The Proclamation of the Irish Republic
The 'Proclamation of the Republic' was read by Patrick Pearse in front of the General Post Office in Dublin at 12.45 pm on Easter Monday, 24th April 1916.
The document was a formal assertion of the Irish Republic as a sovereign, independent state, and also a declaration of rights. The seven signatories, Thomas J. Clarke, Seán Mac Diarmada, Patrick H. Pearse, James Connolly, Thomas MacDonagh, Éamonn Ceannt and Joseph Plunkett, would all be among those court-martialled and executed after the failure of the Rising.
The document was printed in considerable haste in Liberty Hall on Easter Sunday and the morning of Easter Monday by printer Christopher Brady and compositors, Michael Molloy and Liam Ó Briain. As they were short of type, the document had to be printed in two halves, since the first half was broken up in order to provide type for the second half. Also owing to the age and dilapidation of the printing press, individual copies show idiosyncrasies in terms of ink pressure and spacing.
It is unclear how many copies of the Proclamation were printed, but a figure of 2,500 has been suggested. On Easter Monday 1916, between 12 noon and 1pm, the printed copies were sent to General Headquarters in the G.P.O. and from there distributed to different areas.
This particular copy was signed in the 1930s by Brady, Molloy and Ó Briain. Their signatures can be seen in the bottom left hand corner.