Eamonn Ceannt

 

Born: 1881

Died: May 8, 1916 in Dublin

 

    Eamonn Ceannt (Edmund Kent) is unfortunately one of the least well-known or recognized of the major players in the Easter Rising. He has been described as a tall man, an able commander and a dependable leader under pressure. He had a passion for Irish music, Irish language and Irish dancing.  He was Commandant of the Irish Volunteers and his jobs in the Rising were to oversee the South Dublin Union and to set up stations throughout the city.

 

"Eamonn Ceannt, another signatory of the Proclamation of the Republic, was also a founding member of the Irish Volunteers and on the Supreme Council of the IRB. He was one of 12 senior figures of the rising executed in Kilmainham Gaol" (Stephen Small, An Irish Century).

 

"Eamonn Ceannt was an intellectual, a native of Galway, where he was born in 1881. At heart a fiery gospeller for independence, his actual manner was reserved, almost aloof. He had great enthusiasm for the cause, but outwardly it was shown to only a few. His working hours were spent as a clerk in the City Treasurerís office while every moment of his spare time was devoted to the great ideal of independence for Ireland. He was recognized as one of the best teachers of Irish and he had music, his native music especially, in his soul. He was also a good athlete and in the year 1908 he was a member of a party of Irish athletes visiting Rome for the Jubilee celebrations in honour of His Holiness Pope Pius X. While there he was invited, as a piper, to play before the Pope. Ceannt had an impressive military bearing, and as Commandant of the Fourth Battalion during the Rising fully displayed his military abilities" (Rex Taylor, Michael Collins).

 

    For more on Eamonn Ceannt, please read Rebels: The Irish Rising of 1916 by Peter DeRosa.