Author: Bruce Gaston

The Flight of the Earls

This post was originally written on Quora in answer to the question: “Irish History: What was the ‘Flight of the Earls’, and why was it important?” This is my response: It probably matters most because of what it symbolised. The…

An answer to my question?

A few weeks ago I posed the question both here and on Twitter about what were the “six times [meaning six rebellions] during the last three hundred years” referred to on the 1916 Proclamation. I didn’t get any response. Having…

Book Review: Fatal Path by Ronan Fanning

Fatal Path book cover

This book was published last year to much acclaim. There were lots of complimentary reviews, and I’m not going to dissent here from the majority view. Ronan Fanning is Professor Emeritus of Modern History at University College Dublin and this…


From one review of Ireland and the British Empire (which I’ve just ordered from

Apparently de Valera was furious with Costello when he announced, in 1948, that the newly declared Republic would be leaving the Commonwealth, shortly before India and Pakistan announced that, as republics, they would stay in, on just the sort of terms as de Valera had wanted.

Full book details: Ireland and the British Empire (Oxford History of the British Empire Companion Series), edited by Kevin Kenny (OUP, 2006)