Cosgrave, William Thomas

Cosgrave, William Thomas

(kŏz`grāv), 1880–1965, Irish statesman; father of Liam CosgraveCosgrave, Liam
, 1920–, Irish statesman; son of William Cosgrave. After studying law, he entered the Dáil Éireann as a Fine Gael member in 1943 and served as minister of commerce and industry (1948–54), minister for external affairs (1954–57), and
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. A member of Sinn FéinSinn Féin
[Irish,=we, ourselves], Irish nationalist movement. It had its roots in the Irish cultural revival at the end of the 19th cent. and the growing nationalist disenchantment with the constitutional Home Rule movement.
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, he fought in the Easter Rebellion (1916) and was sentenced to life imprisonment. Freed a year later, he was elected to the British Parliament in 1918 but protested British rule by refusing to take his seat. He helped organize an independent Irish Assembly, the Dáil ÉireannDáil Éireann
[Irish,=diet of Ireland], the popular representative body of the Oireachtas, or National Parliament, of the Republic of Ireland. The second, smaller chamber, the Saenad Éireann, or Senate, has very limited powers, and the executive, as
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 in 1919. Minister for local government in the revolutionary cabinet, Cosgrave supported the 1921 treaty with Great Britain that set up the Irish Free State (see IrelandIreland, Republic of,
Gaelic, Eire, republic (2005 est. pop. 4,016,000), 27,136 sq mi (70,282 sq km). It occupies all but the northeastern corner of the island of Ireland in the British Isles. (For physical geography and history to 1922, see Ireland.
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). After the deaths of Arthur GriffithGriffith, Arthur,
1872–1922, Irish statesman, founder of Sinn Féin. He joined the nationalist movement as a young man. In 1899 he founded the United Irishman,
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 and Michael CollinsCollins, Michael,
1890–1922, Irish revolutionary leader. He spent the years from 1907 to 1916 in England, during which period he joined the Fenian movement. He took part in the Easter Rebellion in Dublin in 1916 and was imprisoned for the rest of the year.
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, he was elected president and served from 1922 to 1932. He was opposition leader of his Fine Gael, or United Ireland, party from 1932 until his resignation in 1944.

Cosgrave, William Thomas

 

Born June 6, 1880, in Dublin; died there Nov. 16, 1965. Irish political leader and statesman.

Cosgrave joined the Sinn Fein movement, formed in 1905, and took part in the Easter Rebellion of 1916. He was a member of the Irish parliament from 1918 to 1944 and minister for local government in the Irish government from 1917 to 1922. As one of the leaders of the right wing of the Sinn Fein movement, Cosgrave supported the Anglo-Irish Treaty of 1921, signed by M. Collins. He was head of the government of the Irish Free State (Eire) from 1922 to 1932 and also occupied the posts of minister of finance (1922–23) and minister of defense (1924). Cosgrave carried out reactionary political policies serving the interests of Irish capitalist circles, which were closely linked with British imperialism. He was leader of the opposition from 1932 to 1944.