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"The aftermath of Waterloo in Ireland: ‘Peace to the World!" Topic


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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP16 Jun 2022 9:24 p.m. PST

…Plenty to the Poor!'


"So declared a celebratory public illumination in Dublin city 10 days after the battle of Waterloo had been fought. It might seem astonishing now to hear that the news of Wellington's victory over Napoleon took 3 days and 2 hours to reach the London press, 1 but it took even longer to reach Ireland. Eight days after Wellington had routed the French army, the general's dispatch was finally reproduced in full in the Irish papers. 2

Alongside the relief and joy found across Britain, the Irish papers were additionally pleased because Wellington was an Irishman. To the Freeman's Journal, he was ‘our truly great and gallant-minded countryman'. 3 Wellington himself did not build a career on his Irishness, preferring the British army to Irish politics. It was Daniel O'Connell who famously said ‘He was born in Ireland; but being born in a stable does not make a man a horse.' 4 Naturally, Wellington's conspicuous absence of Irish patriotism did not dampen the ardour of the Irish public. The Dublin Journal took his victory as further proof that ‘the men of Ireland are instinctively brave – that courage is indigenous to the soil'. Unfortunately, Wellington was rarely in Ireland, since he did not even own an estate in the country. His Irishness was definitely compromised by this so the writer suggested that the Crown grant ‘our Wellington' the Curragh of Kildare for his own. 5 In this completely over-the-top suggestion, the writer reveals how desperate some were to appropriate Wellington for the Irish nation. The Irishmen who fought and died as ordinary soldiers merited no mention at all…"


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Armand

Regicide164917 Jun 2022 11:55 a.m. PST

I agree with point number 5: 'the writer reveals how desperate some were to appropriate Wellington for the Irish nation.' The 'Irish nation' did not exist in 1815; in fact, not until 1922. I detest the man for his Tory politics and would happily boot him out of all cultured liberal discourse pertaining to the nation of England, but unfortunately, have to own him as England's third best general (after Cromwell and Marlborough).

The term 'Anglo-Irish' appears now in many works almost as an ethnicity; it in fact means that the governing class was entirely 'anglo' and the oppressed tenants were alomost exclusively Irish (speaking generally and excluding Ulster where the Scots also oppressed themselves). The Dublin press that sought to claim Wellington as their own actually had a right to: it was all within the Pale of Protestant ascendency.

I humbly submit that the rest of the article is largely BS.

Nine pound round17 Jun 2022 2:56 p.m. PST

I have always wondered whether he spoke the language with a touch of an Irish accent, or whether he spoke and sounded like any other upper-class Englishman of his day. He is one of the last generations of whom we have no recording, unfortunately.

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP17 Jun 2022 3:28 p.m. PST

Thanks!

Armand

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