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The magnificent scenery the Ireland’s Atlantic coastline faces a 2,000-mile- (3,200-km-) large expanse of ocean, and also its geographic isolation has actually helped the to develop a well-off heritage of culture and tradition that was connected initially to the Gaelic language. To wash by numerous rain, the country’s pervasive grasslands develop a green-hued landscape that is responsible because that the renowned sobriquet Emerald Isle. Ireland is also renowned for its riches of folklore, from tales of tiny leprechauns with concealed pots of yellow to that of the patron saint, Patrick, with his legendary ridding the island that snakes and his deemed use of the three-leaved shamrock as a symbol for the Christian Trinity. But while numerous may think the Ireland as an fascinating land, the republic has been beset v perennial concerns—emigration, social and politics identity, and also relations with north Ireland (comprising the 6 of Ireland’s 32 counties within the province of Ulster the remain component of the united Kingdom). At the start of the 21st century, Ireland’s long-standing economic problems were abating, owing to its diverse export-driven economy, yet calamity win again in 2008 once a brand-new financial and economic crisis befell the country, finishing in a really costly bailout that the Irish economic situation by the europe Union (EU) and the worldwide Monetary Fund.


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The introduction of Ireland together an independent country is a fairly recent phenomenon. Until the 17th century, political strength was extensively shared among a rather loosely constructed network of small earldoms in often-shifting alliances. Following the so-called “Flight of the Earls” after ~ an unsuccessful uprising in the early on 17th century, Ireland effectively ended up being an English colony. It was formally incorporated into the united kingdom in 1801. A 1914 Home dominance Act was passed however never implemented due to pro-union militancy in the north, the onset of civilization War I, and the subsequent Irish battle of Independence. In 1920 the island was properly partitioned with the production of north Ireland, a six-county area v devolved powers within the unified Kingdom, vice versa, under the Anglo-Irish contract of December 6, 1921, the various other 26 counties became the Irish complimentary State, a self-governing preeminence within the brother Commonwealth and Empire. In 1937 the southerly state happen a brand-new constitution that offered a more robust expression that sovereignty, and also in 1949 that formally left the republic as the Republic of Ireland.

Since then Ireland has come to be integrated with the rest of west Europe. It joined the european Economic ar (forerunner that the EU) in 1973. Though the nation generally preserved a neutral duty in international affairs, in 2008 Ireland became an impediment come the it spreads widely of the Lisbon Treaty—an covenant aimed in ~ streamlining the EU’s processes and also giving it a higher international profile—when the irish voted versus the i of the treaty in a nationwide referendum. The treaty, however, was authorized by ireland voters in a second referendum, organized the complying with year.

Explore the background of the irish people and the influence of the mass emigration in America during the 19th-century famine
Overview that the civilization of Ireland, with a focus on the influence of the mass emigration to the united States throughout the 19th century.

Dependent ~ above agriculture, Ireland was long among Europe’s poorest regions, a principal reason of mass migration from Ireland, especially during the bike of starvation in the 19th century. Part 40 million Americans trace their ancestry to Ireland as a an outcome of the traumatic exodus, as do countless others throughout the world. Every year members the this diaspora visit their ancestral homeland and forge relationships with long-lost family.

Explore the culture and tradition of the cosmopolitan city Dublin, the fashion, music, Trinity College, and also the colorful pubs frequented by tourists and Dubliners

Ireland’s resources is Dublin, a populous and also affluent city whose urban area is residence to much more than one-fourth that the country’s complete population. The city’s old dockside neighbourhoods have actually given method to brand-new residential and also commercial development. Cork, Ireland’s 2nd largest city, is a handsome cathedral city and also port in the southwest. Various other principal centres encompass Waterford, Wexford, and also Drogheda top top the eastern coast, Sligo in the northwest, and Limerick and Galway in the west.

River Liffey, Dublin
View of Dublin native the flow Liffey.

Although Ireland is currently both urbanized and Europeanized, its culture retains countless unique characteristics, and also its civilization prize folkloric and also social traditions that mostly derive from and also celebrate the country’s countryside past. In “Meditations over time of polite War” William servant Yeats, probably Ireland’s best-known poet, evokes the idyllic and idealized countryside, a place main to the memory of the country’s millions of expatriates and also their descendants:

An acre the stony ground,

Where the symbolic rose deserve to break in flower,

Old ragged elms, old thorn innumerable,

The sound that the rain or sound

Of every wind the blows;

The stilted water-hen

Crossing present again

Scared through the splashing of a dozen cows.


The republic that Ireland occupies the greater component of an island lying come the west of an excellent Britain, from which that is separated—at ranges ranging from 11 come 120 mile (18 to 193 km)—by the phibìc Channel, the irish Sea, and St. George’s Channel. Situated in the temperate zone in between latitudes 51°30′ and also 55°30′ N and also longitudes 6°00′ and 10°30′ W—as far north together Labrador or brothers Columbia in Canada and also as far west together the West african state that Liberia—it constitutes the westernmost station of the Atlantic fringe of the Eurasian landmass (the absolute excessive of i beg your pardon is Tearaght Island, the westernmost member that the Blasket Islands, i m sorry lie turn off the Dingle Peninsula and are component of county Kerry). Ireland, which, like good Britain, as soon as formed part of this landmass, lies top top the European continent shelf, surrounded by seas the are typically less 보다 650 feet (200 metres) deep. The greatest distance from north to southern in the island is 302 miles (486 km), and from east to west it is 171 mile (275 km).

Ireland"s coastline
Aerial see of Ireland"s coastline.
Goodshoot/Getty photos Plus


The are of the republic consists of a wide and undulating main plain underlain through limestone. This level is ringed almost completely by coastal highlands, i m sorry vary significantly in geologic structure. The flatness that the main lowland—which lies because that the most part between 200 and also 400 feet (60 and 120 metres) over sea level—is relieved in many places by short hills in between 600 and also 1,000 feet (180 come 300 metres) in elevation. With numerous lakes, big bog areas, and low ridges, the lowland is really scenic. The principal hill ranges room the Blue Stack mountains in the north, the Wicklow mountains in the east (topped by Lugnaquillia, at 3,039 feet <926 metres>), the Knockmealdown and Comeragh hills in the south, the Macgillycuddy’s Reeks in the southwest, and the Twelve Pins in the west. Carrantuohill, in ~ 3,414 feet (1,041 metres) in the Macgillycuddy’s Reeks, is the highest point in the republic. In the west and also southwest the wild and beautiful coast is greatly indented where the hills of Donegal, Mayo, Galway, and Kerry thrust out right into the Atlantic, be separate by deep wide-mouthed bays, some of which—Bantry Bay and Dingle Bay, for example—are, in fact, drowned flow valleys. By contrast, the east shore is tiny indented, yet most that the country’s trade passes v its ports since of your proximity to British and Continental markets.

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The coastal mountain fringe illustrates the country’s complicated geologic history. In the west and also northwest and in the east, the hills are composed mostly of granite. Old Red Sandstone predominates in the south, where the parallel folded mountain ridges trend east-west, be separate by limestone flow valleys. Ireland skilled at the very least two basic glaciations—one covering most of the country and also the other extending as far south as a line linking Limerick, Cashel, and also Dublin—and the characteristics diversity of ireland scenery owes much to this glacial influence. The big areas that peat bog to be found throughout the country are a notable feature of the landscape.