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Hibernia

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Hibernia
Hibernia
Hibernia representing a mourning Ireland. As published by the nationalist newspaper United Ireland following the death of Edmund Dwyer Gray in 1888.

Real Name

Hibernia

First Appearance

Unknown

Created by

Unknown

Origin

Hibernia as a national personification representing Ireland appeared in numerous cartoons and drawings, especially in the nineteenth century.

As depicted in frequent cartoons in Punch, a magazine outspokenly hostile to Irish nationalism, Hibernia was shown as "Britannia's younger sister". She is an attractive, vulnerable girl. She is threatened by manifestations of Irish nationalism such as the Fenians or the Irish National Land League, invariably depicted as brutish, ape-like monsters. Unable to defend herself, Hibernia turns to the strong, armoured Britannia for defence. John Tenniel, now mainly remembered as the illustrator of "Alice in Wonderland", produced many such depictions of Hibernia.

At times nationalist publications (such as the Land League and Parnell's United Ireland newspaper) did use the image of Hibernia. However, possibly because of the pro-union publications' adoption of the "helpless" image of Hibernia, nationalist publications would later use Ériu and Kathleen Ni Houlihan as personifications of Irish nationhood instead.

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