Irish states since 1171
Irish states have existed under a number of different names for nearly a thousand years. A unified Irish proto-state had been coalescing from the multitude of small tribal kingdoms that existed circa AD 500, similar to the pattern elsewhere in Europe. The development of the several dynastic regional kingdoms into a nascent national kingdom, however, was extinguished by the Norman invasion of Ireland in 1169.
This list deals with the various states that existed from 1171 onwards that owed their origin to Norman and later, English involvement on the island of Ireland. These were recognised by the Holy See before 1570 and after 1766. Until the whole island was subdued following the end of the Nine Years' War in 1603 these states shared the island of Ireland with a patchwork of indigenous states that existed outside of their authority.
The list below refers to all-Ireland (or nominally all-Ireland) states and to the post-partition states, not the patchwork of small Gaelic kingdoms.
- Part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland (1801–1922)
- The revolutionary Irish Republic (1919–22)
- Northern Ireland (1921–present) and Southern Ireland (1921–22), both created by the Government of Ireland Act 1920, though only the former existed in reality.
- Irish Free State (Saorstát Éireann) (1922–37)
- Ireland (1937–present), often known since 1949 by its official description, Republic of Ireland, and sometimes in English as Éire, the word for Ireland in Irish.
For international purposes the British monarch was also King of Ireland until 1949, but from 1937 his internal powers in Ireland had been transferred to the President of Ireland. With the enactment of the Republic of Ireland Act in 1949, all powers of the British monarch were transferred to the president. The name of the state remained Ireland, even after the passing of the Republic of Ireland Act, see names of the Irish state.
Timeline of Irish states
|Gaelic Ireland||Confederate Ireland||Republic of Connacht2||Irish Republic||Irish Free State||Ireland|
|Lordship of Ireland1||Kingdom of Ireland||Commonwealth
|Kingdom of Ireland||United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland||Southern Ireland3|
|United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland|
|Northern Ireland||1969—72||Direct rule|