Foundation Of The Volunteers

The Irish Volunteers, Óglaigh na hÉireann, were founded on 25 November 1913 at a public meeting held in the Rotunda Rink in Dublin. The founders included The O’Rahilly, a member of the governing body of the Gaelic League, Eoin Mac Néill, Professor of Early and Mediaeval Irish History at University College Dublin, and Patrick Pearse, another prominent member of the Gaelic League.

The movement caught the public imagination so that by July 1914 the Volunteers numbered some 180,000 members. The Volunteers were formed against a background of rising militancy in Ireland. The spur for this was the Irish Home Rule Bill of 1912 to which the Unionists were vehemently opposed.

As a result of Unionist opposition to Home Rule, the Ulster Volunteer Force was created and by 1913 had been organised into a force of nearly 100,000 men. Inspired by the example of Ulster, the Irish Volunteers were founded.


Read abaout The 1916 Easter Rising

The Badge Design

The Badge design (common to all Corps and Services and all orders of dress) is derived from the badge of the Irish Volunteers and was designed by Professor Eoin MacNeill, Chairman of the National Executive of the Irish Volunteers. This badge was originally adopted by the Irish Volunteers in October 1914. [Read more]