History the story of the past study guide




History the story of the past study guide


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History the story of the past study guide



History: the story of the past.
Herodotus: father of history.
Archive: documents
Museum: artefacts

Sources can be written, pictorial, oral, artefacts or ruins.
Primary sources: directly from past, first hand information, from the time.
Secondary sources: indirectly, second hand, after the time.

Bias: using only the evidence that supports one side.
Prejudice: judging before any evidence.
Propaganda: using the media to promote one point of view.

Fact v Opinion

Archaeology is the study of buildings and artefacts.
Finding the sites:  Aerial photography (crop marks)
Stories (Troy)
Rescue archaeology (roads and buildings)

Excavations:         Survey
Diggers (topsoil)
Sieves and brushes
Numbering artefacts

Dating:                Stratigraphy
Coins and pottery
Radiocarbon dating



a) The Mesolithic Period (middle Stone Age 7000 BC).

First settlers
Evidence: Mount Sandal in Derry.
Houses: circular, wooden frame tied at top, covered with hides grass or bushes.
Food: nomadic hunter-gatherers (wild boar, duck, deer, fish, berries). Cooked on a spit.
Clothes: hides cleaned with stone scrapers and sewn together with bone needles.
Tools and Weapons: flint stone, axes, spears, knives and scrapers.
b) The Neolithic Period (new Stone Age 4000 BC).

First farmers arrived by dugout canoe.
Evidence: Lough Gur in Limerick, Ceide Fields in Mayo and the Boyne Valley.
Houses: rectangular, posts, wattle and daub, thatched roof, hearth inside and hole for chimney in roof.
Food: farming and hunting and gathering.
Farm animals were cattle, pigs, sheep and goats.
Mattock and wooden plough in light upland soil to grow wheat and barley.
Grain ground on a saddle-stone.
Food cooked on a spit.
Clothes: same as Mesolithic.
Tools and weapons: flint stone, axes, spears, knives and scrapers. Now they are polished. Pottery is used for storing food and in burials.

Burial Customs and Religion.

Megaliths. Usually cremated and ashes put in pots inside the following:

Court Cairns (northern half, A shaped, court for ceremonies, all covered in stones).
Portal Dolmens (covered in stones, how did they lift capstone).
Passage Tombs (Newgrange, Knowth and Dowth). Cross shaped, 80 metres in diameter (Newgrange), corbelled roof, carved kerbstones, entrance stone, roof box.


c) The Bronze Age (2000 BC).

Copper Mount Gabriel in Cork. Tin Cornwall.
How did they get copper from rock?
Houses: circular, posts, wattle and daub, thatch, hearth inside and hole in roof. Ditch and fence around houses.
Food: same as Neolithic but fulachta fiadh used as well as spits and copper cauldrons.
Tools and weapons: bronze, sickles, spades axes, spears, swords.
Arts and crafts: copper and gold jewellery. Lunulae and torcs (twisted gold), fasteners, collars, bracelets and necklaces.
Burial customs and religion: wedge tombs, cist graves, stone circles (may be linked to sun’s movements), galláns (standing stones). Buried in crouched position with grave goods (afterlife). Some cremated, ashes in pots.


d) The Iron Age and the Celts (by 300 BC iron had taken over)

Evidence: Romans, Halstatt, La Tene, Christian writings and archaeological evidence.
Houses: ring-forts (raths and cashels), Crannógs (well-off?).
Hill-forts (Tara) and promontory forts (Dun Aengus). Ceremonial. Chevaux de frise
Houses built in same way as Bronze Age.
Souterrains (escape and cool food)

Family: described below in order of importance.
or Taoiseach ruled a Tuath and were appointed by the Derbfine. Fosterage in use.
The Nobles were made up of the warriors and the Aosdána. Aosdána were Brehons, Filí, Druids and craftsmen.
Commoners or Slaves (captured from other tribes)

Food: Mainly cattle but also sheep and pigs. Dairy products. Wheat (bread), oats (porridge) and barley (ale). Rotary quern. Spit and fulachta fiadh still used and also stone ovens.
Feasting important. Poems, stories, music, ficheall (chess) baire (hurling). Hero’s portion.

Clothes: wool spun and woven. Mantle.
Tools and weapons: iron smelting. Bronze and gold still use for ornaments.
Arts and crafts: Lá Tene (Switzerland), Ogham stones.
Burial customs and Religion: Lug, Bridget. Cremated and ashes put in pits or put in cist graves with a mound of stones (cairn) on top. Grave-goods included.


e) Early Christian Ireland. (Early 400s AD)

First arrived in the south-east. Some may have been slaves. Palladius sent as bishop. Patrick best known. The story of Patrick. Most Celts were Christian by 600. Celtic life continued as before but druids lost power.

Remote areas (Skellig Michael, Glendalough). Round towers (2 used). Beehive cells (clocháns). Scriptorium (Book of Kells, Cathach) manuscripts on parchment or vellum.
Monks worked in fields. Attacks by other clans, other monasteries and Vikings.

Arts and crafts:
Metalwork. Filigree (Ardagh and Derrynaflan chalices, Tara brooch)
High crosses (Muireadeach’s Cross in Monasterboice)

Irish monks abroad:
‘Island of saints and scholars’ Columcille in Iona, Columbanus in Bobbio Italy.



Controlled most of Europe and North Africa.

Evidence: ruins, coins, Latin documents.

Towns: grid pattern, Forum (marketplace), temples, amphitheatre (gladiators, Coliseum), aqueducts (water), roads (cobbled, Apian way), circus (chariot racing), sewerage system, town walls. Baths, public and private every day.
Houses:  patricians lived in houses, plebeians lived in apartments.
Private house called a domus. Atrium (open courtyard in middle). Peristylium (walled garden). Tiled roofs. Mosaic floors. Villas in country.
Apartments: called insulae. Poor tenants at top, better off in middle, shops at bottom.

Family: father totally in charge. Strict discipline. Married young (12 and 14)

Clothes: knee-length tunics. Toga for men, stola for women.

Food: bread and porridge for poor. Rich ate a lot of meat, lying down. Vomitorium.

Education: rich only. Secondary for boys only. Very strict. Stylus on wax tablets.

Leisure and Entertainment: gladiators in amphitheatres (Coliseum) emperor’s thumb.
Chariot racing in Circus Maximus. Plays in semi-circular theatres.

Work: slaves did most farming and general labouring. Poor Romans were craftsmen and shopkeepers. Middle class was architects and doctors. Wealthy became generals or senators.

The army: legions of 5000. Highly trained. Javelins, short sword, armour and shield. Strict discipline (decimation). Forts along border of empire (Hadrian’s wall).
Giant catapults and cross-bows (ballistas).

Architecture: see Renaissance. Lots of sculpture and frescoes.

Religion and death: Many gods. Jupiter (father of all gods). Neptune (sea). Mars (war). Funeral processions followed by cremation and ashes put in urns and buried.
Christians buried in catacombs.

