leaders of the United Irishmen were arrested and the Revolution was prevented once more.
The Irishmen had their first victory in Oulart, where 100 governmental soldiers were killed. Irishmen could then capture Wexford and Enniscorthy.
The final battle
In 1798 the Revolution took place. On one side there was the United Irish Intelligence and on the other side there were the Ancient Defenders.
The final battle was held in New Ross. In the end, the Irishmen were defeated by the British again. By the end of the summer, 30,000 people were dead and numerous fighters of the United Irish Intelligence were deported to the penal colonies of Australia.
THE AGE OF CONQUEST
In the 12th century Ireland was a land of farmers ruled by clan chieftains who paid homage to five provincial kings. Ireland had a high king, but he had limited power.
MacMurrough was one of the provincial kings of Ireland, but when the others united against him, he fled to England.
He made a pact with the English king Henry II. Henry would invade Ireland, and in return MacMurrough would accept him as his regent.
In 1170, a baron called Strongbow, recruited by MacMurrough, invaded Ireland with his army and easily overpowered the Irish people.
The Marriage of Strongbow and Aoife
commemorates Strongbow's marriage to MacMurrough's daughter after arriving in Ireland.
(Bad luck Brian)
In 1171, King Henry II came to Ireland with a massive army and over the next 50 years the English implemented their laws, language and parliamentary system into Ireland.
English and Irish people were strictly separated, so in 1317, the Irish chieftains appealed to the pope for help, but they were ignored and English influence still remained strong in Ireland.
400 000 people died of disease - civilians as well as soldiers.
The Gaelic society collapsed at that point.
When the Scots started attacking England and when the plague struck in 1348, many of the English lords abandoned Ireland and their properties were taken by the Gaelic lords.
When King Henry VIII created the Anglican church, he tried to spread his religion into a strongly Catholic Ireland. He ultimately failed, but his daughter Elizabeth continued his work.
By the late 1580s, Ulster was the only province which still remained Catholic. It was the stronghold of Hugh O'Neill, who forged an alliance with Hugh O'Donnell and started the Nine Years War.
The Nine Years War
The Irish people found another ally in the Spanish army, but they were besieged by the English after arriving in Ireland. Even though the Irish and Spanish army was almost twice as big as the English, they were defeated on Christmas Day 1601 at the Battle of Kinsale because of a series of tactical blunders.
The power of the Gaelic lords was broken forever after the war. O'Neill surrendered,left Ireland and died in Rome in 1616. For the English, the rebellion proved that a Catholic Ireland would always be a threat.
(The Story of Ireland)
AGE OF REVOLUTION