Why was England so interested in conquering Ireland?
(07-26-2009, 06:17 PM)MitOS Wrote:
(07-24-2009, 07:51 PM)Tobri Wrote: I have been reading up on English history (bought a book about the Civil War not too long ago), and I am curious to see opinions. Why exactly was England practically from her unification until the early 20th century so hell bent on conquering Ireland? Heck they still own 1/4 of the place in the 21st century - but I suppose all those centuries of English plantations and Scottish refugees arriving Northern Ireland is more of it's own entity now when compared to the rest of Ireland.

Is the soil there good or something or is it simply because England was power thirsty and France was too powerful so they settled for their neighbor? I can't see any other practical reason for England (medieval to empire) to want to own an economically poor Island with inhabitants hostile to foreign occupation. Especially post reformation which like tripled the Irish dislike of England when they shut down the Irish monasteries and suppressed the Church there etc... what benefit did England gain?

They were doing the same thing the French were, the Austrians, the Russians, the Spanish etc etc etc.

Each of the European Kingdoms were trying the recreate the Roman Empire or at least make their own kingdom larger and greater for their heirs.  The Low Countries, Holland and Belgium were ruled at different points by the French the Spanish the English as well as the Dutch.  Much of the principalities of Germany had much the same sort of history.  The Irish only had two possible invaders the English and the Scots.  If Scotland had been a larger and more powerful country than it was there is little doubt they would have challenged the English rule in Ireland outright.  As it was they cooperated with the English and invaded Ireland secondhand.

Catholics have a tendency to view this in terms of the Protestant Revolution.  No doubt that played a role but not the deciding one since the contest began long before Martin Luther started his trouble.  It goes back to the Middle Ages when there was only one Church and no schism.  The English didn’t even start it.  Remember the Pagan Irish pirates were raiding the English coast taking English subjects as slaves.

They got more than they bargained with one slave.

You may know him as Saint Patrick.
I think the Vikings gave the Brits all they could handle as well and their descendents the Normans eventually lead the conquest of the English in 1066.

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Re: Why was England so interested in conquering Ireland? - by alaric - 07-26-2009, 08:57 PM

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