Reasons for fall of Rome:

  1. Power struggles between those wanting to be emperor.
  2. High cost of army.
  3. Corruption.
  4. Barbarian tribes (anyone outside empire)



4. MEDIEVAL TIMES (middle ages, feudal times, dark ages)

a) General:
Fall of ancient Rome to Renaissance.
A time of war, little interest in education, plague and a reduction in population of Europe.
Feudal system: Kings granted land, called a fief, to vassals in return for soldiers. Kings, barons, knights, bishops and abbots, freemen and serfs.
Knights lived on Manors. They kept some for themselves (demesne) and rented out the rest to peasants.
Norman invasion of Britain: William the Conqueror, Battle of Hastings 1066, Bayeux Tapestry.
Norman invasion of Ireland: Rory O Connor V Dermot McMorrough king of Leinster. Asked Henry II for help. Strongbow (Richard de Clare) marries Aoife in Waterford (1169). Normans take Dublin from Vikings.

b) Castle:
Motte and Bailey castle: used early on or by poorer knights. Bailey was the courtyard. An example is Knockgraffon in Tipperary.

Stone castle: strategic location, moat, battlements, drawbridge, portcullis, gatehouse,
The Keep: great hall, solar, spiral staircase, arrow slits, dungeon, garderobes tapestries.
Siege: undermining the wall, giant catapult, battering ram, hot oil, scaling-ladders
Gunpowder meant the end.
The lord: controlled territory, fought wars, administered justice, attended tournaments and hunted.
The lady: ran the keep, came with a dowry, had an arranged marriage, looked after daughter’s education.
Feasts in the great hall. Jesters, musicians. Knives and spoons only. Lots of meat. Drank wine, ale and mead.

c) Knights:
Page: 7 to 14. Learned manners and attended to lady.
Squire: 14 to 21. Trained for fighting (sword, mace, lance, crossbow, longbow). Helped with lord’s armour. Learned code of chivalry.
Knighthood: night in church. Dubbed. ‘Arise Sir…’
Tournaments and Jousts: mock battles. Coat of arms.

d) The Manor:
The Manor was the village and the land around it.
Knight or lord: lived in manor-house (sometimes called a grange), and bailiff ran manor-farm. The demesne was kept for lord or knight. The life-style of the knight was similar to that of a lord, but was not as well off. The manor-house was made of wood and plaster.
Peasants: lived in 2 rooms. Houses made of wattle and daub and thatch. Houses had 2 rooms, one for family and one for animals. Freemen paid money rent and could go when they wanted. Serfs could not (year and a day). All had to work for lord at certain times. All had to use the lord’s mill. All had to pay tithes.
Open field system: 3 fields.1 fallow. Strips. Crop rotation. Common land. Animal parts not salted in autumn burned on ‘bonefires’ at Halloween.
Food: porridge for breakfast. Bread and cheese for lunch. Pottage (thick vegetable soup). Peasants rarely had meat. Ale or beer.
Clothes: wool spun and woven.
Tower houses: replaced manor-house for protection. Built by Gaelic Irish as well as Anglo-Norman. Rectangular, spiral staircase, murder-hole, door high up, had bawns for peasants.


e) Towns and cities
Normans developed Viking towns and also built new ones at: river crossings, ports, route crossings and around castles.
A town charter granted by the king gave the town the right to have a corporation, fairs and markets and courts.
Towns had walls. Houses made of wood (curfew). Open sewers. Chamber pots onto narrow streets with the shout ‘Gardez-loo’. Market cross. Town crier.
Merchants and Craftsmen: merchants well off, lived in stone houses. Craftsmen had workshops on ground floor with a sign outside (few could read).
Guilds: controlled standards and prices, decided who became master craftsmen, looked after sick members and their families.
Apprentice at 14. Lived with master. Could be punished. 7 years.
Journeyman. Could work for anyone. Paid by the day. Had to make a masterpiece to become a master.
Markets and Fairs: markets weekly at market cross. Fairs once or twice a year on the fair green (outside the walls). Lasted a week or more. Entertainment (bear and bull baiting, jugglers, musicians, fire-eaters)
Crime and Punishment: no one on streets after curfew. Stocks or Pillory. Hands chopped off. Torture, hanging and beheading.


f) Churches and monasteries
Bishops (dioceses), parishes. Church very powerful. Power shown in architecture.
Romanesque:rounded arches, square towers, thick walls and columns
Gothic: pointed arches, slender columns, thin walls supported by buttresses, rose windows and lancet windows.

Medieval Monasteries: different orders such as Benedictines and Cistercians.
Rule of St. Benedict. Poverty, chastity and obedience. Lay brothers.
Main buildings: cloisters, church, almonry, refectory, dormitory, infirmary, chapter house and scriptorium.
Main Monks: Abbot, novice master, infirmarian, almoner, hospitallar (guests).
Monasteries were very important to the community.
Monk’s day: Up very early. Down to church to pray. Breakfast in refectory. Meeting in chapter house to get jobs for day, punish and read a chapter from the Rule of St. Benedict. More prayers. Work. Prayer. Dinner. Prayer. Work. Prayer. Supper. Prayer. Bed at eight.
Begging monks or friars: Dominicans and Franciscans lived among people. Did not agree with the wealthy monasteries.

Plague or Black Death: killed one quarter to one third of population. Flea on black rat. Towns hit hardest.

The Renaissance is the rebirth of learning. The learning of ancient Greece and Rome was rediscovered and new discoveries made.
Humanism is showing great interest in human nature rather than religion. Writing in the vernacular became popular.
Artists were craftsmen like other tradesmen.

Why Italy?

Wealth cities provided patrons of the arts.
Fall of Constantinople.
Competition between city-states.
Ruins of Ancient Rome.

Differences between Medieval and Renaissance art:
Religion a theme but other themes important also.
Movement and emotions became important.
Oils and canvas became popular but egg tempera and frescoes still used.

Architecture moved from Gothic to Romanesque.

Important people of the Renaissance:
a) Patrons of the Arts:
Lorenzo de Medici: family ruled Florence. ‘The Magnificent’ collected ancient Greek and Roman manuscripts. Michelangelo was a pupil at the Platonic Academy. Spent a fortune on art.
The popes Leo X (Lorenzo’s son) and Julius II (Sistine Chapel)

b) Johannes Gutenberg.
He was a goldsmith from Mainz in Germany. Invented the movable metal type printing press. His bible is very valuable.
Invention of printing press important because:

  1. Books more plentiful and cheaper.
  2. Literacy and education spread.
  3. Spread ideas of Renaissance and Reformation.

c) Leonardo da Vinci.
Renaissance man (wide range)
Apprenticed to Verrochio. He was the first to use sfumato. Painted the Last Supper (falling apart) and the Mona Lisa (Louvre). Dissected more than 30 bodies. Used mirror writing.
Designed planes, parachutes, cannon and tanks. Died in France.

d) Michelangelo.
Attended Platonic Academy. Loved sculpture. White marble. The Pieta (optical illusion). David was the biggest statue of the time and showed mastery of anatomy.
Julius II ordered him to paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. It took 4 years.
He designed the dome of St. Peter’s. He was a poet also.
e) Durer.
From Nuremberg. Trained as an engraver. Famous for self-portraits and pictures of plants(Large Clod) and animals (Young Hare). His engravings could be printed. Very scientific approach.

f) Galileo.
The Father of Modern Science.
Invented the pendulum clock and a powerful telescope. Discovered that all solid objects fall at the same speed. He proved Copernicus was right when he said the Earth moved around the sun, but had to say he was wrong in front of the Inquisition.

g) Shakespeare.
Stratford on Avon. Married Anne Hathaway. Moved to London without the family. Worked in the Globe Theatre (open air, no women actors). Wrote 35 plays (Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet) and many sonnets. His plays are comedies, tragedies and histories.


