Ulster Protestant

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Percentage of Protestants in each electoral division in Ulster. Based on census figures from 2001 (UK) and 2006 (ROI).
0-10% dark green, 10-30% mid-green,
30-50% light green, 50-70% light orange,
70-90% mid-orange, 90-100% dark orange.
Changes in distribution of Irish Protestants, 1861–2011

An Ulster Protestant describes someone who is both Protestant and from Ulster. Most Ulster Protestants are descendants of the Protestant settlers involved in the early 17th century Ulster Plantation, mostly Lowland Scottish and Northern English people and predominantly from Galloway and the Scottish Borders.[1] Begun privately in 1606, the Plantation became government-sponsored in 1609. The majority of Ulster Protestants are also Ulster Scots people, but some are also of predominantly English, Irish Gaelic or Huguenot ancestry.[2] Another major influx of Scottish Protestants was a result of the seven ill years in the 1690s.[3]

Divisions between Ulster's Catholics and Protestants have played a major role in the history of Ulster from the 17th century to the present day, especially during the Plantation, the Cromwellian conquest of Ireland, the Glorious Revolution and the Troubles.[4] Most are Presbyterian or Anglican. Repression of Presbyterians by Anglicans (who followed the state religion) intensified after the Glorious Revolution (especially after the 1703 Test Act) and was one reason for heavy emigration to North America by Ulster Presbyterians during the 18th century (see Scotch-Irish American).[5] This repression largely ended after the Irish Rebellion of 1798.[6] Most Ulster Protestants live in Northern Ireland and tend to support the Union with the rest of the United Kingdom.[7] About 2% of Ulster Protestants reside in the rump of Ulster in the Republic of Ireland.[8]

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