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Irish Police: British Imperialism at Work, 1814-1913

NCJ Number
Criminal Justice Review Volume: 13 Issue: 2 Dated: (Fall 1988) Pages: 51-89
S A Grennan
Date Published
38 pages
From 1814 to 1913 the Irish police enforced laws that benefited the Protestant minority.
Specifically, they collected tithes-payments to the Protestant Church-from tenant farmers who were mainly Catholic; aided landlords in the collection of rents and the eviction of tenants; suppressed the political groups who were trying to gain some rights for Irish peasants, and enforced insurrection, coercion, and criminal acts that were designed to impose tighter controls on the Catholic population through suppression of meetings, limits on freedom of speech, curfew, and imprisonment without trial. The Irish police were fully supported by the British administration in Dublin. At times, they used excessive force against the Irish peasantry while the government covered up their misdeeds and, on occasion, added a word of praise for them. The police were created, paid, directed, and pensioned off by the government. Thereby the British administration created a repressive police force to enforce its laws in Ireland. 5 notes, 31 references. (Author abstract)