  1. THE AGE OF EXPLORATION (1400 to 1750)

Before the age of exploration people believed: earth was flat, monsters, Europe at centre, boiling in south, and the world was smaller.

Why people wanted new sea routes:

  • Wealth for country
  • Wealth for explorer
  • To avoid Arab controlled trade routes
  • Religion
  • Inspired by spirit of Renaissance and The Travels of Marco Polo
  • Prester John

What made voyages possible:
Portuguese caravels (clinker-built, square and lateen sails, rudders)
New navigational instruments such as:

  • Astrolabe (north star), Quadrant (sun), cross-staff (horizon) all found latitude.
  • Compass for direction.
  • Log and line for speed.
  • Lead and line for depth.
  • Portolan charts and newer maps.

Life on board ship.
Difficult and dangerous. Strict discipline. Food dry and salted. Scurvy. Jobs to do. A hammock after America was discovered.

Important Explorers


a) Prince Henry the Navigator. 3rd son, Sagres (mapmaking, shipbuilding and astronomy), west coast of Africa, padroas (stone pillars), slaves helped fund voyages.

b) Bartholomew Diaz. Portuguese. Storm. Cape of Good Hope (King John). Padroa.

c) Vasco da Gama. Portuguese. India by sea. Reach Calicut. 2-year voyage. Portuguese got control of this valuable sea route. Set up trading posts.

d) Christopher Columbus (special study).
Born Genoa. Believed world was round. Wanted to sail west to China and Japan. Underestimated the distance by 3. Failed to get support in England and Portugal.
Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain in good form having driven out Muslims. ‘In 1492 Columbus sailed the Ocean Blue’. King and Queen promised to make him governor of new lands and title of Admiral of the Ocean.
3 ships, Nina, Pinta and Santa Maria and 90 men. He kept 2 logs. San Salvador in the Bahamas. Built a fort out of the wrecked Santa Maria and left 40 men behind. Brought back gold, pineapples, parrots and 6 ‘Indians’.
3 more voyages. Those left behind were killed. Explored other islands like Cuba. Brought over settlers. Such great cruelty against natives that Columbus was brought back in chains.
Died disappointed. Never admitted he had not reached his goal. Amerigo Vespucci proved that Columbus had discovered America. The discoveries of Columbus led to a dispute with the Portuguese. The Treaty of Tordesillas gave Brazil to Portugal and Spain got the rest of South America.

e) Ferdinand Magellan.
Portuguese. Charles V of Spain supported him. He would be made governor of all new lands discovered and 5% of the profits. 5 ships (Trinity, Conception, San Antonio, Santiago and Victoria)
Aim of the voyage was to avoid the Portuguese trade route by sailing west.
‘El Paso’ or the ‘Straits of Magellan’. Pacific ocean. Scurvy. Magellan killed on the Philippine Islands. Del Cano and 17 others out of 260 came home after 3 years.

f) Hernando Cortés.
Conquistador. Aim was gold and silver. 500 men. Got help from other tribes to attack the Aztecs (taxes, slavery and human sacrifices). Horses were new. Tenochtitlan (Mexico City). Montezuma killed by his own. Spaniards escape and return with 100,000 men. Slaughter and victory.

g) Francisco Pizzaro.
Conquistador. Gold and silver. 170 men. Captured Atahualpa. Room full of gold. Took Cuzco, the capital city. Pizzaro killed by his own.

Results of the Age of Exploration.

  • Geographical knowledge
  • Cultures destroyed
  • Many died of European diseases
  • Many enslaved, tortured and murdered
  • Countries other than Italy became rich and powerful.



Reasons for the Reformation

    • Wealth of the Church. Owned 1/3 of German land. Tithes.
    • Renaissance encouraged questioning.
    • Printing press spread ideas.
    • Kings wanted less interference.
    • Abuses (nepotism, simony, absenteeism, pluralism, sale of indulgences etc).


Story of Martin Luther (special study)

A German, studied to be a lawyer but became an Augustinian monk. Professor of Theology at Wittenberg. He studied the Bible and concluded ‘salvation by faith alone’.
John Tetzel selling indulgences. ½ the proceeds to St. Peter’s and ½ to Archbishop of Mainz to repay loans for simony (buying dioceses).95 theses on church door.
Public debate with John Eck (Luther questioned papal infallibility).
Emperor Charles V guaranteed safe passage to the Diet of Worms. Luther declared an outlaw. Frederick the Wise of Saxony put him in Wartburg Castle for a year for his own safety. Luther spent the time translating the Bible into German.
Lutheran princes protested (protestant) that they should control religion in their own states. War resulted which ended in the Peace of Augsburg, which decided that ‘the religion of the prince is the religion of the people’

Luther’s beliefs:

  • The Bible and not the hierarchy is the source of religious knowledge.
  • Salvation by faith alone.
  • 2 sacraments only, Baptism and Eucharist.
  • Married clergy.
  • Church services in the vernacular.

John Calvin.
Influenced by Luther. Had to leave France. Geneva ‘the city of God’.
Calvin’s beliefs: Outlined in The Institutes of the Christian Religion were similar to Luther’s with the exception of Predestination (the elect went to heaven), but a much more strict approach.
Pastors or ministers preached. Teachers taught. Deacons looked after the sick and elderly. Elders watched the behaviour of the people.
John Knox brought Calvinism to Scotland (Presbyterian Church). In France Calvinists were called Huguenots. In England they were called Puritans.

Henry VIII.
Catherine of Aragon. 1 daughter, no sons. Emperor Charles V (Catherine’s nephew) would not let the Pope annul the marriage.
Cranmer became Archbishop of Canterbury and granted a divorce. Henry married Anne Boleyn and was excommunicated.
Act of Supremacy made the king head of the Church. Thomas More beheaded.
Henry closed the monasteries because: it made him very rich, some were corrupt and they were loyal to the Pope.


The Counter-Reformation.

The Council of Trent.
A meeting of the hierarchy in Italy to discuss Catholic beliefs and discipline.
It concluded that the teachings were OK but the abuses were banned.
It increased the divisions with Protestants and led to wars of religion.

The Jesuits.
Ignatius of Loyola wrote Spiritual Exercises to train priests.
The new order was highly trained and organised along military lines (governor general).
They concentrated on teaching the sons of nobles and wealthy people.
They were missionaries.

The Court of Inquisition.
Its aim was to end heresy in Spain and Italy.
It used: San Benito (itchy garment), torture and burning at the stake (Auto da Fé)

Results of the Reformation

  • Europe divided. North mainly Protestant.
  • Wars of Religion. The Thirty Years War.
  • Persecution.
  • Education. Protestant wanted everyone to read the Bible.



