P. S. O'Hegarty (1879-1955), born and educated in Cork, was an active member of the Gaelic League and other Irish nationalist organisations as a young man. He worked as a civil servant in London between 1902 and 1913 and was Secretary of the Department of Posts and Telegraphs of the new Irish Free State from 1922 until his retirement in 1944. A prolific writer, he founded the Irish Bookshop in Dawson Street, Dublin. Tom Garvin is Professor Emeritus of Politics at University College Dublin. Fearghal McGarry is a lecturer in Modern Irish History at Queen's University Belfast.
The Centenary Classics series examines the fascinating time of change and evolution in the Ireland of 100 years ago during the 1916-23 revolutionary period. Each volume is introduced by Fearghal McGarry who sets the scene of this important period in Ireland's history. The Victory of Sinn Fein, originally published in 1924, is an eyewitness account of events in Ireland from the Easter Rising of 1913 until 1923. It is written from a now almost forgotten viewpoint - that of the Irish Republican Brotherhood. O'Hegarty's heroes were Arthur Griffith and Michael Collins and he took the Pro-Treaty side in 1921, strongly opposing those who assumed a continuing mandate for force after ratification of the Treaty. The book contains vivid character sketches of Griffith, Collins and de Valera, and as Tom Garvin writes in his introduction 'it is...written with enormous passion, verve and energy; it reads like a thriller.'
The Insurrection of 1916
The Re-Emergence of Sinn Fein (1916-18)
The Irish Republican Brotherhood (1858-1916)
De Valera (1916-19)
Mick Collins (1909-21)
Dail Eireann (1919)
The Sinn Fein Policy in Practice (1919-1921)
The Black-and-Tan War
The New Griffith (1916-21)
The Crime of the Ulster Boycott (1920)
The Moral Collapse (1920-21)
The Surrender of England
The Great Betrayal
The Great Mistake
The Great Talk
The Position Created by the Truce and the Treaty
The Furies (1922)
After the Ratification
The Irregulars, Devil Era
War against the Irish People
The Death of Griffith
Michael Collins (September 1922)
Victory of the People
The Humorous Side
The Responsibility of Mr De Valera
The Irish Free State
How it Strikes a Contemporary
The Future of Ireland
Appendix II, Appendix III.
‘These titles are not the usual “classics” of the period often thought of, but each gives a selection of vivid, and in some cases such as that of Darrell Figgis, almost forgotten experiences of life and politics.’
The Irish Catholic
'Greater familiarity with these sources — including the range of evocative first-hand accounts spanning the revolutionary decade from the Ulster crisis to the Civil War published as part of UCD Press’s new Centenary Classics series — should complicate as well as inform commemoration in 2016.
Although the achievements of the founding generation will be honoured and, inevitably, appropriated, the urge to celebrate independence should be tempered by an unsentimental understanding of the process by which it was achieved.'
21 March 2016
'UCD Press’s new ‘Centenary Classics’ series makes available eye-witness accounts of key revolutionary episodes including the Ulster crisis; the aftermath of 1916; the rise of Sinn Féin; the War of Independence; the Treaty split; and the Civil War. These provide first-hand perspectives on such topics as the significance of sectarian divisions; the impact of imprisonment on republicanism; the importance of popular mobilisation and guerrilla warfare; and the conflict’s divisive legacy.
These accounts offer many insights into the influences that shaped the revolutionary generation. The value of these texts does not lie solely in the factual light they shed on past events, they illuminate mentalities, as well as the memory of the revolution, a growing area of research.
These stories could be ‘made into a patchwork quilt from memory’. This aim alone provides a compelling reason to ensure the wider availability of eye-witness accounts, particularly during a period of commemoration in which politicians and others will claim to speak on their behalf.'
Fearghal McGarry, Queen's University Belfast
'These contemporary accounts by well known personalities of historical events and attitudes have an immediacy that conventional histories do not have. Introductions by modern historians provide additional historical background and, with hindsight, objectivity.'
'Scholars of nineteenth-century Irish and Irish-American politics should reacquaint themselves with these classics, part of a long running and immensely useful series from University College Dublin Press.'
Irish Literary Supplement
THE VICTORY OF SINN FEIN
'P. S. Hegarty's bitter and ferocious The Victory of Sinn Féin was published in 1924 in the immediate aftermath of the Civil War. What makes it so gripping is the clarity with which it reflects a generally obscured aspect of the events it describes - the devastation and demoralisation of Irish nationalism by the Civil War. O'Hegarty's book is remarkable because of its point of view. You could quote long passages of it and if you did not identify the author most people would assume that they were written by a diehard unionist or a contemporary revisionist.'
Fintan O'Toole, Irish Times
Those who come to The Victory of Sinn Féin knowing its reputation as an anti-Republican diatribe and attack on Republican women will be surprised by its exultant celebration of the achievement of statehood.'
Patrick Maume, Queen's University, Belfast
Irish Political Studies
'written with the urgency of troubled times and still retain[s its] freshness and argumentative force: excellent material for seminar discussions ... well introduced by Garvin. His biographical essays are thoughtful, useful, and adopt an engaging combative stance on behalf of the writers. A welcome series. They are hardily and handsomely constructed: a credit to their publisher.'
Peter Hart, Queen's University Belfast
Irish Studies Review