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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:'The magna hibernia': Irish diplomatic missions to South Africa, 1921
Author:Reilly, Ciaran
Periodical:South African Historical Journal (ISSN 1726-1686)
Geographic terms:South Africa
Subjects:international relations
External link:https://doi.org/10.1080/02582473.2015.1074269
Abstract:In 1921, during the height of the Irish War of Independence, two Irish diplomats were sent to South Africa as representatives of the Provisional government or Dail Éireann. Colonel Maurice Moore and Patrick Little's missions coincided with the zenith of the Irish Republican Association of South Africa (IRASA), a group who had more than 13 branches located throughout the country. The primary motive behind the visit of the Irish envoys was to influence the stance which Jan Christian Smuts would take at the Imperial Conference in London in June of that year. While on the one hand Moore would open up discussions with Smuts and other South African politicians, Little on the other, toured the country informing the Irish diaspora of the situation in Ireland. Moreover, his presence and speeches also pushed the so-called 'Irish question' into South African affairs, if only briefly. Determined to maintain his influence internally, Smuts responded by undertaking a personal visit to Dublin and actively played a role in the Anglo-Irish Treaty negotiations. The visit of Moore and Little, and by extension the role of the IRASA and Smuts, offers a transnational perspective of the Irish revolution. Notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]