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Ado about date for Ireland’s Easter Uprising centenary celebrations

March 27, 2016 - IRISH REPUBLIC

Dublin created a controversy over its Easter date for the commemoration of the centenary of the Easter Rising, the armed insurrection aimed at ending British rule in Ireland and establishing independence.

In 1916, Easter Monday fell on Apr 24, not Mar 27, and the critics argue that pinning the celebrations to Easter adds religious connotations to a secular milestone. Dublin is holding an additional commemoration on the calendar centenary, Apr 24.

The Easter Sunday events include a military ceremony, a parade from Dublin Castle to Parnell Square and state dinners for the families of the insurrectionists. Irish embassies around the world will organize parallel events.

An annual commemoration, usually a military parade, was held after 1916 on Easter Sunday. The largest celebration was in 1966 to mark the 50th anniversary. The Irish government discontinued the annual parades in the 1970s, mainly due to renewed violence during the period in Northern Ireland called The Troubles. A change of political climate has returned the celebration to the Irish calendar, and the 90th anniversary in 2006 was celebrated with a parade in Dublin - again on Easter Sunday.

Advocates of a secular commemoration want the annual events to be detached from the lunar calendar and held every year on Apr 24.

Easter Rising commemorative programme revealed (Irish Times 31 Mar 2015)

Easter Rising centenary should be 'shameless celebration', says UCD professor (Irish Times 21 Feb 2015)

Centenary of Easter Rising 1916 (Dublin City Council)

12 November 2014: launch of 'Ireland 2016? programme to mark centenary of Easter Rising, GPO, Dublin (Centenaries )

Date written/update: 2015-05-07