No. 112 NAI DFA ES Box 37

Memorandum by Joseph P. Walshe for members of the Irish delegation to the
League of Nations Assembly

DUBLIN, 28 August 1923


- Position of Delegates -

It is customary in every country for the Ministry of External Affairs to give advice to political missions before they leave for Foreign countries.

In this instance the need scarcely exists as our international relations are still too vague to afford a basis for defining our attitude. The Delegates are however respectfully urged to adapt themselves to cosmopolitan usages in all matters of dress, tenure and general decorum. French writers on the manners of diplomatists insist on the necessity above all things of avoiding singularities and idiosyncrasies and of conforming in apparently trivial things (e.g. usage in doffing one's hat) to accepted customs and conventions.


The Delegates will hold council among themselves about their attitude towards the other nations of the Commonwealth. It is the opinion of this Ministry that while relations with these latter should be most cordial, we should endeavour to associate for the most part with Delegates of other nations of Europe, especially the smaller nations.

This will emphasize our real position as one of the old nations of Europe and will obviate any impression which might be created in the United States by too frequent association with the British Group.


The Delegates, i.e. The President, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister of Education have primary right of séance at the Sittings of the Assembly, the substitute Delegates (The Attorney General, Marquis MacSwiney and Mr. Esmonde) have equal rights of séance with the Delegates at Commissions and can at all times replace the Delegates at the Assembly. It is quite in order, e.g. for Delegates to sit at the back of the Hall while substitute Delegates sit at the Assembly table. There is no real distinction except that no more than three members of the Delegation can sit at the ?table? at the same time. The Deputy Delegate, Mr. Kevin O'Shiel, can take the place of any of the delegates in case of absence.

Is mise le meas,
[signed] M. MACWHITE

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