Initially released as Ballinasloe, The Gentry, End of the British Empire, the action of this novel is centred about the home of Lord Clancarty and the Trench family. Lord Clancarty owned and controlled 26,000 acres of land at a time when Ireland was a paradise for the privileged classes. Dublin had become known as the Second City of the Empire, and the lavish lifestyle of these people was legendary. They became known to the Irish as the gentry, and they controlled the balance of power as Westminster. The Irish were held in their grip for centuries. However, in 1916 a rebellion known as the Easter Rising took place in Dublin. It was crushed within a week, and all its leaders were executed. This event turned the whole country against the empire. When the 1918 elections came up, the Irish Nationalists, Sinn Fein, won seventy-eight seats of the 106 seats at Westminster. It was an overwhelming victory. It broke the stranglehold of the empire and Ireland was declared independent.
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