Because of Ireland’s geographical proximity to Great Britain the two nations suffered from a long, drawn out history of English colonization, as well as christianization, of Ireland and Irish reactionary resistance. The conquests of Ireland spanned from the first with the Tudor conquest of the 1530s to the second conquest in 1641 to the third conquest in 1690 in which Britain took full control over Ireland. With the suppression of yet another Irish uprising against British rule in 1798, Great Britain declared the Act of Union of 1801, thereby incorporating Ireland into the United Kingdom. The act was met with opposition from Irish nationalists and the independent republic of the Irish Free State was established in 1922 from the southern provinces of the island. Between 1800 and 1916 controversies over the relationship between the English and the Irish were a direct result of British imperialism, religious tensions, and Irish nationalism.
The historical struggle for British domination over Ireland had led to the cultivation of the Act of Union in 1801 of which William Pitt, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, declared that, “Ireland must be governed in the English interest.”, thus joining together Great Britain with Ireland within the legal confines of the United Kingdom. John Walker Croker, an editor of a Conservative party journal, argued in favor of the union by stating that Ireland’s property is owed, “exclusively to England.” and that all of Ireland’s misery “she owes to herself.” thereby arguing that Ireland owes an unofficial debt to England for the facilitation it’s affluence and that the ails of Ireland are not the responsibility or fault of England. Another supporter of British imperialism in regards to Ireland was Sir Ellis Ashmead Bartlett, a member...
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