Assess The Short Term Significances of The Easter Rising Arguably, one of the most important short term

significances of The Easter Rising was the transformation of the public opinion in such a small space of time. Within just 18 months of the rebellion, the nationalist consensus, which was originally in favour of home rule, was supplanted by a vast demand for an Irish republic. The December 1918 election showed the enormous decline in support for John Redmond’s Irish Parlementary Party (The IPP) who were all but eradicated by Sinn Féin in the election. The IPP’s representation reduced from a firm 70 to a feeble 6. Conversely, Sinn Féin won 73 of the 103 Irish seats. Sinn Féin were not directly involved in the Easter Rebellion, yet still gained an immense advantage from it. They were mistakenly associated with the rebellion by the Irish public. This association was down to The Irish Republican Brotherhood Military Council who planned the rebellion, as they were not widely known. Sinn Féin was perceived to be involved as they were the most well known, anti-English, nationalist propaganda group in Dublin. Further substantiation for the general conversion of public opinion can be found within a primary source written by James Stephen, in his ‘Diary of Easter Week’. The extract explains “She [Ireland] is excited a little…She was not with the revolution, but in a few months she will be.” When James Stephen refers to Ireland not being “with the revolution” then “in a few months she will be” he is informing the reader that “She” is the view of the majority and that the majority viewpoint had changed in Ireland significantly. From the 1918 election we can assume that the new, common desire for republicanism was the stance referred to in James Stephen’s diary entry. James Stephen was an Irish born poet and author; his political beliefs were sided with Sinn Féin as he began regular contributions the party in 1907[1]. This may have distorted his notion in his writing to exaggerate the common opinion that Sinn Fein had triumphantly succeeded in the 1918 election, and the misconception of Sinn Fein’s involvement in The Easter Rising.

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