The term Anglo-Irish means British-Irish and is used frequently to describe formal contacts, negotiations or treaties between both states. The most famous examples are:

The term Anglo-Irish was applied to Irish aristocrats of British or partially British descent, or indeed to all members of the Peerage of Ireland since the flight of the Earls. One leading Anglo-Irish peer described his experience as one of the 'Anglo-Irish' as being regarded as Irish in England, English in Ireland and not accepted fully as belonging to either. However such divisions are no longer as prevalent in Ireland, where Anglo-Irish peers have played a prominent role in modern Irish affairs.

The term was also used for the anglicized Anglican Protestant Irish who made up the Irish professional classes. A number of them became famous as poets or writers, Dean Swift, Oscar Wilde, W.B. Yeats and George Bernard Shaw for example, others became high ranking military officers, Lord Kitchener. They were usually of Irish ancestry and considered themselves Irish, but adopted the English ways and manners of speaking, though not always English politics. This class developed as there were restrictions on Roman Catholics entering the legal, medical and other professions.

The term is no longer widely used in a current context. People who the term would have referred to in the past have been partly assimilated into Irish society, and would now be described as "southern Irish Protestants", or "Protestants of the Republic of Ireland". Brendan Behan used the term in one play, where he defined an Anglo-Irishman as "a Protestant with a horse", meaning a gentleman of the upper or middle classes as opposed to a member of the working class.

Among the most prominent Anglo-Irish Peers are or were:

A number of Anglo-Irish Peers have been appointed by Presidents of Ireland to serve on their advisory Council of State. A number of peers were also considered possible candidates for presidents of Ireland, including

See also

Further reading

  • Peter Berresford Ellis, Erin's Blood Royal: The Gaelic Noble Dynasties of Ireland ISBN 0094786003

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