Ireland in 1500
King was Lord of Ireland and had little control. The country was divided into 3 areas:

  1. The Pale (English speaking, common law, cattle raids)
  2. The Anglo-Irish lordships (Norman descendants, common law, some Irish customs)
  3. The Gaelic Irish lordships (Brehon law, clan owned tuath, little had changed since Celts)

Henry VIII and Ireland

Henry wanted greater control in Ireland because:

  1. To reduce the power of the Fitzgerald’s of Kildare.
  2. To prevent the French or Spanish from using Catholic Ireland as a base.
  3. To introduce the changes in religion to Ireland.

Garret Óg put in jail. Silken Thomas rebelled. Skeffington and gunpowder led to ‘the pardon of Maynooth’. Very expensive, so Henry tried a new approach.
Surrender and Regrant: Gaelic and Anglo-Irish lords gave their land to the king and got it back, with a title, if they promised to speak English, obey English law and practice English customs. This led to disputes over succession and now land could be confiscated from a chieftain.
Plantations were now possible. Loyal planters would get the land of rebellious Irish.

The Plantation of Laois and Offaly
O Moores and O Connors raided Pale. Lord Deputy defeated them and confiscated lands.
Queen’s County (Laois) with a county town called Maryborough (Portlaoise).
King’s County (Offaly) with a county town called Philipstown (Daingean)
Plantation failed because not enough planters came and the Irish kept attacking the settlers.

The Plantation of Munster

Causes of the Desmond Rebellions:

  • Queen Elizabeth wanted to increase control. Presidents of Munster appointed (English law and Protestant religion).
  • Adventurers encouraged to claim land.

James Fitzmaurice Fitzgerald got help from the Pope after his first rebellion failed. All 600 Spanish and Italian soldiers killed. Munster laid waste. Land confiscated.

The Plantation:
Undertakers got 4,6,8 and 12 thousand acre lots. Expected to be able to defend against the Spanish in 7 years.
Not nearly enough settlers came. The Irish attacked.
Ownership changed. New towns (Bandon and Lismore). Timber for barrels and ships. New farming methods. Trade prospered.


The Plantation of Ulster (special study)
Background and Causes:
Elizabeth wanted English law and Protestant religion in Ulster. O Neill and O Donnell rebelled. Some victories (Battle of Yellow Ford) and final defeat in Kinsale 1601.
Treaty of Mellifont.
Flight of the Earls 1607.
James 1 confiscated land

The Plantation:
James wanted loyal settlers, an income and a way to pay soldiers.
6 counties (Armagh, Derry, Donegal, Cavan, Fermanagh and Tyrone)
Estates of 1000, 1500 and 2000 given to 3 groups:

  • Undertakers (no Irish tenants, £5.33 per 1000 acres)
  • Servitors (some Irish, £8)
  • Loyal Irish (£10.66)

Bawns and Castles had to be built.
12 Guilds in London formed the Irish Society to plant Derry
Antrim and Down planted by Chichester, Hamilton and Montgomery.


  • Many Scottish Presbyterians did come.
  • Wood kern attacked settlers
  • Legacy of hatred
  • New towns
  • Trade prospered


The Cromwellian Settlement

Background and Causes:

1641 rebellion. Ulster settlers massacred.
Civil War in England.
Ireland was regarded, as Royalist and Cromwell needed to pay his Roundheads and adventurers who had financed the Civil War. Religion was important to Cromwell.

The Plantation:
1652 Act of Settlement. ‘To hell or to Connaught’
Many sent to the West Indies. Soldiers allowed enlist in armies not at war with England.
Sir William Petty and the Down Survey. 11 million acres.


  • Biggest change in land ownership.
  • Did not crush Catholic religion.
  • Outlaw bands called Tories attacked the settlers.
  • Power and wealth in Protestant hands.


Two of the three sections are covered: the American War of Independence and the 1798 Rebellion.
Background to the Age of Revolutions:
Absolute monarchy. The divine right of kings. The privileges of the nobility.
The Enlightenment. John Locke (people had the right to get rid of bad monarchs)




  • Britain wanted to tax the colonists for the 7 Years War with the French and Indians.
  • ‘No Taxation without Representation’ and the Sons of Liberty (attacked collectors).
  • The Navigation Acts (American exports had to go to Britain and on British ships.
  • The Boston Massacre (5 demonstrators shot by British soldiers)
  • The Boston Tea Party
  • British killed 8 in Lexington on their way to get arms in Concorde. But Paul Revere had warned the Americans and they ambushed and shot 273.
  • The Continental Congress made Washington commander-in-chief and passed the Declaration of Independence.


The Armies

Britain’s advantages: full time, navy, four times as many soldiers
Britain’s problems: far from home, did not know the countryside.
America’ advantages: fighting for home, knew countryside, good shots, guerrilla tactics, help from French.
America’s disadvantages: ‘minute men’, discipline poor.

The War
Went badly at first for America.
Victories at Trenton and Princeton.
Gates defeated the British at Saratoga.
The winter at Valley Forge (many died but Von Steuben trained the army).
At Yorktown Cornwallis, trapped between the French at sea and Washington’s forces on land, surrendered.


  • Washington became President.
  • United States of America was founded.
  • State government and Federal government.
  • Influenced other countries.




Background and causes
Irish Parliament controlled by Protestant Ascendancy (C of I only 15% and most of the land)
Penal laws left Catholics poor and uneducated.
Tithes still had to be paid.
The influence of the American and French revolutions

The Society of United Irishmen

Wolfe Tone (Dublin, Anglican Trinity barrister admired French Rev)
1791 Tone and Belfast Presbyterians formed the UI
Aim: Catholic and Protestant together would end British interference in Ireland
1793 War with France. British Gov afraid of Ireland. The UI was banned. Now a rebellion and a republic was the only way.
Tone escaped to America and then to France to get help.
1796 General Hoche and Bantry Bay storms.

The Rising

General Lake’s repression in Ulster and Leinster.
House burning flogging, pitch capping and half hanging
Spies and informers led to the arrest of the leaders, including Lord Edward Fitzgerald
The Rising in Dublin and the surrounding counties was easily put down

Wexford: Actions of Yeomen (part-time) and Militia (full-time) provoked rising.
Father Murphy won at Oulart Hill, Enniscorthy and freed Bagenal Harvey in Wexford
Important defeat at New Ross
Atrocity at Scullabogue
Final defeat at Vinegar Hill.

Ulster: Henry Joy McCracken defeated in Antrim and Henry Munro defeated in Down.


The End: Tone arrived in Lough Swilly. Sentenced to hang and committed suicide.


  • 30000 dead
  • Bitterness against British
  • Bitterness between Catholics and Protestant.
  • Further Rebellions
  • The Act of Union





Needed because of the increase in the population and the growth of towns.
Problems with the Open Field system:

  • Fallow land
  • No point in making improvements
  • Lazy neighbours
  • Diseases spread
  • Selective breeding impossible

New developments

Enclosure Acts had to be passed and commissioners divided the land.
Commonage gone (poor to the towns)
Viscount Townshend developed Norfolk system (wheat, turnips, barley, clover and grass)
Cattle could be fed in winter.
Robert Bakewell (selective breeding)
Arthur Young’s ‘The Annals of Agriculture’

New machines

Jethro Tull’s Seed Drill
Cyrus McCormick’s Reaper
Andrew Meikle’s Threshing Machine


  • Labourers had to move to the towns
  • Towns could be fed.












Definition: A complete change from a rural to an urban way of life.


