Ailtirí na hAiséirghe

Ailtirí na hAiséirghe (Irish pronunciation: [ˈalʲtʲi̞ɾʲiː n̪ˠə ˈhaʃeːɾʲiː], meaning "Architects of the Resurrection") was a minor radical nationalist and fascist political party in Ireland, founded by Gearóid Ó Cuinneagáin in March 1942.[1] The party sought to form a totalitarian Irish Christian corporatist state[2] and its sympathies were with the Axis powers in World War II. It was one of a wave of minor far right parties in 1940s Ireland, like the Monetary Reform Party, that failed to achieve mainstream success.[3]

Ailtirí na hAiséirghe
FounderGearóid Ó Cuinneagáin
FoundedMarch 1942
Political positionFar-right
ReligionRoman Catholicism
ColoursDark Green


The group was founded out of a branch of the Gaelic League established by Ó Cuinneagáin in 1940. He had left a job in the civil service, and moved to Donegal in order to become fluent in Irish; he established Craobh na h-Aiséirí (Branch of the Resurrection) as a militant and active wing of the League that grew rapidly, holding public events as well as organising Irish language classes. At the time many ideas of the far right, especially corporatism were in vogue in Ireland, even with ministers of the democratically elected Irish government, and seemed to chime well with Catholic social teaching and these ideas were mixed with more traditional Irish nationalism and especially a hostility to the partition of Ireland.

By March 1942, though, Ó Cuinneagáin wished for a wider and more explicitly political organisation and so established the party as an openly fascist party with the aim of establishing him as the single leader of Ireland. [4]

The Department of Justice estimated the party's Dublin city membership after six months in existence to be about 30 or 40, with very few supporters outside Dublin.[5]

After an internal split in late 1945, Aiséirghe's influence weakened. It was in some respects overtaken by the radical Clann na Poblachta, which shared some of its economic and cultural theories but without the anti-democratic and anti-Semitic elements.[6]

On the morning of 14 May 1949, posters saying “Arm Now to Take the North.” were put up by the party in Dublin and other large towns. The Gardaí responded by tearing down the posters.[7]

Ailtirí na hAiséirghe held its last formal meeting in 1958, though the party newspaper, Aiséirghe, continued to appear until the early 1970s.[3]


The party wished to create a fascist one-party state ruled by a leader known as a 'Ceannaire'. Aiséirghe promised full employment, an end to emigration (by making it a criminal offence to leave the country), discrimination against Jews and freemasons, and the reconquest of Northern Ireland by a massive conscript army. It also promised to make the use of the English language in public illegal after five years in power.[8]

The party intended for the state to stay out of World War II until the participants were worn out, and for Ireland to then emerge as a spiritual leader to the world.[9]

A group called "Aontacht na gCeilteach" (Celtic Unity) was established in November 1942, to promote a pan-Celtic vision. It was headed by Éamonn Mac Murchadha. MI5 believed it to be a front for Ailtirí na hAiséirghe, intended to serve as "a rallying point for Irish, Scottish, Welsh and Breton nationalists". The group had the same postal address as the party. At its foundation the group stated that "the present system is utterly repugnant to the Celtic conception of life" and called for a new order based upon a "distinctive celtic philosophy". Ailtiri na hAiseirghe itself had a pan-celtic vision and had established contacts with pro-Welsh independence political party Plaid Cymru and Scottish independence activist Wendy Wood. One day the party covered South Dublin city with posters saying "Rhyddid i gCymru" (Freedom for Wales).[10]

Political support

Its supporters included former Cumann na nGaedheal government ministers Ernest Blythe and James Joseph Walsh (Blythe had also been a leading member of the Blueshirts), and Monetary Reform Party TD Oliver J. Flanagan.[11] Seán Treacy,[12] the future Labour Party TD and Ceann Comhairle of Dáil Éireann, was a party member in the 1940s, as were the novelist Brian Cleeve,[13] the Daoist philosopher Wei Wu Wei[14] and the broadcaster and author Breandán Ó hEithir.[12] Although never a member, Seán South was familiar with the group's publications.[15] Other sources have stated that South was either a member or supporter of Ailtirí na hAiséirghe.[16]

