DeValera Election Song
DESCRIPTION: The coming election is between "a Castle servant" and DeValera. DeValera "fought in the Rebellion ... so don't forget to pay the debt." His opponent would send your sons "to fight the gallant German"
EARLIEST DATE: 1976 (IRClare01)
KEYWORDS: Ireland nonballad political
1917 - Eamon DeValera defeats Patrick Lynch in the East Clare MP bi-election (source: notes to IRClare01).
FOUND IN: Ireland
Nora Cleary, "DeValera Election Song" (on IRClare01)
cf. "Green Flag of Erin" (subject)
NOTES [211 words]: Notes to IRClare01: "The East Clare by-election of 1917 played a vital part in the movement towards Irish independence.... Newly released from prison and having narrowly avoided execution for his part in the Rebellion, Eamon DeValera easily took the seat." - BS
Not only was De Valera elected to the British parliament on July 11, 1917, but he was even elected to a seat that had formerly been held by the brother of John Redmond, the leader of the Irish Nationalist party (i.e. the moderate Irish faction); see Terry Golway, For the Cause of Liberty, p. 251. This was the third in a series of by-elections in which pro-Republic candidates defeated "Nationalist" (moderate) candidates (see Peter and Fiona Somerset fry, A History of Ireland, pp. 296-296). It was one of the first major tokens of the shift in feeling in Ireland from a desire for Home Rule to a desire for something less dependent on the British government.
The "Castle" was Dublin Castle, which had long been the center of the Irish government and was still the symbolic center of Irish rule.
De Valera was one of the few high officers of the 1916 rebellion to survive; he lived mostly because he was born to an American family and the British didn't want an incident with the United States. - RBW
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