Ireland: History


  1. 300s BC

    The Celts invade the island of Ireland and establish 5 kingdoms.

  2. 1800

    The Irish parliament passes the Act of Union with Great Britain, officially becoming a part of the United Kingdom.

  3. 1846

    The Irish Potato Famine begins and lasts until 1848. Over one million die and many others emigrate.

  4. 1916

    The Easter Uprising is started by Irish Nationalists, soon to be crushed by the British. The British government then executes the rebellion leaders, infuriating the Irish public.

  5. 1921

    The Anglo-Irish War ends and the Anglo-Irish treaty is signed. As part of the treaty, the Irish Free State is created, consisting of 26 southern counties. The six mostly Protestant, northern countries remain part of the United Kingdom.

  6. 1948

    The Government formally declares Ireland a republic and Ireland leaves the British Commonwealth in 1949.

  7. 1973

    Ireland joins the European Economic Community.

  8. 1991

    Ireland signs the Maastricht Treaty, which establishes the European Union.

  9. 2002

    The Euro replaces the Punt as the national currency.

  10. 2006

    The government begins a 20-year plan to create a bilingual, Irish and English-speaking society.

  11. 2009

    Ireland loses its AAA debt rating as public finances deteriorate amid a deep recession.

  12. 2010

    The government agrees to an 85 billion Euro rescue package with the European Union and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The package includes austerity measures including tax increases and spending cuts for the next four years.

  13. 2012

    Irish voters approve the European Union fiscal treaty by 60%, supporting the European Union-backed austerity program.

Glossary