Electoral history

The party obtained no seats in the 1943 and 1944 general elections.[17] In the 1945 local government elections, however, Aiséirghe candidates won nine seats (out of 31 contested), gaining a total of more than 11,000 first-preference votes.[3]

General election results

Election Seats won ± Position First Pref votes %
0 / 144
Increase Increase7th 3,137 0.2%
0 / 144
Increase Increase7th 5,809 0.5%
0 / 144
Decrease Decrease8th 322 0.0%



  • Douglas, R. M. (2009). Architects of the Resurrection: Ailtirí na hAiséirghe and the Fascist 'New Order' in Ireland. Manchester University Press. ISBN 0-7190-7998-5.


  1. ^ British Spies and Irish Rebels, Paul McMahon
  2. ^ Ó Drisceoil, Donal (1996). Censorship in Ireland, 1939-1945. Cork: Cork University Press. ISBN 978-1-85918-074-7.
  3. ^ a b c Manning, Maurice (1972). Irish Political Parties: An Introduction. Dublin: Gill and Macmillan. ISBN 978-0-7171-0536-6.
  4. ^ That Neutral Island: A Cultural History of Ireland During the Second World War, Clair Willis, Faber and Faber, London 2007, ISBN 9780571234479, pp. 364 - 367
  5. ^
  6. ^ Douglas, R. M. "Ailtirí na hAiséirghe: Ireland's fascist New Order". History Ireland. Retrieved 6 January 2015.
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^ Architects of Resurrection: Ailtiri na hAiserighe and the fascist 'new order' in Ireland by R. M. Douglas (pg 271)
  11. ^ Eoin O'Duffy, Fearghal McGarry
  12. ^ a b Douglas (2009), p. 250
  13. ^ Douglas (2009), p. 163
  14. ^ Douglas (2009), pp. 154-5
  15. ^ Douglas 2009, pp. 285-7
  16. ^
  17. ^ Defending Ireland: the Irish state and its enemies, Eunan O'Halpin

Further reading

1942 in Ireland

Events from the year 1942 in Ireland.

1944 Irish general election

The Irish general election of 1944 was held on 30 May 1944, having been called on 9 May by President Douglas Hyde on the advice of Taoiseach Éamon de Valera. The general election took place in 34 parliamentary constituencies for 138 seats in Dáil Éireann, the lower house of the Oireachtas (parliament). Fianna Fáil won an overall majority, and when the newly elected members of the 12th Dáil assembled on 9 June, de Valera was re-elected Taoiseach at the head of a majority government.

The election was fought while the Emergency Powers Act 1939 was still in force.


Aiséirí (Irish: Aiséirģe [aʃˈeːɾʲiː]; "Resurrection") was a political newspaper, published in Dublin, Ireland, from 1943 until 1973.

The newspaper was founded by Gearóid Ó Cuinneagáin as the party organ of Ailtirí na hAiséirghe. This was a minor radical nationalist and fascist political party, founded in 1942. It sought to form a totalitarian Irish Christian corporatist state. The party obtained no seats in the 1943 and 1944 general elections and gradually weakened after a split in 1945. It finished up in 1958, but the newspaper continued to be published.


The Army Comrades Association (ACA), later the National Guard, then Young Ireland and finally League of Youth, but better known by the nickname The Blueshirts (Irish: Na Léinte Gorma), was a Right-wing movement in the Irish Free State in the early 1930s. The organisation provided physical protection for political groups such as Cumann na nGaedheal from intimidation and attack by the anti-Treaty IRA. Some former members went on to fight for the Nationalists in the Spanish Civil War. (It had been dissolved before the civil war started.)

Most of the political parties whose meetings the Blueshirts protected would merge to become Fine Gael, and members of that party are still sometimes nicknamed "Blueshirts".

Cumann na Poblachta

Cumann na Poblachta (Irish pronunciation: [kˠumˠən̪ˠ n̪ˠə pˠɔbˠɫəxt̪ˠə]; League of the Republic in English) was an Irish republican political party.

