King George V Peace Speech in Belfast 1921

#OnThisDay 1921 In Belfast, King George V called for peace in Ireland;

‘I am emboldened by that thought to look beyond the sorrow and the anxiety which have clouded of late My vision of Irish affairs. I speak from a full heart when I pray that My coming to Ireland to-day may prove to be the first step towards an end of strife amongst her people, whatever their race or creed. In that hope, I appeal to all Irishmen to pause, to stretch out the hand of forbearance and conciliation, to forgive and to forget, and to join in making for the land which they love a new era of peace, contentment, and goodwill.

It is My earnest desire that in Southern Ireland, too, there may ere long take place a parallel to what is now passing in this Hall; that there a similar occasion may present itself and a similar ceremony be performed.’

He hoped to bring a favourable end to Irish War of Independence. However he was speaking at the opening of the Belfast Parliament, which split Ireland in two, something in which Republicans would fight over too. His speech was most likely ‘influenced’ by Lloyd George too.

King-George-v

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