They walked home-made mock gallows up Molesworth Street and sang "You'll never beat the Irish".

All along the sides of their chilling prop they placed pictures of well-known politicians.

Demonstrations are familiar in these parts but there was a venomous high energy feel to this gathering.

They threw urine at Leinster House staff and spat at others.

They ran frenetically and shouted all manner of threats when politicians, or indeed anyone, tried to get inside the garda barrier to access the national parliament from Kildare Street.

The early analysis from politicians was that this was all more aggressive than usual but certainly not out of control.

Some even joked that they passed through the demonstrations unnoticed.

One Fine Gael TD achieved this by not wearing a tie and jacket and sporting a rucksack.

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Others failed to see any bleak hilarity in what was unfolding.

Later in the afternoon, things became more tense.

At this point it was clear that politicians were having serious difficulty going to and from their place of work.

Cars were lined up for hours before the gates to Merrion Street could be opened to allow them to depart.

There were even security orders in place for a while not to permit anyone to exit the grounds and the sense of siege was palpable.

Word soon spread about the level of intimidation experienced by TDs Michael Healy-Rae and Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire.

Gardaí had to swiftly lead them to safety.

The jostling, shoving and bottle-throwing by the demonstrators meant these politicians were unable to go about their work. Something regarded as sacrosanct in any democracy.

It has been a principle protected here since the State's foundation, even on dark days.

When everything began to settle down, soon after 6pm, politicians began to tally the impact of this grimly eventful day.

Ceann Comhairle Sean Ó Fearghail expressed concern at certain aspects of the demonstration while acknowledging that demonstrations are a key part of life in a well-functioning democracy.

He has requested a security review which will be carried out by gardaí and the security staff at Leinster House today.

Cathoirleach of the Seanad Jerry Buttimer called for a policing plan to be put in place to ensure that no person will ever again fear injury or harm on their way to work in Leinster House.

Some issued stark warnings though.

Green Party TD Marc Ó Cathasaigh posed a worrying rhetorical question.

He asked: "Do we imagine we're far from a Jo Cox moment? We’ve pretended to ourselves that we’re immune to this kind of dangerous polarisation in this country. We are not."