No. 171 NAI DE 2/304/1

Telegram from Eamon de Valera to Pope Benedict XV (Vatican City)

Mansion House, Dublin, 20 October 1921

The people of Ireland have read the message sent by Your Holiness to the King of Great Britain and appreciate the kindly interest in their welfare and the paternal regard which suggested it. I tender to Your Holiness their gratitude. They are confident that the ambiguities in the reply sent in the name of King George will not mislead you, as it may the uninformed, into believing that the troubles are 'in' Ireland, or that the people of Ireland owe allegiance to the British King.

The independence of Ireland has been formally proclaimed by the regularly elected representatives of the people of Ireland, and ratified by subsequent plebiscites.

The trouble is between Ireland and Britain, and its source that the rulers of Britain have sought to impose their will upon Ireland, and by brutal force have endeavoured to rob her people of the liberty which is their natural right and their ancient heritage.

We long to be at peace and in friendship with the people of Great Britain as with other peoples, but the same constancy through persecution and martyrdom that has proved the reality of our people's attachment to the faith of their Fathers proved the reality of their attachment to their natural freedom, and no consideration will ever induce them to abandon it.

Eamon de Valera

Purchase Volumes Online

Purchase Volumes Online



The Royal Irish Academy's Documents on Irish Foreign Policy series has published an eBook of confidential correspondence on the 1921 Anglo-Irish Treaty negotiations.

Free Download

International Counterparts

The international network of Editors of Diplomatic Documents was founded in 1988. Delegations from different parts of the world met for the first time in London in 1989.
Read more ....

Website design and developed by FUSIO