|Member of Parliament|
|Preceded by||William Field|
|Succeeded by||Constituency abolished|
|Constituency||Dublin St Patrick's|
December 1918 –May 1921
|Constituency||Dublin St Patrick's|
May 1921 –June 1922
August 1923 –July 1927
|Minister for Labour|
April 1919 –January 1922
|Preceded by||New office|
|Succeeded by||Joseph McGrath|
Constance Georgine Gore-Booth
4 February 1868
|Died||15 July 1927 59) (aged|
Sir Patrick Dun's Hospital,
|Resting place|| Glasnevin Cemetery,|
|Political party|| Fianna Fáil,|
Sinn Féin(before 1926)
|Spouse(s)||Casimir Markievicz (m. 1900)|
|Relations||Eva Gore-Booth (Sister)|
|Children||Maeve Markievicz (1901–62)|
|Allegiance|| Irish Republican Brotherhood |
Irish Citizen Army
Irish Republican Army
Cumann na mBan
|Years of service||1913–23|
|Battles/wars|| Dublin Lockout |
Irish War of Independence
Irish Civil War
Constance Georgine Markievicz, known as Countess Markievicz (Polish : Markiewicz [marˈkʲɛvit͡ʂ] ; néeGore-Booth; 4 February 1868 – 15 July 1927), was an Irish politician, revolutionary, nationalist, suffragette and socialist who served as Minister for Labour from 1919 to 1922. She served as a Teachta Dála for the Dublin South constituency from 1921 to 1922 and 1923 to 1927. She was a Member of Parliament (MP) for Dublin St Patrick's from 1918 to 1922.
Polish is a West Slavic language of the Lechitic group. It is spoken primarily in Poland and serves as the native language of the Poles. In addition to being an official language of Poland, it is also used by Polish minorities in other countries. There are over 50 million Polish language speakers around the world and it is one of the official languages of the European Union.
A revolutionary is a person who either participates in, or advocates revolution. Also, when used as an adjective, the term revolutionary refers to something that has a major, sudden impact on society or on some aspect of human endeavor.
Irish nationalism is a nationalist ideology which asserts that the Irish people are a nation and espouses the creation of a sovereign Irish nation-state on the island of Ireland. It grew more potent during the period in which the whole of Ireland was part of United Kingdom, which ultimately lead to most of the island seceding from the UK in 1921. Politically, Irish nationalism gave way to many factions which created conflict, often violent, throughout the island. The chief division affecting nationalism in Ireland was religious. The majority of the island's population was Roman Catholic, which is the part that seceded, but a portion of the northern part has a Protestant majority that elected to stay a part of the United Kingdom. Since the partition of Ireland, the term Irish nationalism often refers to support for the island's unification. Irish nationalists assert that foreign rule has been detrimental to Irish national interests. Irish nationalism also speaks to celebration of the culture of Ireland, especially the Irish language, literature, music and sports.
A founder member of Fianna Éireann, Cumann na mBan and the Irish Citizen Army, she took part in the Easter Rising in 1916, when Irish republicans attempted to end British rule and establish an Irish Republic. She was sentenced to death but this was reduced on the grounds of her sex. On 28 December 1918, she was the first woman elected to the UK House of Commons,though she did not take her seat and, along with the other Sinn Féin TDs, formed the first Dáil Éireann. She was also one of the first women in the world to hold a cabinet position as Minister for Labour from 1919 to 1922.
Na Fianna Éireann, known as the Fianna, is an Irish nationalist youth organisation founded by Bulmer Hobson and Constance Markievicz in 1909. Fianna members were involved in the setting up of the armed nationalist body the Irish Volunteers, and had their own circle of the Irish Republican Brotherhood (IRB). They took part in the 1914 Howth gun-running and in the 1916 Easter Rising. They were active in the War of Independence and took the anti-Treaty side in the Civil War.
Cumann na mBan, abbreviated C na mB, is an Irish republican women's paramilitary organisation formed in Dublin on 2 April 1914, merging with and dissolving Inghinidhe na hÉireann, and in 1916, it became an auxiliary of the Irish Volunteers. Although it was otherwise an independent organisation, its executive was subordinate to that of the Volunteers.
