Overview

Poynings' law

From the late 15th century the English Parliament asserted legal authority over Ireland

Civil war

How the English Parliament responded to civil war, not only in Ireland, but also in England and Scotland

From Cromwell to the Boyne

How Ireland took its place in the Commonwealth Parliament of Oliver Cromwell’s republic

Constitutional differences

Throughout the 17th and 18th centuries Ireland questioned the English Parliament’s right to pass laws on Irish affairs

Meeting Ireland's terms

Following constitutional and popular campaigns against British rule, the Irish Parliament reasserts its authority over Irish affairs

Parliamentary union

Concerned that Britain and Ireland were drifting apart, the British government pursues a formal union of the British and Irish parliaments

Repeal

A movement soon developed in Ireland to repeal the 1801 Act of Union

Catholic emancipation

Pressure grows to grant Ireland’s Catholic population the right to vote and sit in the UK Parliament

Legislative reform

Parliament addresses several aspects of Irish affairs, including the church, Poor Law and local government

The great famine

Parliament tries to address what became a defining moment in Irish history, the sustained failure of its potato crop

Land and politics

Another dominant issue in 19th century Ireland was land reform

Disestablishment

Gladstone also sought to break the connection between church and state in Ireland

Home rule

Irish MPs begin to organise themselves into a party committed to home rule for Ireland

Two home rule Bills

Parliament considers two proposals for granting Ireland a degree of independence

Third home rule Bill

Parliament considers a third measure to answer the Irish question

Conflict

In 1916 a group of Irish republicans proclaimed Ireland an independent state

Ireland becomes a Republic

Parliament ratifies a decision by the Irish Free State to leave the British Commonwealth

Direct rule

The UK Parliament asserts direct control over Northern Ireland as a response to growing violence

Sunningdale agreement

Parliament attempts to restore devolved government in Northern Ireland