While people around the world celebrated Easter this past weekend, Ireland was gearing up for one of the biggest celebrations the country has seen in 100 years. Easter Week marks the beginning of the events this month dedicated to the 1916 Easter Rising Centenary.
2016 marks 100 years since a relatively small group of rebellion fighters took a stand and proclaimed Ireland to be free from British control. After 6 days the rebellion was put down by the much larger and better equipped British army, but the actions of the brave men and women during Easter week of 1916 laid the groundwork for Irish independence a few years later.
This year on Easter Monday (the 28th), a massive crowd filled the streets of Dublin- the numbers estimated to have been in the hundreds of thousands. The turnout was for ceremonies commemorating the men and women who gave their lives fighting for freedom from British rule.
As seen in the video montage below, wreaths were laid at 7 key points in Dublin including one by President Michael D. Higgins during a ceremony in front of the General Post Office, an iconic location in the Easter Rising, honoring those killed in the pursuit of independence.
A flyover of military jets added to the pomp and circumstance that included a tribute parade. Over 5,000 relatives of the rebellion heroes were on hand for the occasion as well.
News outlets and Irish organizations have already started publishing many great resources to learn more about the Easter Rising. In a remarkable showing of the unity felt by Irish around the world, RTE News posted the following video, in which people from across the globe join together to recite the Proclamation of the Irish Republic.
The Proclamation is read by people around the world as part of 'Centenary', a performance of the 1916 Risinghttps://t.co/0MIL0oloNL
— RTÉ News (@rtenews) March 28, 2016
With so many great resources, be sure to take time over the course of the next month to learn more about this pivotal time in Irish history.
Were any of your relatives involved in the Easter Rising? Let us know!