The Irish Citizen Army, or ICA, was a small paramilitary group of trained trade union volunteers from the Irish Transport and General Workers' Union (ITGWU) established in Dublin for the defence of workers' demonstrations from the police. It was formed by James Larkin, James Connolly and Jack White on 23 November 1913. Other prominent members included Seán O'Casey, Constance Markievicz, Francis Sheehy-Skeffington, P. T. Daly and Kit Poole. In 1916, it took part in the Easter Rising—an armed insurrection aimed at ending British rule in Ireland. Despite the relatively small size of the army, it was much more organised than the larger Irish Volunteers, with its members receiving far superior training and being largely unaffected by factional and ideological division. The ICA became involved in the War of Independence taking command of part of the city of Dublin and aiding the Irish Republican Army in various operations.
Constance Georgine Gore-Booth was born at Buckingham Gate in London in 1868, the elder daughter of the Arctic explorer and adventurer Sir Henry Gore-Booth, 5th Baronet, an Anglo-Irish landlord who administered a 100 km2 (39 sq mi) estate, and Georgina, Lady Gore-Booth, née Hill. During the famine of 1879–80, Sir Henry provided free food for the tenants on his estate at Lissadell House in the north of County Sligo in the north-west of Ireland. Their father's example inspired in Gore-Booth and her younger sister, Eva Gore-Booth, a deep concern for working people and the poor. The sisters were childhood friends of the poet W. B. Yeats, who frequently visited the family home Lissadell House, and were influenced by his artistic and political ideas. Yeats wrote a poem, "In Memory of Eva Gore-Booth and Con Markiewicz", in which he described the sisters as "two girls in silk kimonos, both beautiful, one a gazelle" (the gazelle being Constance). Eva later became involved in the labour movement and women's suffrage in Great Britain, although initially Constance did not share her sister's ideals.
Buckingham Gate is a street in Westminster London, England near Buckingham Palace.
Sir Henry William Gore-Booth, 5th Baronet, was a notable Arctic explorer, adventurer and landowner from Lissadell House, Sligo, Ireland.
The Irish famine of 1879 was the last main Irish famine. Unlike the earlier Great Famines of 1740–1741 and 1845–1852, the 1879 famine caused hunger rather than mass deaths, due to changes in the technology of food production, different structures of land-holding, income from Irish emigrants abroad which was sent to relatives back in Ireland, and in particular a prompt response of the British government, which contrasted with its laissez-faire response in 1845–1852.
Gore-Booth decided to train as a painter, but at the time only one art school in Dublin accepted women students. In 1892, she went to study at the Slade School of Art in London,where she lived at the Alexandra House for Art Pupils, Kensington Gore, founded five years before by Sir Francis Cook, a fabulously rich great-uncle of Maud Gonne. One of her contemporaries there was Blanche Georgiana Vulliamy. It was at this time that Gore-Booth first became politically active and joined the National Union of Women's Suffrage Societies (NUWSS). Later she moved to Paris and enrolled at the prestigious Académie Julian where she met her future husband, Casimir Markievicz, an artist from a wealthy Polish family from Ukraine. Markievicz was known in Paris as "Count Markievicz". When Constance's family enquired as to the validity of the title, they were informed through Pyotr Rachkovsky of the Russian Secret Police that he had taken the title "without right", and that there had never been a "Count Markievicz" in Poland. (An online list of counts of the imperial Russian nobility does not include anybody by the name of Markiewicz.) However, the Department of Genealogy in Saint Petersburg said that he was entitled to claim to be a member of the nobility. Markievicz was married, though separated, at the time that they met, but his wife died in 1899 and he and Gore-Booth married in London on 29 September 1900. She was afterwards known as "Countess Markievicz". She gave birth to their daughter, Maeve, at Lissadell in November 1901. The child was raised by her Gore-Booth grandparents and eventually became estranged from her mother. She undertook the role of mother to Stanislas, Casimir's son from his first marriage, who then accompanied the couple to Ireland.
Kensington Gore is the name of two thoroughfares on the south side of Hyde Park in central London, England. The streets connect the Royal Albert Hall with the Royal College of Art, the Royal Geographical Society and in Kensington Gardens the Albert Memorial. The area is named after the Gore estate which occupied the site until it was developed by Victorian planners in the mid 19th century. A gore is a narrow, triangular piece of land, in this case
the wedge-shaped piece of land which divides them, and which has been known from Anglo-Saxon times as The Gore.
