Irish History Bitesize
Proclamation of Irish Independence prints

Parts four and five – Thomas MacDonagh’s role in the Easter Rising

Parts four and five of a ten part documentary by TG4 on the 1916 Easter Rising

The fourth video of the TG4 Easter Rising documentary begins with the final days of Joseph Plunkett’s life.

He married his fiancé Grace Gifford in Kilmainham Gaol just hours before he was executed.

Thomas MacDonagh - Poet and playwright who became a leader in the Easter Rising

The main section of the video focuses on the life of Thomas MacDonagh and his role in the Easter Rising.

MacDonagh was a poet, playwright and teacher. He met other Easter Rising leaders through his career as an educator. Patrick Pearse was headmaster at St Enda’s, while Joseph Plunkett hired him as an Irish language teacher.

Before becoming involved with the IRB, MacDonagh wrote a play in which an Irish uprising took place, led by an intellectual and six other leaders – almost a premonition for the real events that were to come.

Take a look at the fourth video below

Part five – Thomas MacDonagh during the Easter Rising

The fifth video is the concluding part of the Thomas MacDonagh story. It picks up where the fourth video left off, with MacDonagh and his men having seized control of the Jacob’s Biscuit factory.

MacDonagh’s men didn’t see much action throughout the week as the British forces were focusing their attention to the other areas of the Rising.

In this video we see how MacDonagh was affected by the ‘not knowing’ of what was happening elsewhere in Dublin, and the rest of Ireland.

During the week, MacDonagh, convinced himself that things were going according to plan. He believed that the Irish rebels were marching on Dublin and were close to victory. However, by the end of the week he realised that this wasn’t the case.

The video looks at MacDonagh’s mental state, particularly the fact that, being stationed at the Jacob’s Biscuit Factory, he hadn’t been as involved in the conflict as he would have expected.

Take a look at the fifth video below

Part six of the documentary looks at the role of Seán Mac Diarmada in the Easter Rising.

Sign up to our FREE newsletters

Please click on your confirmation email,
Check your junk mail folder in case it gets sent there.

Easter Rising documentary by TG4

Easter Rising documentary by TG4

History Videos

We hope this video will inspire you to delve into Irish history further and gain a better understanding of the real-life circumstances your ancestors lived in. Many people enjoy learning about Irish history as part of researching their own genealogy and building their family tree.

If you are interested in learning more about Irish history, then we would encourage you to enrol on one of the numerous free online education courses and tutorials available with universities and colleges around the world.


Follow the Irish History Bitesize Facebook page

More on Irish history


XSLT Plugin by Leo Jiang