Why it began in Britain

  • Large cheap labour force due to Enclosure and Jenner’s vaccination for smallpox.
  • Plentiful supply of coal and iron ore.
  • Inventors.
  • Large Empire (cheap raw materials and a ready market)
  • Wealthy landlords and merchants willing to invest in factories.

Transport Revolution

Needed because transport was slow, expensive, loads were small and bad roads led to many breakdowns.
Roads: Telford, McAdam and Metcalf improved road design
Turnpike Trusts built toll roads.

Canals: James Brindleybuilt the Worsley to Manchester canal for the Duke of Bridgewater. Canal building mania.
Ships: Steel hulls and steam power replaced wood and sail.
Railways: First railways were stationary steam engines in mines.
Richard Trevithick in fairs Catch Me Who Can.
First goods railway was Stockton to Darlington designed by George Stephenson.
First passenger line was Liverpool to Manchester. George and Robert Stephenson designed the Rocket.
Railway building mania.

The Textile Industry

First to be industrialised. Spinning wheels and hand looms in domestic industry.
John Kay’s Flying Shuttle.
James Hargreave’s Spinning Jenny.
Richard Arkwright’s Water Frame.
Samuel Crompton’s Mule
Edmund Cartwright’s Power Loom
These machines had to be put in factories and powered at first by water wheels and then by steam.
Thomas Newcomen’s steam engine could pump water out of mines.
James Watt’s could turn wheels.

Iron and Steel

Abraham Darby used coke to replace charcoal to make Pig iron
Henry Cort’s Puddling and Rolling Process made wrought iron.
Henry Bessemer’s Converter made steel.

Working in Factories
14-hour day, noisy, warm, dusty, and fines for breaking strict rules. Children often beaten.
1 euro a week for men, 44c for women and 23 c for children. Entire families had to work.
Unguarded machines. No compensation for injuries.

Working in Mines

Trappers (very young). Children carrying heavy loads on all fours on wet ground.
Lung diseases. Rock falls. Flooding. Gas explosions.
Newcomen’s steam engine helped stop flooding.
Watt’s steam engine dragged coal to the surface.
Davy safety lamp helped stop explosions.

Living in the Cities

Fast unplanned growth. Houses built by factory owners around the smoky factory.
Houses badly built. Damp and small, they had no running water or sewerage system.
Cholera from dirty water, typhus from bugs and TB from damp conditions. The rich moved to the suburbs.

Improvements in Health/Medicine

  • James Simpson used chloroform in operations.
  • Joseph Lister improved hygiene in hospitals.
  • Edward Jenner vaccinated against smallpox.
  • Edwin Chadwick’s report ‘The Sanitary Conditions of the Labouring Population’ led to cleaner streets, piped water and sewerage system.


































Most landlords protestant. Many absentee. Gale day (landlord’s agent). Large farmers (30 acres +). Sublet to small farmers and cottiers. Spailpeens were wandering labourers.
Country divided into Poor Law Unions and each had a workhouse. Only the really badly off would go there (families split up, like prison).


  • Rise in population
  • Subdivision
  • Dependence on the potato
  • The Blight


What was done

1845 Peel’s government bought maize (Indian corn) and set up Public Works Schemes.
1846 Russel’s liberal government did not want to interfere and abandoned the above.
Soup kitchens were set up by the Quakers and the government but the government abandoned the idea in 1847.
The workhouses catered for 200000 and eventually were allowed provide soup kitchens.


  • 1 million died of disease and starvation
  • 1 million emigrated by 1851 (coffin ships)
  • Push and pull causes left 4 million by 1900
  • Decline of Irish language
  • Subdivision ended
  • New catholic landlords
  • Hatred for Britain





Governing Ireland

  • Irish MPs and lords in Westminster
  • Lord Lieutenant represented King
  • Chief Secretary represented British government


Vast majority supported Irish Parliamentary Party  (Home Rule Party).
Led by John Redmond
84 of 105 seats in 1910
Home Rule meant a parliament in Dublin to deal with internal affairs
Peaceful means.
Had support of the Liberal Party.


Secret revolutionary organisation
Responsible for 1867 Fenian Rising
Complete independent Republic
Supported by Irish in USA

Sinn Féin

Arthur Griffith 1905
Dual monarchy
Tariffs to develop industry
Small until after 1916


Wanted to stay in UK. No HR. 3 reasons

  1. Felt British
  2. Home rule = Rome rule
  3. Fear of losing trade links

Carson and Craig
Supported by Conservatives (Empire would fall apart)

Labour Movement

Poor state of workers in Ireland
James Larkin from Liverpool set up ITGWU
William Martin Murphy and Employers Federation = Lockout
Police, government and Catholic Church supported employers.
After 5 months workers defeated
ITGWU did not die




The Home Rule Bill

1910 the Liberal government needed the support of the Home Rule Party (84 seats)
1911 Liberals passed The Parliament Act. House of Lords could only delay bills for 2 years.
1912 Third Home Rule Bill became law.
1914 WW1 broke out.
1916 the Irish didn’t want HR

Unionist Opposition

Took different forms

  • Demonstrations and speeches by Carson and Craig
  • Solemn League and Covenant
  • UVF
  • Larne (35000 rifles)

The Curragh Mutiny

Nationalist Reaction

Eoin MacNeill wrote ‘The North Began’
IRB involvement
Howth gun running (900 rifles) Asgard
WW1 stopped Civil War




Unionists joined 36th Ulster Division to show support for the union
Redmond at Woodenbridge split IVF
Those who supported Redmond became the National Volunteers and joined the British army
Those who supported MacNeill kept IVF name (IRB mainly)
250,000 Irishmen fought in WW1. 30,000 to 40,000 died


  1. THE 1916 RISING

Plans for a Rising

IRB ‘England’s difficulty is Ireland’s opportunity’
Military Council (Thomas Clarke, Patrick Pearse, Sean McDermott, Thomas Mac Donough, Joseph Plunkett and Eamon Ceannt)
James Connolly and the Irish Citizen’s Army persuaded to join.
Roger Casement. 20,000 rifles from Germany on the Aud.
MacNeill would not take part unless they were attacked first. The Castle document was forged. MacNeill was deceived and agreed to allow the IVF take part at Easter

Plans go wrong

Aud captured and scuttled. Casement arrested and hanged.
MacNeill found out the Castle Document was a forgery and called off manoeuvres on Easter Sunday

The Rising goes ahead

Military Council decided to go ahead on Easter Monday.
Rising confined to Dublin and bound for military failure
Pearse and the Proclamation
1500 rebels took key buildings in the city (GPO, Boland’s Mills, Jacob’s Factory, The Four Courts)
Failure to take Dublin Castle a big mistake.
British reinforcements from the Curragh and England.
The Helga shelled the GPO
Saturday, unconditional surrender

The Results of the Rising

  1. 500 killed, more injured, much damage
  2. Dubliners angry with rebels
  3. Martial law (2000 interned)
  4. 90 sentenced to death. 15 executed in Kilmainham Jail. Irish minds were changed. Home Rule finished.
  5. Sinn Féin got blamed and became popular. It changed its aim to an Irish Republic. DeValera became its leader.


