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New Viceroy and Chief Secretary arrive in Ireland
Lord French in Dublin Castle Photo: Illustrated London News [London, England] 18 May 1918

New Viceroy and Chief Secretary arrive in Ireland

Dublin, 11 May 1918 - Viscount French and Edward Shortt were sworn in today as Lord Lieutenant and Chief Secretary respectively at a ceremony at Dublin Castle.

The occasion was marked by neither fuss nor fanfare. There was no great ceremony on their arrival at Kingstown and they proceeded to Dublin by motor car.

A letter from M. Keating, MP for South Kilkenny, congratulating Edward Shortt on his appointment as Chief Secretary. He says that he is ‘heartily pleased that Ireland has such a good friend in the position. I will do what I can to assist you in finding a solution of the present struggle...’ Click images to enlarge. (Images: National Archives of Ireland, CSO RP 1918, 13122)

At the Castle, Lord French was met by a guard of honour and taken to the presence chamber, where he was received by the Lords Justices. They moved to the council chamber where Lord French delivered the letters patent appointing him Lord Lieutenant, which the Clerk of the Crown and Hanaper read aloud, after which the oath of allegiance and the official oath were administered.

The Sword of State was then delivered to him and he was invested with the insignia of the Grand Master of the Order of St Patrick.

With the new Lord Lieutenant sworn in, attention turned to the new Chief Secretary. Mr Shortt took the oath and was invested with the badge of Chancellor of the Order of St Patrick in the presence of members of the Privy Council. On emerging from the ceremony, troops presented arms to Lord French and a band struck up ‘God Save the King’.

Lord French then inspected the guard of honour and departed from Dublin Castle, later attending the Phoenix Park races in the company Sir Bryan Mahon.

[Editor's note: This is an article from Century Ireland, a fortnightly online newspaper, written from the perspective of a journalist 100 years ago, based on news reports of the time.]


Century Ireland

The Century Ireland project is an online historical newspaper that tells the story of the events of Irish life a century ago.