The party was founded on 15 March 1922 by Éamon de Valera. It opposed the Anglo-Irish Treaty and was composed of the anti-Treaty wing of Sinn Féin. The party did contest the 1922 Irish general election but, in accordance with the Collins/De Valera Pact, under the Sinn Féin banner like their opponents.

The party commonly appended the title The Republican Party to its name. This subtitle was later adopted by the Fianna Fáil party at its foundation in 1926.

Its headquarters was at 23 Suffolk street. The party's offices served as a meeting place for the Anti-treaty IRA.In 1923, after the pro-Treaty wing of Sinn Féin renamed itself as Cumann na nGaedheal, Cumann na Poblachta continued to use the Sinn Féin name.

Córas na Poblachta

Córas na Poblachta (Irish pronunciation: [kˠoːɾəs̪ˠ n̪ˠə pʷɔbʷɫəxt̪ˠə] – English: Republican System) was a minor Irish republican political party founded in 1940.

Gearóid Ó Cuinneagáin

Gearóid Ó Cuinneagáin (born Gerald Cunningham; 1910–1991) was an Irish far right politician born in Belfast, Ireland.

Greenshirts (National Corporate Party)

The Greenshirts were members of the fascist National Corporate Party (NCP) in Ireland in the 1930s. The NCP was founded by Eoin O'Duffy after he broke from the Fine Gael party in 1935. The Greenshirts were different from the better known Blueshirts, O'Duffy's followers before he left Fine Gael. Only eighty of the Blueshirts later became Greenshirts. It was an influence to a later fascist party, Ailtirí na hAiséirghe.

In 1936 O'Duffy led a volunteer Irish Brigade to fight for the Nationalists in the Spanish Civil War, and retired on his return in 1937. Without him, both the Greenshirts and NCP faded away.

Home Government Association

The Home Government Association was a pressure group launched by Isaac Butt in support of home rule for Ireland at a meeting in Bilton's Hotel, Dublin, on 19 May 1870.

The meeting was attended or supported by sixty-one people of different political and religious persuasions, including six Fenians, Butt seemingly having consulted with the Irish Republican Brotherhood before launching his initiative. Its inaugural public meeting was held on 1 September 1870. Active in campaigning in several elections for the association was P. F. Johnson.

It became the Home Rule League in 1873.

Independent Health Alliance

The Independent Health Alliance was an electoral alliance which contested the 2002 Irish general election. The Alliance campaigned on the provision of health services in Ireland, which was a constant criticism of the Fianna Fáil–Progressive Democrats coalition government. It also campaigned for disability rights.

The Alliance fielded eight candidates for the 2002 election including Offaly County Councillor Molly Buckley, Dublin City Councillor Finian McGrath and former Limerick Hurling manager Tom Ryan. Only Finian McGrath was elected in Dublin North-Central. The Alliance broke up shortly afterwards.

Irish Monetary Reform Association

The Irish Monetary Reform Association (also known as the Monetary Reform Party) was a minor Irish political party of the 1940s. It was little more than an electoral vehicle for Oliver J. Flanagan, the long-serving TD for the constituency of Laois–Offaly. As such, it is difficult to draw conclusions about the party independent from those about Flanagan himself. Monetary Reform can be seen as the most successful of a wave of minor far right parties in 1940s Ireland, like Ailtirí na hAiséirighe. Flanagan played on certain themes of the Social Credit movement, which accentuated his image as an anti-Semitic politician.

Letterkenny Residents Party

Letterkenny Residents Party was an unregistered minor political party in Ireland. It was founded and registered in 2008 to contest the 2009 local elections in Letterkenny. It combined local residents with Francis McCafferty who polled 64 votes standing for the Socialist Party in the 2004 council election. The party's only candidate, Tom Crossan, polled 417 votes and succeeded in being elected to Letterkenny Town Council.As of 2015, it is no longer a registered political party.

List of fascist movements by country G–M

A list of political parties, organizations, and movements adhering to various forms of fascist ideology, part of the list of fascist movements by country.

