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The IRA in Britain, 1919-1923'In the Heart of Enemy Lines'$
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Gerard Noonan

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9781781380260

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9781781380260.001.0001

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(p.7) Prologue
The IRA in Britain, 1919-1923

Gerard Noonan

Liverpool University Press

In this chapter, the history of the Irish Volunteers in Britain is traced from its foundation in 1914 to the outbreak of the Irish war of independence in January 1919. Context and historical background is provided through a discussion of Irish republicanism in Britain prior to 1914, including the activities of the United Irishmen, the Irish Confederates and the IRB. The organizational and gunrunning activities of the Volunteers, the IRB, the Cumann na mBan and Na Fianna Éireann are studied. Detailed consideration is given to their participation in the Easter Rising in Ireland and their subsequent imprisonment and internment in Britain. Attention is then given to re-organization efforts and gun-smuggling endeavours following their liberation in 1917. Finally, the plot to assassinate British politicians in London so as to prevent the implementation of conscription in Ireland is studied.

Keywords:   Conscription, Easter Rising, Irish Republican Brotherhood, Irish Volunteers, Irish War of Independence

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