• December 2003
    • 8 December
      Room MD021
      University of Ulster, Magee Campus
      Northland Road
      Contact – The Cultural Development office on 028 7137 5658 

      Robert Emmet, the romantic hero of the 1803 Irish uprising, is the subject of a lecture by Professor Marianne Elliot on Monday 8th December at 5.30 pm. Professor Elliot, one of Ireland’s leading historians and author of the recently published Robert Emmet: The Making of a Legend, has studied the fact and fiction surrounding Emmet and aims to separate the man from the myth. The lecture, presented by the Academy for Irish Cultural Heritages, will take place in Room MD021 at the Magee campus and admission is free.

      The myth of Emmet has fuelled Irish nationalism for two centuries. His extreme youth, his composure in the face of death, his tragic love story and his ultimate execution all contributed to the development of his legendary status. His speech from the dock – “when my country takes her place around the nations of the earth, then and only then may her epitaph be written” – is among the great cri de couers of the republican movement and was the romantic inspiration for the legend that built up around him.

      In her lecture Elliot, award-winning biographer of Wolfe Tone and Director of the Institute of Irish Studies at Liverpool, will draw on material from her book, recently described as “the definitive, thrilling account of his life and legend”

      Everyone is welcome to attend.

Earlier Commemorations

February 2003

  • 14 February
  • Lecture: ‘Robert Emmet – Eloquence and Love’ was given by Patrick M. Geoghegan (Department of Modern History, Trinity College Dublin), author of ‘Robert Emmet: A Life’ Gill & Macmillan [Dublin] (2002) at 8.00pm at An Gaeláras, 34, Great James Street, Derry, Ireland, on Friday 14th February 2003.

    The event was part of the Imbolc – Seal Síolta festival organised by Bláthanna, An Gaeláras. For further details contact 0044 2871 264132 or [email protected]

July 2003

  • 20 July
  • On July 20, 2003 a commemorative ceremony was held in St. Anne’s churchyard at Blennerville near Tralee, co. Kerry, the reputed burial place of Robert Emmet. The gathering was addressed by Emmet Kennelly, president, Kerry Historical and Archaeological Society, Terry O’Brien, Mayor of Tralee,Jim Moriarty, Chairman, St.Patrick’s G.A.A. Club, Blernnerville, and Rev. Mairt Hanley, Tralee Union of parishes of the Church of Ireland.

    M.C. was Marie Shanahan, Ballylongford Heritage and the oration was given by Padraig O Concubhair, vice-president of the Kerry Historical Society.

    Eadaoin O’Hanlon, Tarbert played the traditional lament “Turas Oisin go Tir na nOg” on the violin and her sister Una sang “O Breathe not his name” and “She is far from the land” by Thomas Moore.

    After the ceremony, in St. Patrick’s club house, Gabriel FitzMaurice, the well-known poet, launched Padraig O Concubhair’s latest book, ” A Visionary Enthusiast-Robert Emmet and his Kerry Connections.” The launch was preceded by a short dramatic piece -“The true story of Robert Emmet” in which Gabriel and Padraig were joined by the O’Hanlon sisters and Fiona O’Connor.

September 2003

  • 14 September
  • Dublin trade unionist laid a wreath at Bullys Acre [Royal Hospital Kilmainham] on Sunday 14 September at 1pm. In an unmarked grave there lie the remains of the workers and trade unionists who went to the scaffold with Emmet. For further information contact Fergus Whelan [email protected]
  • 17 September
    A short ceremony to mark the 200th anniversary of Robert Emmet’s execution and the restoration of the Robert Emmet statue in Washington, DC was held at the statue on Wednesday 17 September 2003. The Irish Ambassador to the United States, Mr. Noel Fahey, the Director of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Dr. Elizabeth Broun and the author of a recently published Irish book on Robert Emmet and the Rebellion of 1803, Mr. Ruan O’Donnell, were present. Representatives of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, who for many years have been active in commemorating the important role of Robert Emmet in Irish history, will also be present. For more information, please visit the website of the American Foundation for Irish Heritage.
  • 19 September
    The Robert Emmet Society of Emmetsburg, IA observed the death of the community’s namesake in a ceremony at 9:00 am, Friday, September 19th at the site of his statue on the Courthouse Square.  September 20, 2003 was declared ‘Robert Emmet Day’ in Emmetsburg.
  • 20 September
    The Screig Gallery (Fintown, Donegal) opened an exhibition on Sept. 20th, 2003 – the 200th anniversary of Robert Emmet’s execution.  The exhibition featured new works as well as archival material by Emmet and the 1803 Rising.  To Commemorate the legacy of Robert Emmet the Screig Gallery invited submissions of new art works.  For more information, please see
    Click here to view a post card of Robert Emmet (circa 1917) provided the Screig Gallery.

October 2003

  • 23 October
    On Thursday October 23rd. in Listowel Llibrary, Councillor Ned O’Sullivan, Cathaoirleach of the Cultural Sub-Committee of Kerry County Council opened an exhibition of books,photographs and other material connected with Robert Emmet and the bi-centennial commoration. This Exhibition was arranged by Kerry County Council in co-operation with Ballylongford Heritage and among the attendance were Kathleen Browne, County Llibrarian, GerryO’Leary, past president Kerry Historical and Archaelogical Society, Father Pat. Crean-Lynch, Curate, Listowel parish, and Vincent Carmody Listowel Emmet’s Gaelic Football Club.
    Padraig O Concubhair, author of the book “A Visionary Enthusiast- Robert Emmet and his Kerry Connections” gave a short talk on Emmet’s life and legacy.
    Patriotic music was provided by Eadaoin and Caitriona O’Hanlon, Dooncaha, Tabert.

    The exhibition ran for the following three weeks and attracted many visitors and much favourable comment. It is hoped to also stage the exhibition in the County Headquarters in Tralee.

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