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Synopsis

Ireland's struggle for freedom reaches back much further into the annals of history than most of us can imagine. Since the eleventh century, when legendary king Brian Boru united the chieftains of Ireland to resist Viking invasion, countless individual leaders have fought to preserve and protect Ireland's political and cul-tural autonomy. In a chronicle of unprecedented breadth and authority, For the Cause of Liberty tells the stories of these heroes -- including both men and women, Catholics and Protestants -- who enabled the Irish to free themselves from the yoke of colonial oppression.

Journalist Terry Golway reconstructs the entire thousand-year history of Irish nationalism, covering each benchmark event in Ireland's political evolution and presenting a vivid, epic tale of both the famous and unsung patriots who changed the course of Ireland's history. Among these are Wolfe Tone, a leader of the 1798 rebellion who cut his own throat rather than submit to a hangman; Kevin Barry, executed at age eighteen rather than turn informer on the eve of independence in 1921; and Bobby Sands, an IRA militant who died on a hunger strike in 1981, calling international attention to the conflict in Northern Ireland.

The engaging and admirable story of how the Irish have saved themselves, For the Cause of Liberty is a peerless work of scholarship, and it offers a fresh context for the ongoing discussion of Ireland's political future.

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