Sir Francis Cook, 1st Baronet, 1st Viscount was a British merchant and art collector.
Maud Gonne MacBride was an English-born Irish revolutionary, suffragette and actress. Of Anglo-Irish descent, she was won over to Irish nationalism by the plight of evicted people in the Land Wars. She also actively agitated for Home Rule.
The Markieviczes settled in Dublin in 1903 and moved in artistic and literary circles, with Constance gaining a reputation as a landscape painter.In 1905, along with artists Sarah Purser, Nathaniel Hone, Walter Osborne and John Butler Yeats, she was instrumental in founding the United Arts Club, which was an attempt to bring together all those in Dublin with an artistic and literary bent. This group included the leading figures of the Gaelic League founded by the future first President of Ireland, Douglas Hyde. Although formally apolitical and concerned with the preservation of the Irish language and culture, the league brought together many patriots and future political leaders. Sarah Purser, whom the young Gore-Booth sisters first met in 1882, when she was commissioned to paint their portrait, hosted a regular salon where artists, writers and intellectuals on both sides of the nationalist divide gathered. At Purser's house, Markievicz met revolutionary patriots Michael Davitt, John O'Leary and Maud Gonne. In 1907, Markievicz rented a cottage in the countryside near Dublin. The previous tenant, the poet Padraic Colum, had left behind copies of The Peasant and Sinn Féin. These revolutionary journals promoted independence from British rule. Markievicz read these publications and was propelled into action.
Dublin is the capital and largest city of Ireland. It is on the east coast of Ireland, in the province of Leinster, at the mouth of the River Liffey, and is bordered on the south by the Wicklow Mountains. It has an urban area population of 1,173,179, while the population of the Dublin Region, as of 2016, was 1,347,359, and the population of the Greater Dublin area was 1,904,806.
Sarah Henrietta Purser was an Irish artist mainly noted for her work with stained glass.
Nathaniel Hone the Younger was an Irish painter, the great-grand-nephew of a better-known painter, Nathaniel Hone.
In 1908, Markievicz became actively involved in nationalist politics in Ireland. She joined Sinn Féin and Inghinidhe na hÉireann ('Daughters of Ireland'), a revolutionary women's movement founded by the actress and activist Maud Gonne, muse of W. B. Yeats. Markievicz came directly to her first meeting from a function at Dublin Castle, the seat of British rule in Ireland, wearing a satin ball-gown and a diamond tiara. Naturally, the members looked upon her with some hostility. This refreshing change from being "kowtowed"-to as a countess only made her more eager to join.[ citation needed ] She performed with Maud Gonne in several plays at the newly established Abbey Theatre, an institution that played an important part in the rise of cultural nationalism. In the same year, Markievicz played a dramatic role in the women's suffrage campaigners' tactic of opposing Winston Churchill's election to Parliament during the Manchester North West by-election, flamboyantly appearing in the constituency driving an old-fashioned carriage drawn by four white horses to promote the suffragist cause. A male heckler asked her if she could cook a dinner, to which she responded, "Yes. Can you drive a coach and four?" Her sister Eva had moved to Manchester to live with fellow suffragette Esther Roper and they both campaigned against Churchill with her. Churchill lost the election to Conservative candidate William Joynson-Hicks, in part as a result of the suffragists' dedicated opposition.
Sinn Féin is a left-wing Irish republican political party active in both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.
Inghinidhe na hÉireann was a radical Irish nationalist women's organisation led and founded by Maud Gonne from 1900 to 1914, when it merged with the new Cumann na mBan.
Dublin Castle is a major Irish government complex, conference centre, and tourist attraction. It is located off Dame Street in Dublin, Ireland.
