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Another outcome of 1916? May 21, 2016

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.

Really good overview on RTÉ of daylight saving time and how it was introduced into Ireland in May 1916. This is by Ben Shorten and appears to be in collaboration with Boston College. Some fascinating quotes which give a sense, perhaps, of how the events of earlier that year inflected matters after:

Professor Luke Gibbons of Maynooth University has observed that the timing of the abolition of Irish time almost makes it seem like it was done in retaliation for the events in Dublin during Easter 1916.

That may be a stretch, but this quote from John Dillon in the House of Commons gives pause:

“We have managed to get along for 600 or 7000 years… without assimilating our time to that of GB. We have got along very well. It reminds us that we are coming into a strange country.”

And it underlines the democratic deficit in relation to issues pertaining to this island in relation to the House of Commons:

Despite opposition from Dillon and his Irish Parliamentary Party colleagues, the bill passed and Dublin time was lost to history, overshadowed by the more dramatic events that had preceded it in 1916 – the Easter Rising and the Battle of the Somme.

That such a fundamental change in the very fabric of life could be introduced and not prevented by Irish parliamentarians seems to me to exemplify how marginal Irish political influence actually was.

Anyhow, good stuff.


1. oglach - May 21, 2016

Bizarre and fascinating bit of history. Thanks for posting.


2. benmadigan - May 21, 2016

saw in the 1916 exhibition in the Museum that Irish time was always 30 -40 mins odd different to British time and that Britain put Ireland onto British time in May 1916 to facilitate and co-ordinate troop movements for post-Rising anti-insurgency suppression.


3. CL - May 21, 2016

An older friend of mine here tells me that back in the day ‘republican time’ was always a half hour later than regular time; an event, say a commemoration, would be set to commence at a certain time, but nobody would show up until a half hour later.


Starkadder - May 22, 2016

That’s interesting. I wonder was there any attempt to change the
time back after independence?

I believe part of the reason for DST being introducted was safety
(so children wouldn’t be going to school in the dark).


4. roddy - May 21, 2016

“Republican time” is still very much in operation.Never saw a meeting,demo,commemoration or social to begin until at least 40 minutes after the appointed time.Applies to everday life in Republican areas as well.An elderly aunt who spent most of her life in England once asked me to drop her off at a relatives.She asked me to lift her in “half an hour”.Well over an hour later I met her coming walking at least a mile from her relatives house.Her only admonishment to me was “I doubt that was an Irish half hour”!


5. gendjinn - May 21, 2016

Enough Irish came to San Francisco that it too changed to “Irish time”. Only movies and plays ever start on time, parties are always get the first guests 30 to 40 mins after it starts.


6. Dr. Nightdub - May 21, 2016

My da told me that due to the suspension of summer time, daylight saving time or something during WW2, there was an hour’s time difference between Belfast and Dublin.


7. CL - May 21, 2016

Then there’s this:


8. Liberius - May 22, 2016

As for daylight saving, the opposition came from rural agricultural communities.

Rev RS Devane, writing in 1939, argues that daylight saving was an example of the producers of the national wealth of Ireland being sacrificed to “economic parasites” in towns and cities.

The two measures taken together can be seen as an attempt to undermine Ireland’s sense of national identity and, in the process, to relegate its primary industry to second class status.

I know I’m not alone amongst the CLR crowd in having sleep problems so I can’t be alone in finding the economic needs of farmers used as an argument against having sun rises at more reasonable hours a bit difficult to take, it’s as if people’s health (and the knock-on economic consequences of ill and jaded people) doesn’t matter when weighed against the need to milk Friesians in the early morning.

Birdsong, bloody birdsong, won’t somebody please give me CET…


9. Jim Monaghan - May 22, 2016

My Mom told me of a parish in her native county, Longford, which had it’s own time. I gather that standard time owes much to the need for it for rail timetables.


10. 6to5against - May 22, 2016

I’ve heard of a priest in cavan who stuck with the half hour difference for several years. Only he called it ‘God’s time’


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