The Conscription Crisis

Compulsory military service further boosted Sinn Fein’s popularity

The 1918 General Election

73 seats for Sinn Fein
Called their MPs Teachtaí Dála and refused to take seats.
1919 Dáil Éireann set up.



Sinn Féin and the First Dail
1919 Mansion House
27 TDs only, jail or on the run
First meeting issued:

  • Declaration of Independence
  • A message to the Free Nations of the World
  • A programme to improve living and working conditions

At a later meeting DeValera (rescued) elected president
Collins was Minister for Finance; Markieviec (labour), Griffith (home affairs and vice-president)
The Dail:

  • Got control of Local gov.
  • Set up their own courts
  • Got loans

The War of Independence

Same day of First Dail, Soloheadbeg happened (Breen, Treacy and others). 2 RIC dead, gelignite.
Early stages, RIC main target of guerrilla campaign.
Collins Director of Intelligence. The Squad. £10,000 reward.
Flying Columns (Tom Barry, Liam Lynch, Ernie O Malley) victories at Kilmichael and Crossbarry.

The British Response

Black and tans
Could not cope with guerrilla warfare and carried out reprisals (Cork, Balbriggan, burnings, beatings and murder)
The Government of Ireland Act 1920

Major incidents of the War of Independence

  • Tomás MacCurtain,s murder
  • Terence MacSwiney’s 74 day hunger strike
  • Bloody Sunday 21st of Nov 1920. 11 agents killed. 12 in Croke park (Michael Hogan).
  • Burning of Customs House (80 of Dublin brigade gone)


People wanted peace. IRA out of ammo and short of men.
Bad publicity for British gov. Costing a lot of money
DeValera and Lloyd George agreed a ceasefire.




Pro-Treaty (Regulars or Free State Army) V Anti Treaty (Irregulars or Republicans)
Both sides grabbed barracks as the British left
Irregulars took 4 Courts
Collins won election well. When 4 Courts Irregulars took a Regular general, Collins attacked them. He won easily with British artillary.

The Munster Republic

Limerick to Waterford
Collins used ships

Death of Collins and Griffith

August 1922
Griffith had brain haemorrhage
Beal na mBlath
WT Cosgrave and Kevin O Higgins took over


Guerilla Warfare

Did not work well because:

  • Free State had support of most people
  • They knew the land as well

Great brutality on both sides
April 1923 Liam Lynch killed. Frank Aiken and DeV called a ceasefire


  • Death and destruction
  • Lost leaders
  • Bitterness
  • Political Parties





  • Establish law and order
  • Rebuild the economy
  • Manage relations with Britain

Law and Order

  • Irish Free State member of Commonwealth
  • Oireachtas Dail Seanad
  • Oath of Allegiance
  • Governor General
  • Garda (unarmed)
  • Courts
  • Public Safety Act (wide powers of arrest)
  • The Army Mutiny (dissatisfaction with redundancy and progress to republic) Richard Mulcahy (defence) resigned and leaders arrested. Important to control army


The Economy

  • Concentration on agriculture (loans to farmers, better breeding)
  • The Shannon Scheme (ESB)


Relations with Britain

  • The Boundary Commission
  • 1931 Statute of Westminster (allowed members to change any laws made for them by the British parliament)

Reasons Decline of Cumann na nGaedhael

  • Blamed for the failure of the Boundary Commission
  • Great Depression
  • Cut in pay for teachers and garda
  • Popularity of Fianna Fail




Dismantling the Treaty

  • Used the Statute of Westminster to abolish the Oath
  • Got rid of the Governor General
  • Removed the king as head of state
  • New Constitution

The New Constitution (Bunreacht na hEireann)

  • Taoiseach replaced President of Executive Council
  • Douglas Hyde
  • Articles 2 and 3
  • Special position of Catholic Church
  • Eire not Free State

The IRA and the Blueshirts
DeV released the IRA prisoners who disrupted C na G meetings.
ACA elected Eoin O Duffy as leader. Blueshirts. Facists. DeV banned them after planned march on Glasnevin.
Joined with C na G to form Fine Gael. O Duffy was first leader. Unpopular so went to Spanish Civil War.

The Economic War

DeV refused to pay the Land Annuities.
British tariffs on Irish cattle. Irish tariffs. Ireland hardest hit.
Anglo- Irish agreement 1938:

  • £10 million compensation
  • Free Trade
  • 3 ports returned (Cobh, Lough Swilly, Berehaven)

The Economy

Sean Lemass (Industry and Commerce) put Protectionism in place. Helped infant industry but poor quality goods at high prices.
Irish Sugar and Aer Lingus set up.

The Emergency

Neutral because:

  • to show independence
  • too weak

Emergency Powers Act:

  • Censorship
  • Army built up. LDF 250,000 men.

The IRA a danger to neutrality. Some executed, some died on hunger strike and some interned.
German spies. ‘Operation Green’
North Strand 34 dead.
Britain and US did not like our neutrality. Dev rejected their criticisms.

What Lemass (Minister for Supplies) did:

  • Irish Shipping
  • Rationing
  • Turf replaced coal
  • The glimmer man    

9.   1948 – 1959

Defeat for DeValera because:

  • People wanted a change
  • Unemployment and emigration

1948 to 1951 The First Inter-Party government.
Fine Gael, Labour and Clan na Poblachta.
Taoiseach was John A Costello. Sean MacBride (external affairs), Noel Browne (Health).

  • 1949 Republic
  • Marshall Aid built houses and hospitals
  • Rural electricification
  • Fight against TB
  • IDA set up to attract foreign industry to Ireland
  • The Mother and Child scheme

1951- 1954 DeValera in power.
Better social welfare but still high unemployment and emigration

1954 – 1957 The Second Inter-Party government

  • Joined UN
  • Took action against IRA for border attacks (Clan na Poblachta pulled out of the government as a result)

DeV again interned IRA
1959 Dev became President for the next 14 years
Lemass took over as Taoiseach



Lemass appointed younger ministers like Lynch, Haughey and Donough O Malley

TK Whittaker drew up the First Programme for Economic Expansion, which:

  • Got rid of Protectionism.
  • Encouraged exports.
  • Grants and tax concessions to attract foreign industry

Lemass met Terence O Neill.
New schools were built.
Free Secondary education introduced
First shopping centres built
Finglas, Ballymun, Ballyfermot etc.were built.
RTE set up
‘Swinging Sixties’
JFK arrived.

  • YEARS OF UNCERTAINTY 1966 –1985.


Jack Lynch as Taoiseach 1966 – 1973
1970 The Arms crisis. Blaney and Haughey and Blaney sacked. Boland resigned in sympathy. Haughey later acquitted.
The campaign to join the EEC. We signed up on the 1st January 1973.

The Coalition government 1973 – 1977

Fine Gael and Labour led by Liam Cosgrave.
Oil crisis led to inflation and unemployment. Taxes increased.
Sunningdale signed by Heath and Cosgrave but the new power-sharing agreement was broken by Unionist opposition
1974 Dublin and Monaghan bombings.

1977 – 1981 Fianna Fail returns

‘Give-away election’
1979 Lynch resigned and Haughey took over.

1981 Coalition under Garret Fitzgerald (FG and Lab)
1982 Haughey and FF in power for 10 months

1982 –1987 FG under Fitzgerald
Still inflation, debt, high taxes, emigration and unemployment.
Fitzgerald and Thatcher signed the Anglo-Irish agreement in 1985. It stated that the Republic would have a say in running Northern Ireland..



