Proclaiming a Republic

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Proclaiming a Republic: Ireland, 1916, and the National Collection. This beautifully illustrated book evolved from the National Museum of Ireland’s landmark exhibition, ‘Proclaiming a Republic: the 1916 Rising’, which ran until April 2020. Many of the exhibited objects have never been on public display before. Darragh Gannon’s expert contextualisation of the National Museum’s collection provides an unprecedented opportunity to view interesting artefacts from 1916 more closely and to appraise the Rising and the other momentous events of that year in a completely new light. This book challenges the traditional ‘villains’ to ‘heroes’ narrative and the emphasis on the radicalising effect of the executions, profiling the layers of public opinion during Easter Week and charting the broader response of nationalist Ireland to martial law. Such marked critiques, of which there are many, are bolstered by the immediacy of the stunning illustrations. Proclaiming a Republic is a unique and compelling book that will remain essential to any assessment of 1916 for many years to come.