National Corporate Party

The National Corporate Party (Irish: Páirtí Náisiúnta Corparáidíoch, PNC) was a fascist political party in Ireland founded by General Eoin O'Duffy in June 1935 at a meeting of 500. It split from Fine Gael when O'Duffy was removed as leader of that party, which had been founded by the merger of O'Duffy's Blueshirts, formally known as the National Guard or Army Comrades Association, with Cumann na nGaedheal, and the National Centre Party.The National Corporate Party wished to establish a corporate state in Ireland and was strongly anti-communist. Its military wing was the Greenshirts. The party raised funds through public dances. Unlike the Blueshirts, whose aim had been the establishment of a corporate state while remaining within the British Commonwealth in order to appease moderates within Fine Gael, the National Corporate Party was committed to the establishment of a republic outside of the British Empire with O'Duffy presenting his party as the true successor to the ideals of the Easter Rising. The party also committed itself to the preservation and promotion of the Irish language and Gaelic culture, something that would be echoed by a later fascist party in Ireland, Ailtirí na hAiséirghe.It failed to gain much support however, with the majority of Fine Gael members remaining loyal to that party and O'Duffy only securing a handful of loyal supporters for his group.O'Duffy left Ireland in 1936 to become involved in the Spanish Civil War, a fact which led to further decline in the National Corporate Party. The party was defunct by 1937.

National Democratic Party (Ireland)

The National Democratic Party was a minor party in the Irish Free State representing small farming interests.

The Farmers' Party was a significant force in early 1920s politics in Ireland, but it was associated with middle-class farmers with larger holdings. Small-scale farmers who felt that the Farmers' Party did not represent them founded the National Democratic Party early in 1923, aiming to also attract support from poor labourers and other individuals in rural areas.The party announced that it would stand fifteen candidates at the 1923 general election, Ultimately, it stood only four candidates: Joseph O'Mahony in Cork West, Joseph Delaney and Patrick Belton in Laois–Offaly, and Seán O'Farrell in Longford–Westmeath. They took only 4,966 votes between them, and none were elected. The party disbanded soon after the election.

Poblacht Chríostúil

Poblacht Chríostúil (Irish pronunciation: [pˠoɔbˠlˠəxt̪ˠ xɾʲiːsˠɔt̪ˠuːlʲ], meaning "Christian Republic") was a small political party in Cork, in the mid-1960s. The party stood Sylvester Cotter, in the 1965 Mid-Cork Dáil by election, they also stood Cotter in Mid-Cork and Alexander Miller in the Cork Borough in the 1966 general election, but they were not elected. Eoghan Harris campaigned for the party and spoke at its rallies.

Seán Treacy (politician)

Seán Daniel Treacy (22 September 1923 – 23 March 2018) was an Irish Labour Party politician who served as Ceann Comhairle of Dáil Éireann from 1987 to 1997 and 1973 to 1977. He served as a Teachta Dála (TD) for the Tipperary South constituency from 1961 to 1997 and a Member of the European Parliament (MEP) for the Munster constituency from 1981 to 1984.

Sligo/Leitrim Independent Socialist Organisation

Sligo/Leitrim Independent Socialist Organisation (SLISO) was a minor political party led by Sligo County Councillor Declan Bree. It was set up in 1974 and contested local elections to Sligo County Council and Dáil Éireann elections for the Sligo–Leitrim constituency. The group stood other candidates but Bree was the only candidate ever elected for the group. In 1991 the group merged with the Labour Party and Bree was elected as a Labour Party TD at the 1992 general election. Bree resigned from the Labour Party in 2007.

United Left (Ireland)

United Left was a left-wing political party in Ireland founded in 2013. The founders were TDs Clare Daly and Joan Collins, who had been elected at the 2011 election as members of the Socialist Party and People Before Profit Alliance respectively. United Left was added to the official register of political parties in May 2013. Its registered officers were Daly, Collins, Declan Bree of Sligo County Council and Pat Dunne of Dublin City Council, all formerly of the United Left Alliance. As of December 2015, it is no longer a registered political party.

Defunct political parties in Ireland
to 1918
post 1918

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