Proclamation Day: Huge crowd gather in DCU to celebrate 1916

DCU marked the centenary of the 1916 Easter Rising on Proclamation Day,  March 15th, by hosting a special flag-raising ceremony.

In the week following Seachtain na Gaeilge, the university joined schools and colleges across the country in marking Proclamation Day.  Professor John Doyle, Executive Dean, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, hosted the ceremony.

Alastair Dennehy, DCU Drama Society’s Education Officer, re-enacted the reading of the Proclamation to a crowd of around 150 people. Following the reading Doyle and other DCU staff members raised the tricolour to cheers from the crowd.

During the ceremony Doyle explored why the Irish people pay homage to the people fighting in the 1916 Rising but neglect to annually commemorate the day the state declared its independence in 1922.

He followed by comparing the Irish people with the French who celebrate Bastille Day, an important event in the French Revolution, instead of celebrating the declaration of the Fifth Republic.

The ceremony concluded inside the nursing building with refreshments.

Thousands of schools participated in the day with almost every schoolchild playing a part in drawing up their school’s proclamation. Hundreds of tweets were posted with the hashtag #ProclamationDay to mark the occasion.

The event was part of the 1916 Commemorative Programme and was their biggest event so far. The programme’s next major events will take place on Easter Sunday and Easter Monday with a commemoration ceremony and parade outside the General Post Office on O’Connell Street.

Other events taking place are wreath laying ceremonies in Kilmainham Gaol and Glasnevin Cemetary and a State reception in Dublin Castle where around 2,000 relatives of those who took part in the rising are invited to join the Taoiseach and other state figures to “remember, reflect and reimagine”.

Andrew Byrne

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