Causes Of The Easter Rising Of 1916

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The Easter Rising of 1916 is considered by many to be the turning point of Irish history; the pinnacle moment after which an entire country would be ‘changed, changed utterly.’ This is not, however, entirely true. In reality, it was not so much the insurrection itself as it was the aftermath which decided the fate of the island of Ireland. Had the British government not reacted in such a harsh and unscrupulous manner, there would not have been such a complete change in public opinion resulting in the rebels being viewed not as petty criminals, but as martyrs to the Irish cause. With the government’s actions came a very swift reaction from the people, and with it a renewed vigour to fight and gain independence from the punitive and unforgiving rule of the British. Undoubtedly, the real cause of Ireland’s increasingly persistent hostility was the actions of the British government itself.
The Easter Rising ended in failure on the 29th of April 1916, and with it a failure to invoke any feelings of discontent in the Irish people. Instead, there was nought but outrage for the extensive damage done to the country’s capital, with the general belief that ‘the British will never grant home rule now.’ The rebels were seen by many as foolhardy delinquents, and such was the hostility from the people of Dublin that British soldiers were forced to erect pickets with bayonets attached to ensure the protection of the prisoners. However, public opinion would soon be altered significantly.
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