Travel through our timeline of major events in Ireland's History
The first known inhabitants settle in Ireland.
Celtic tribes arrive on the island.
St. Patrick arrives in Ireland, bringing Christianity. (The Protestant faith did not yet exist.)
Britain's King Henry VIII is declared King of Ireland by Englishmen living in Ireland. He opposes the Catholic religion.
Britain's King James I sends thousands of Protestant English farmers to Ireland to take over land owned by Catholic farmers, mostly in the north.
New laws forbid Catholics to vote, own land or practice their religion. Such laws remain in effect until 1829.
A potato blight kills Ireland's staple food crop. About a million people die from starvation and fever during the Great Potato Famine.
The Easter Rebellion. Armed Irish patriots rebel against British troops in Dublin, Ireland, on the Monday after Easter. The British execute rebel leaders.
The Anglo-Irish War between the British and the Irish Republican Army. In a treaty, Britain finally gives up control of most of Ireland but tightens its grip on the six counties of Ulster (Northern Ireland).
Irish Civil War between those who accept the treaty with the English and the Irish Republican Army, which wants all of Ireland to be free of British rule. The Republicans lose.
Britain declares Ulster a permanent part of the British Empire. The lower 26 counties of Ireland declare themselves the Irish Republic, totally free of British control.
During anti-British protests in the Ulster town of Londonderry on January 30, 13 unarmed marchers are killed by British troops, an event now known as Bloody Sunday. Britain imposes direct rule on Ulster. A more intense era of bloodshed begins. The Irish call this violence the Troubles.
Mary Robinson becomes the first woman president of Ireland.
Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland adopt on The Good Friday Agreement, an important step in the peace process.
The Euro replaces the Irish pound, or punt, as Ireland's official currency.
The European Union officially recognizes Irish as a working language. The Irish government begins a 20-year plan to make Ireland a bilingual country where everyone speaks both Irish and English.