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The earliest archaeological evidence suggests that people had lived in the region since 6000 BC. It also indicates that during 3500 BC, settlers had already begun using stone tools for agriculture. In 700 BC, the Celtic-speaking Gael tribe of Western Europe settled in Ireland and dominated the region for the next 2000 years.
During the 9th century AD, the Vikings invaded and established settlements which resulted into the building of major cities such as the capital of Dublin. The Vikings faced opposition from the Celts that lead to a 200-year-long war between the two. The clashes ended in 1014, when both groups decided to unite. However, peace was short lived and soon, Ireland was divided into many kingdoms.
In 1170, Norman Vikings from England invaded the island and made the region an English territory. In the 1600s, Protestantism became England's official religion and the English tried to impose it to the Irish people who were mostly Roman Catholics.
In 1820, British laws were implemented in Ireland, which were biased against the Roman Catholics. By 1829, the laws were overturned but the Irish still wanted their independence. A mass movement resulted in 1830 but the Catholics suffered severe famine from 1841 to 1851, resulting to starvation, disease, and mass emigration mostly to the United States.
In the early 20th century, the Irish Catholics began to rise again, leading to violent uprising, and the revolution eventually resulted to the Irish Free State in 1922.
Where is Ireland
Ireland is located in northwestern Europe. It is the second biggest island in the continent, coming only next to Great Britain. The country makes up the British Isles with Great Britain and other smaller islands in the region.
The island is encircled by the Irish Sea and the North Channel west of the United Kingdom, the Atlantic Ocean to the West, and the Celtic Sea to the South.
The Republic of Ireland is a parliamentary, representative democracy, with the President as Head of State with mostly ceremonial powers, and the Prime Minister as Head of Government. Executive power is exercised by the government, which consists of 15 cabinet members, the Prime Minister, and the Deputy Prime Minister.
Legislative power is exercised by the President of Ireland, and the bicameral national parliament that consists of the house of representatives and the senate. Judiciary power is independent from both the executive and legislative power, and is headed by the Chief Justice, who presides over the Supreme Court of Ireland.
Tourism in Ireland
Nicknamed the Emerald Isle, Ireland is known for its wide landscape of lush and green fields. Ireland is one of the most visited travel destinations in Europe. It is most famous for its well-preserved architecture, early medieval castles, as well as its vibrant night life and frequent festivals.
Dublin is the fourth most visited European capital, it boasts of a large number of pubs, excellent shopping options, and stunning architecture. The Trinity College, which is Ireland's most prestigious university, has a campus that houses majestic buildings that are over a hundred years old. The city of Killarney is an excellent starting point to the Ring of Kerry – an area renowned for ancient monuments, quaint towns and villages, and captivating scenery.
Galway is famous for its never-ending list of festivals. Nicknamed the “City of Tribes,” its largely young population boasts a Bohemian vibe. Over 50 festivals take place in the city each year. And a visit to Galway is never complete without heading to the Aran Islands – a group of mystical islands where Ireland's rural existence still thrives.
There are three UNESCO World Heritage Sites on the island: Brú na Bóinne, Skellig Michael, and the Giant's Causeway. The Bunratty Castle, the Rock of Cashel, the Cliffs of Moher, Holy Cross Abbey, Glendalough, and Clonmacnoise are some of the most popular tourist attractions in Ireland.