In 1909 Markievicz and Bulmer Hobson founded Fianna Éireann, a para-military nationalist scouting organisation that instructed teenage boys in the use of firearms. At its first meeting in Camden Street, Dublin, on 16 August 1909, she was almost expelled on the basis that women did not belong in a physical force movement, but Hobson supported her, and she was elected to the committee.She was jailed for the first time in 1911 for speaking at an Irish Republican Brotherhood demonstration attended by 30,000 people, organised to protest against George V's visit to Ireland. During this protest Markievicz handed out leaflets, erected great masts: Dear land thou art not conquered yet., participated in stone-throwing at pictures of the King and Queen and attempted to burn the giant British flag taken from Leinster House, eventually succeeding, but then seeing James McArdle imprisoned for one month for the incident, despite Markievicz testifying in court that she was responsible. Her friend Helena Molony was arrested for her part in the stone-throwing and became the first woman in Ireland to be tried and imprisoned for a political act since the time of the Ladies Land League.
Markievicz also joined James Connolly's socialist Irish Citizen Army (ICA), a small volunteer force formed in response to the lock-out of 1913, to defend the demonstrating workers from the police. Markievicz recruited volunteers to peel potatoes in a basement while she and others worked on distributing the food. As all the food was paid out of her own pocket,[ citation needed ] Markievicz was forced to take out many loans, at this time, and sold all her jewellery. That same year, with Inghinidhe na hÉireann, she ran a soup kitchen to feed poor school children.
Fashion advice attributed to her was: "Dress suitably in short skirts and strong boots, leave your jewels in the bank and buy a revolver."
In 1913 Markievicz's husband moved back to Ukraine, and never returned to live in Ireland. However, they did correspond and he was by her side when she died in 1927. As a member of the ICA, Markievicz took part in the 1916 Easter Rising. She was deeply inspired by the founder of the ICA, James Connolly. Markievicz designed the Citizen Army uniform and composed its anthem, based on the tune of a Polish song.
In the Rising, Markievicz fought in St Stephen's Green, where on the first morning—according to one account—she shot a member of the (unarmed) Dublin Metropolitan Police, Constable Lahiff, who subsequently died of his injuries.District nurse Geraldine Fitzgerald, recorded in her diary that as she was returning from duty to the nurse’s home, located at the southwest corner of the Green, she saw:
“A lady in a green uniform, the same as the men were wearing (breeches, slouch hat with green feathers etc.) the feathers were the only feminine feature in her appearance, holding a revolver in one hand and a cigarette in the other, was standing on the footpath giving orders to the men. We recognized her as the Countess de Markievicz – such a specimen of womanhood. There were other women, similarly attired, inside the Park, walking about and bringing drinks of water to the men. We had only been looking out a few minutes when we saw a policeman walking down the path from Harcourt Street. He had only gone a short way when we heard a shot and then saw him fall forward on his face. The Countess ran triumphantly into the Green saying “I got him” and some of the rebels shook her by the hand and seemed to congratulate her.”
Other accounts place her at City Hall when the policeman was shot, only arriving at Stephen's Green later.It was long thought that she was second in command to Michael Mallin, but in fact it was Christopher "Kit" Poole who held that position. Markievicz supervised the setting-up of barricades on Easter Monday and was in the middle of the fighting all around Stephen's Green, wounding a British army sniper. Trenches were dug in the Green, sheltered by the front gate; however, after British machine gun and rifle fire from the rooftops of tall buildings on the north side of the Green including the Shelbourne Hotel, the Citizen Army troops withdrew to the Royal College of Surgeons on the west side of the Green.
The Stephen's Green garrison held out for six days, ending the engagement when the British brought them a copy of Pearse's surrender order. The British officer, Captain (later Major) de Courcy Wheeler, who accepted their surrender was married to Markievicz's first cousin.
They were taken to Dublin Castle and Markievicz was transported to Kilmainham Gaol. They were jeered by the crowds as they walked through the streets of Dublin. There, she was the only one of 70 women prisoners who was put into solitary confinement. At her court martial on 4 May 1916, Markievicz pleaded not guilty to "taking part in an armed rebellion...for the purpose of assisting the enemy," but pleaded guilty to having attempted "to cause disaffection among the civil population of His Majesty".Markievicz told the court, "I went out to fight for Ireland's freedom and it does not matter what happens to me. I did what I thought was right and I stand by it." She was sentenced to death, but the court recommended mercy "solely and only on account of her sex". The sentence was commuted to life in prison. When told of this, she said to her captors, "I do wish your lot had the decency to shoot me".
