How Successful was Catholic Emancipation


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  • Created on: 02-04-13 08:23
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Catholic Emancipation 28/8/12 9:55 AM
How far can Emancipation be seen as a success for Irish Catholics?
To a large extent, the Emancipation was a success for Irish Catholics.
Primarily, the law which barred Catholics from being able to become MPs
was broken. This can be considered a huge success as this enabled Irish
Catholics to hold positions in Parliament of major influence.
Additionally, the Emancipation demonstrated the strength of Catholic
public opinion, which posed a future of change through the opinion of
the masses.
However, sectarianism increased following this as Irish Protestants
viewed this achievement as purely Catholic. This can be seen as
unsuccessful for Irish Catholics as it created a further divide in Ireland.
Furthermore, a change in Franchise qualification (from 40 shilling to £10
household suffrage) meant that the Irish electorate was cut to 1/6th of
it's former size. This gave Irish Catholics a smaller chance to politically
Overall, the Emancipation allowed Irish Catholics to advance
professionally and politically, which was undoubtedly a crucial victory on
their part. There were indeed negative aspects to consider; despite the
Emancipation being a huge advancement the fundamental changes
following the 1829 Act were slow and problems surrounding Protestant
opinion arose, though on the whole, the Emancipation was certainly a
great step forward for Irish Catholics.


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