Early Years

Government of Ireland Act 1920. Separate state. Westminster kept control of trade, foreign affairs, defence.
For the next fifty years unionists dominated NI.
Craig PM until 1940

Conflict between Protestants and Catholics.
Catholics seen as a threat to Union.
1922 RUC and B-Specials set up with Special Powers Act to arrest and imprison anyone.
1920s Catholics driven out of homes and jobs. Riots. Some Catholics killed.
Discrimination against Catholics in:

  • Government jobs
  • Gerrymandering
  • Education

The Economy in 1920s and 1930s

Shipbuilding and linen in decline.
Great Depression 40% unemployed.
1932 workers from both sides protested. Police crushed them. Sectarian violence returned, encouraged by political leaders like Basil Brooke.

World War 2

Strategic importance (south neutral, American base)
Shorts, Harland and Wolff, parachutes, rope etc.
Churchill offered DeValera the north if we joined the war
Craig replaced by J.M. Andrews and then Brooke
Over 1000 killed in bombing of Belfast.
North and South driven further apart by the war.

The Post-War Years.
Labour and the Welfare state:

  • Education for Catholics
  • Housing (discrimination)
  • Free medical care for women and children

Ireland Act 1949 guaranteed union with consent.
IRA bombing campaign in the 1950s
Shipbuilding and Linen began to fade in the 1960s

O Neill, Civil Rights and the Troubles.
O Neill wanted better relations with the South and Catholics.
He visited Cardinal Conway, Catholic schools and Lemass.
Strongly criticised by Paisley, O Neill resigned in 1969.

NICRA began in 1967. It wanted:

  • An end to gerrymandering
  • An end to discrimination in government housing and jobs
  • One man, one vote in local elections

Leaders included Fitt, Currie, Hume and Bernadette Devlin.
Derry march attacked by police on TV.
Troops sent in to protect Catholics were welcome.
1970 SDLP founded.
Provos broke away
Internment a big mistake
Jan 1972 Bloody Sunday 13 killed
William Whitelaw and direct rule 1972

Attempts at Peace.
Heath and Cosgrave signed Sunningdale. Power sharing and a Council of Ireland for cross-border cooperation.
New government led by Faulkner and Fitt.
Paisley and the Ulster Worker’s Council general strike. 1974 Direct Rule returned.

1979 Thatcher became PM.
Sands and the hunger-strikers wanted political prisoner status. 9 died.

1985 Thatcher and Fitzgerald signed the Anglo-Irish Agreement at Hillsborough. This gave the Republic a say in the running of NI. Thatcher did not give in to the Unionists.

1993 Major and Reynolds signed the Downing Street Declaration. Hume’s secret negotiations with the IRA led to ceasefire and unionists followed.

1998 with Clinton,s help the Good Friday agreement led to the power-sharing NI Assembly.
The PNSI and decommissioning.









The Legacy of World War 1
11 of 11 of 11 of 1918
Death and damage
Downfall of Empires
New states (Yugoslavia Czechoslovakia)
Rise of USA
Rise of Communism in USSR


USA GB France and Italy. Wilson, George, Clemenceau, Orlando.
14 Point Plan = League of Nations.

Treaty of Versailles

No choice for Weimar Gov. Unfair? War guilt clause a cause of WW2?

Demilitarisation of Rhineland

100000 men. No subs or aircraft. Small navy.
Anschluss forbidden
£6.6 billion in gold.

League of Nations

To achieve peace by making each member responsible for each other’s security.
Assembly (all countries represented, one vote, unanimous)
Council of Ministers (unanimous, main decisions)
International Court of Justice

Failed because:

  • Unanimous
  • No army
  • USA did not join. Germany and Russia for a short time.

Success in minor dispute between Finland and Sweden
Failures: Japan in China; Italy in Abyssinia; Hitler and Versailles

Democracy and Dictatorship

Dictatorship: One man or party; control of press; no freedom of speech; secret police; no freedom of the individual.

Communist dictatorship

Marx. Abolish private property and profit. Revolution. State ownership. No religion.
1917 Lenin. 1924 Stalin. Powerful country. Millions died.

Fascist dictatorship

  • anti-Communist
  • Extreme nationalism
  • Racism
  • Hostility to democracy
  • Cult of the leader
  • Use of violence to get power



Early career

Socialist teacher. Wounded in WW1.
Founded Fascio di Combattimento (blackshirts)

Why Fascism became popular.

  • Weak governments. 1 million dead. Disappointed with Paris Peace deal. Inflation and Unemployment.
  • Fear of Communism
  • Blackshirt violence.
  • March on Rome. Victor Emmanuel III

Becoming a Dictator

  • 1923 biggest party gets 2/3 of  seats
  • Opposition walked when Matteotti was murdered
  • Rule by decree
  • OVRA secret police
  • Il Duce. Cult of the Personality
  • Brainwashing, Balila.
  • Propaganda


Successes at home

  • Autostada and railways
  • Latern Treaty
  • Pontine Marshes
  • Employment
  • ‘Battle for Grain’ ‘Battle for Births’

Foreign Policy

Aims: to recreate the Roman Empire and to make the Med an Italian lake.
Took Libya, Abyssinia and Somalia.
Friendship developed with Hitler = 1936 Rome-Berlin Axis (allowed anchluss if Italy kept South Tyrol)
1939 Pact of Steel (full military alliance)
Italy did not join WW2 (army not ready) until Germany seemed to be winning in 1940.
Hitler had to send Rommel to help Italy in North Africa.

The End

Allies invaded

Mussolini arrested on king’s orders.
Nazis released him. Puppet gov.
Partisans killed him



Early career

Blamed Jews for art failure in Vienna
Dispatch rider in German army. 2 Iron crosses. Wounded twice.
Joined Nazi party as gov spy. Became leader.
Munich Putsch. Trial and Jail (Mein Kampf)

Hitler’s Ideas

  • Superior Aryan Race must be kept clean.
  • Lebensraum
  • Jews undermining Germany
  • Anti-Communist
  • Abolish Versailles
  • Weimar weak


Why Nazism became popular.

  • Weak governments
  • Economic problems
  • Great depression
  • Popular policies on Versailles, Communism, Jews.
  • Violence. SA ‘Brownshirts’ (Rohm) SS and Gestapo (Himmler)
  • Propaganda
  • Hitler’s personality (speeches)

Becoming a dictator

  • More popular in 1930s. Elected Chancellor in 1933.
  • SA and SS beat up opponents
  • Reichstag fire = banned socialists
  • Enabling law = rule by decree
  • Banned all other parties. Fuhrer.




Strict censorship
Mass rallies
Olympic games
Books burned and rewritten
Hitler Youth. League of German Maidens

Successes at home

6 million found jobs in 3 years

The Jews


Nuremberg laws (no citizenship, no intermarriage, star of David)
Crystal Night
Final Solution.