Markievicz was transferred to Mountjoy Prison and then to Aylesbury Prison in England in July 1916. She was released from prison in 1917, along with others involved in the Rising, as the government in London granted a general amnesty for those who had participated in it. It was around this time that Markievicz, born into the Church of Ireland, converted to Catholicism.
In 1918, she was jailed again for her part in anti-conscription activities. At the 1918 general election, Markievicz was elected for the constituency of Dublin St Patrick's, beating her opponent William Field with 66% of the vote, as one of 73 Sinn Féin MPs. The results were called on 28 December 1918.This made her the first woman elected to the United Kingdom House of Commons. However, in line with Sinn Féin abstentionist policy, she did not take her seat in the House of Commons.
Markievicz was in Holloway prison, when her colleagues assembled in Dublin at the first meeting of the First Dáil, the Parliament of the revolutionary Irish Republic. When her name was called, she was described, like many of those elected, as being "imprisoned by the foreign enemy" (fé ghlas ag Gallaibh).She was re-elected to the Second Dáil in the elections of 1921.
Markievicz served as Minister for Labour from April 1919 to January 1922, in the Second Ministry and the Third Ministry of the Dáil. Holding cabinet rank from April to August 1919, she became both the first Irish female Cabinet Minister and at the same time, only the second female government minister in Europe.She was the only female cabinet minister in Irish history until 1979 when Máire Geoghegan-Quinn was appointed to the cabinet post of Minister for the Gaeltacht for Fianna Fáil.
Markievicz left government in January 1922 along with Éamon de Valera and others in opposition to the Anglo-Irish Treaty. She fought actively for the Republican cause in the Irish Civil War helping to defend Moran's Hotel in Dublin. After the War she toured the United States. She was not elected in the 1922 Irish general election but was returned in the 1923 general election for the Dublin South constituency. In common with other Republican candidates, she did not take her seat. However, her staunch republican views led her to being sent to jail again. In prison, she and 92 other female prisoners went on hunger strike. Within a month, she was released.
She left Sinn Fein and joined the new Fianna Fáil party on its foundation in 1926, chairing the inaugural meeting of the new party in La Scala Theatre. In the June 1927 general election, she was re-elected to the 5th Dáil as a candidate for Fianna Fáil, which was pledged to return to Dáil Éireann, but died only five weeks later, before she could take her seat.Her fellow Fianna Fáil TDs signed the Oath of Fidelity to King George V and took their seats in the Dáil on 12 August 1927, less than a month after her death. The party leader Éamon de Valera described the Oath as "an empty political formula".
Markievicz died at the age of 59 on 15 July 1927, of complications related to appendicitis. She had given away the last of her wealth, and died in a public ward "among the poor where she wanted to be".One of the doctors attending her was her revolutionary colleague, Kathleen Lynn. Also at her bedside were Casimir and Stanislas Markievicz, Éamon de Valera and Hanna Sheehy-Skeffington. Refused a state funeral by the Free State government, she was buried at Glasnevin Cemetery, Dublin, and de Valera gave the funeral oration.
Seán O'Casey said of her: "One thing she had in abundance—physical courage; with that she was clothed as with a garment."
In 2018 a portrait of Markievicz was donated by the Irish government to the House of Commons to commemorate the 1918 Representation of the People Act, in which, some women were allowed the right to vote for the first time.
Cathal Brugha was an Irish revolutionary and republican politician who served as Minister for Defence from 1919 to 1922, Ceann Comhairle of Dáil Éireann in January 1919, President of Dáil Éireann from January 1919 to April 1919 and Chief of Staff of the Irish Republican Army from 1917 to 1919. He served as a Teachta Dála (TD) from 1918 to 1922.
The First Dáil was elected on 18 December 1918 and first met on 21 January 1919, on which date the First Ministry assumed office, and lasted for 892 days.
Count George Noble Plunkett was a biographer, politician and Irish nationalist who served as Minister for Fine Arts from 1921 to 1922, Minister for Foreign Affairs from 1919 to 1921 and Ceann Comhairle of Dáil Éireann in January 1919. He served as a Teachta Dála (TD) from 1918 to 1927. He was a Member of Parliament (MP) for Roscommon North from 1917 to 1922.
