The Price of Loyalty: Southern Irish Loyalists and the Work of the Irish Grants Committee
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In the years between 1919 and 1923 Ireland experienced significant political and social upheavals, most notably the partitioning of the country and the end of British rule in the south following an armed struggle for independence. The division of Ireland resulted in the creation of political minorities on either side of the border; while unionist Northern Ireland found itself home to a sizable nationalist community, the independent Irish Free State inherited a smaller number of loyalists. Although the nationalist population of Northern Ireland has received considerable attention from historians, until very recently, southern Irish loyalists were largely ignored in the historiography of the Irish Revolution and the Irish Free State. Historians are now demonstrating greater interest in the experiences of southern loyalists, but the loyalist community continues to be defined largely through its relationship with the nationalist majority. This study will consider loyalists on their own terms, using sources originating from the loyalist community.