The Drift to War in Europe

Hitler’s aims:

  • Unite all German speakers
  • Lebensraum
  • Destroy Treaty of Versailles

1934 people of the Saar voted to rejoin Germany
1934 Mussolini rushed troops to prevent Anschluss
1935 An agreement with GB on a limit to the size of the navy but not on submarines.
1936 Rhineland demilitarised. A gamble.
1936 Rome-Berlin Axis. Friendship with Italy because:

  • Hitler backed invasion of Abyssinia
  • Co-operation in the Spanish Civil War

1938 Anschluss referendum
1938 Munich Conference. Chamberlain. Appeasement
1939 6 months. Rest of Czechoslovakia.
1939 Nazi-Soviet Pact. (10 year non-aggression, divide Poland)
31 August 1939 invasion of Poland




Invasion of Poland

SS dressed up 29th of August
1st September GB and France declare war.


Luftwaffe, then Panzers then motorised infantry. Poland defeated in 5 weeks.

Phoney War

Fighting on sea only.

Denmark and Norway

Spring 1940 Denmark in a day.
Norway was to protect neutral Sweden’s iron ore getting to Germany. Quisling in Norway.


Wrong to think the Ardennes would send the Germans through Belgium (Maginot Line)
Dunkirk 300,000British and French troops evacuated in ‘Operation Dynamo’
France surrendered in the same railway carriage.
Vichy France and Occupied France.

Operation Sea Lion and The Battle of Britain

German plan = Sea Lion
Churchill ‘We shall never surrender’.
RAF Spitfire and Hurricanes and Radar V Luftwaffe.

The Blitz


North Africa
Italy incompetent.
Rommel’s Afrika corp successful at first.
Montgomery and El Alamein a turning point.

Operation Barbarossa

June 1941 (bad time) 3 pronged attack on Leningrad, Moscow and Kiev.
Russian retreat. Scorched earth policy.
Stalin’s ‘Great Patriotic War’
German troops and machines not able for Russian winter.
Stalingrad (control of Caucasus oil fields) big turning point.

USA Joins the War

USA had supplied food and weapons to GB. Allied convoys had tried to fend off U-Boat ‘Wolfpacks’.
Japan’s Empire.
Dec 1941 Pearl Harbour. US navy lucky as only 18 ships sunk.
Eventually Alllied ships, weapons (depth charges), sonar, code-breaking and air reconnaissance won.

Allied Bombing

US Flying Fortresses and GB Lancasters bombed German cities and factories.
German retaliation with V1 and V2.

Allied Advance 1942-1945

GB and US troops up through Italy.
Russians pushed back. Battle of the Kursk (biggest tank battle)
Operation Overlord. D-Day 6 June 1944 Normandy (shallow) Utah, Omaha, Juno, Gold and Sword. Mulberry Harbours. Gliders and parachutes. Pluto the pipeline.

Battle of the Bulge

Hitler,s suicide and VE day 15th August 1945

Defeat of Japan

US helped by Austalia and GB.
Island hopping. Aircraft carriers. Kamakazi.
Battles of Midway, Coral Sea and Iwo Jima.
Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Why the Allies Won

  • Bigger armies
  • USA wealth and weapons ‘the arsenal of democracy’
  • Oil

Results of WW2

  • Destruction (Marshall Aid)
  • Nuremberg trials
  • Germany divided
  • Cold War
  • Super powers
  • European Unity



Causes of the Cold War

  • Political differences
  • Disagreements during WW2 . The US slow to open ‘second front’. 27 m Russians died.

Atomic bomb not shared with USSR.

  • The Iron Curtain. Buffer zone of ‘satellite states’. Tension.
  • The Truman doctrine. Originally to help Greece and Turkey (Communist pressure) led to the ‘Marshall plan’. The Russians competed with ‘Comecon’

Case Study 1. The Berlin Blockade 1948.
At Yalta and Potsdam Germany divided into zones. So was Berlin. These were supposed to be temporary.
USSR wanted revenged and stripped its zone.
The Allies did not want another Versailles and wanted a strong ally.
When the Allies introduced the Deutschmark the Russians cut off routes to Berlin.
Russians hoping Allies would leave Berlin
The Berlin Airlift. 3 air corridors. Plane landing every 90 seconds. People suffered.
11 months May 1949 blockade lifted


  • War did not happen
  • East and West Germany to stay
  • NATO and Warsaw Pact
  • Tension
  • 1961 The Berlin Wall.


Case Study 2. The Korean War.
After WW2 38th Parallel
1948 US backed Republic of Korea elected in the south (Seoul)
USSR Democratic Republic of Korea in the north (Pyongyang)
1950 border incidents led to North invading South.
UN (mainly US) army under MacArthur drove them back and went on to the Chinese border. Mao Tse tung entered the war and again the South was invaded.
Truman sacked MacArthur.
1953 Stalin died (Khrushchev) and Eisenhower became President. War ended. 38th Parallel resumed.

  • Over 1million dead. Country in ruins
  • Increased tension
  • New ally for US
  • UN authority established


The Cold War Spreads

  • The Arms Race began in earnest (H-bombs, ICBMs)
  • Space Race (1957 Sputnik 1 first satellite, 1961 Gagarin in space, 1969 man on the moon)
  • Propaganda
  • Sports


Case Study 3 The Cuban Missile Crisis

US backed Batista dictatorship. US industry and sugar plantations.
1959 Castro’s communist revolution nationalised the above.
US sanctions = Khrushchev + USSR bought Cuban sugar and sold weapons.
Kennedy and CIA = Bay of Pigs failure.
1962 U2 photographed Soviet missile bases under construction in Cuba
Kennedy’s blockade. Very close to war.
USSR agreed to dismantle bases

  1. Both sides took measures to prevent nuclear war
  2. 1963 US missile bases in Turkey dismantled
  3. ‘hotline’ set up
  4. Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (above ground)

The Cold War Comes to an End

1985 Gorbachev comes to power. Wanted to reform communism so the people would be better off.
‘Perestroika’ (reconstruction) and Glastnost (openness)
He wanted to cut military spending and made agreements with Reagan and Bush (snr) to scrap thousands of nuclear missiles.
Gorbachev’s promise not to use force to prevent democracy in eastern Europe led to the collapse of communism in East Germany and other countries
1989 Berlin Wall came down
1990 Germany reunited
The USSR began to break up.






 Reasons for European Unity.

  • To keep the peace
  • To revive economies
  • To compete with superpowers
  • To resist communism

Steps towards European Unity.

  1. 1949 The Council of Europe. 10 countries (including Ireland). It has no real power but did set The European Court of Human Rights. Citizens have won against their governments.
  2. Jean Monnet (French economist) believed in a united Europe.

Robert Schumann (French Foreign minister) believed that if German and French coal and steel industries depended on each other, there would be peace.
Konrad Adenauer (German Chancellor) agreed with ‘the Schumann Plan’.

  1. 1951 The Treaty of Paris formed the European Coal and Steel Community. 6 countries (Luxemburg, Netherlands, Belgium, France, Germany and Italy)
  2. 1957 the same 6 countries signed the Treaty of Rome setting up the European Economic Community
  3. 1973 GB, Ireland and Denmark joined
  1. 1993 Maastricht Treaty the European Community became the European Union.



  1. Peace and prosperity
  2. Free trade
  3. Common currency



  1. Gap between richer and poorer countries
  2. Poorer countries joining
  3. Loss of sovereignty
  4. Too distant from the people



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