Eva Selina Laura Gore-Booth was an Irish poet and dramatist, and a committed suffragist, social worker and labour activist. She was born at Lissadell House, County Sligo, the younger sister of Constance Gore-Booth, later known as the Countess Markievicz.
Events from the year 1927 in Ireland.
Margaret Buckley was an Irish republican and leader of Sinn Féin from 1937 to 1950.
Helena Mary Molony was a prominent Irish republican, feminist and labour activist. She fought in the 1916 Easter Rising and later became the second woman president of the Irish Trade Union Congress.
Caitlín Brugha was an Irish Sinn Féin politician who served as a Teachta Dála (TD) for the Waterford constituency from 1923 to 1927.
Events from the year 1868 in Ireland.
Kathleen Florence Lynn was an Irish Sinn Féin politician, activist and medical doctor.
Máire Comerford (1892-1982) was an Irish republican from County Wexford who witnessed central events in 1916-23 and remained a committed supporter of Cumann na mBan until her death.
Pádraic Ó Máille was an Irish politician. He was a founder member of Sinn Féin and of the Gaelic League in Galway. He was a member of the Irish Volunteers from 1917 to 1921.
Thomas Kelly, sometimes known as Tom Kelly, was an Irish Sinn Féin and later Fianna Fáil politician. He was a book and picture dealer before entering politics. He was a founder member of Sinn Féin and was elected to Dublin City Council. Kelly was arrested after the 1916 Easter Rising and sent to prison in England, and after becoming seriously ill, he was released back to Dublin.
Margaret Skinnider was a revolutionary and feminist born in Coatbridge, Scotland. She fought during the 1916 Easter Rising in Dublin as a sniper, among other roles, and was the only female wounded in the action. She was mentioned three times for bravery in the dispatches sent to the Dublin GPO. Sadhbh Walsche in The New York Times refers to her as "the schoolteacher turned sniper."
Jane "Jennie" Wyse Power was an Irish activist, feminist, politician and businesswoman. She was a founder member of Sinn Féin and also of Inghinidhe na hÉireann. She rose in the ranks to become one of the most important women of the revolution. President of Cumann na mBan, she left the radicalised party and formed a new organisation called Cumann na Saoirse, holding several senior posts in the Dáil during the Free State.
Liam Mac an Ultaigh of Dublin is an Irish Nationalist and was Chief Scout of the Fianna Éireann from 1965. In such tenure, Mac an Ultaigh is most recognized for his work on the Committee that under his administration drafted the Fianna Handbook’s 3rd or 1965 edition, which uniquely of the editions attempts to chronicle the organization’s history. Notably, this thorough and well documented Handbook history conclusively disputes traditional histories, which credit the Irish Republican Brotherhood’s Bulmer Hobson with founding the “Scouts” and exposes a, possible, anti-feminist bias in the traditional histories. The 3rd Handbook in its section “The History and Tradition of the Fianna Éireann” at its pages 24–26 credits instead the Sinn Féin’s Constance Markievicz or “the Countess Markievicz” with founding “Na Fianna Éireann”. As already noted in the Wikipedia article Fianna Éireann, Patrick Pearse has stated that the creation of Fianna Éireann was historically as important to the liberation of Southern and Western Ireland from British rule and the founding of the Irish Free State and, later, the Republic of Ireland as was the creation of the Irish Volunteers in 1913. The paramilitary Fianna Éireann youth Scouts were involved particularly with gun running commencing with the 1916 Easter Rising and later in combat, particularly in Dublin, during the Civil War period of 1922-1924.
Perhaps the most awkward arrest Wheeler made was Countess Markievicz, his wife’s first cousin.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Constance Markievicz .|
|Parliament of the United Kingdom|
(Irish Parliamentary Party)
| Sinn Féin MP for Dublin St Patrick's |
|New constituency|| Sinn Féin Teachta Dála for Dublin St Patrick's |
|New constituency|| Sinn Féin Teachta Dála for Dublin South |
New seat in constituency
| Sinn Féin Teachta Dála for Dublin South|
as a Fianna Fáil TD
as a Sinn Féin TD
| Fianna Fáil Teachta Dála for Dublin South|
(Cumann na nGaedheal)
|New office|| Minister for Labour |