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Political Thought in Ireland 1776-1798Republicanism, Patriotism, and Radicalism$
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Stephen Small

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780199257799

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199257799.001.0001

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From Radical Reform to Republican Separatism, 1793-1798

From Radical Reform to Republican Separatism, 1793-1798

(p.226) 7 From Radical Reform to Republican Separatism, 1793-1798
Political Thought in Ireland 1776-1798

Stephen Small

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the rhetoric and ideas of post-1793 radicalism and republicanism against the background of Protestant Ascendancy reaction and government repression. It argues that although the period witnessed an irrevocable schism in a previously inclusive patriot discourse (leading to the rejection or modification of key elements of the Protestant, classical republican, and ancient constitutional traditions) many of the older patriot ideas continued to carry weight among the majority of Irish radicals and republicans. The chapter analyses how the new ideological and rhetorical landscape created by the French Revolution encouraged some radicals to become republican, separatist revolutionaries. It also argues that while 1790s revolutionary republicanism was a new phenomenon, it was one that cannot be understood without recognising continuities with its patriot and Whiggish roots.

Keywords:   Ireland, radicalism, republicanism, patriotism, Protestant Ascendancy, separatism, French Revolution, constitution, repression

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