2014 Spring Discourse

The 2014 Spring Discourse took place at the Ulster Museum, Botanic Gardens, Stranmillis Road, Belfast In a change to the Society’s usual format, this year we invited a number of excellent speakers to address the Society on a range of topics over two days:

  • Professor Lord Bew (School of Politics, Queen’s Univeristy Belfast): ‘Parnell and the Law.’
  • Sir Anthony Hart: ‘The Law in Action in Ulster, 1898.’
  • Professor Peter Gray (School of History, QUB): ‘Making a Poor Law for Ireland’.
  • Dr Thomas Mohr (UCD Sutherland School of Law): ‘The Oath and the Treaty.’

The flyer for the event is available here.



2013 Autumn Discourse

Continuing the celebration of the 25th anniversary of the founding of the Society, the 2013 AGM took place on Friday 8 November at the Stormont Hotel, Upper Newtownards Road, Belfast. The AGM was followed by the launch of the Society’s 25th Anniversary Volume, Daire Hogan and Colum Kenny (eds), Changes in Practice in Law (Four Courts Press, 2013), by Mr David Ford MLA at the Stormont Parliament buildings.

Dr Conor Mulvagh of UCD Dublin then presented a paper entitled “Legislative landmine?: evaluating the third Home Rule Bill”


2013 Spring Discourse

2013 marked the 25th anniversary of the founding of the Irish Legal History Society in the Provost’s House of Trinity College Dublin. It is therefore fitting that we returned to Trinity for this year’s Spring Discourse. An excellent paper was delivered by Mr Daire Hogan in the Debating Chamber of the Graduates Memorial Building, on Friday 15th February, entitled: ‘ . . . “I want the chancellorship. You can get it for me”; James Campbell’s path to judicial office, 1915 – 1918.’

James Campbell, first Baron Glenavy
[James Campbell, First Baron Glenavy and Lord Chancellor of Ireland]

About the Speaker
Mr Hogan is a recently retired partner at McCann FitzGerald. He served as the first honorary Treasurer of the Society and was President 1995-98. In addition Daire was a co-editor of the first publication Brehons Serjeants and Attorneys . He lectured to the Society on RR Cherry, published as an essay in Mysteries and Solutions and also edited jointly with Dr Eamonn G Hall ‘The Law Society of Ireland 1852-2002, Portrait of a Profession’ Four Courts Press 2002.

Other Events
As part of the proceedings on Friday 15th February, the first W.N. Osborough Composition Prize in Legal History was awarded to Dr Maebh Harding from the University of Portsmouth (pictured below). Dr Harding’s essay, ‘The Curious Incident of the Marriage Act (No. 2) 1537 and the Irish Statute Book’ is published in Legal Studies (2012).


2012 Autumn Discourse

By kind permission of the Dublin Cemetery Committee and the Glasnevin Trust, the 2012 Annual General Meeting was held in the Museum of Glasnevin cemetery on Friday 30th November. The AGM was preceded by a fascinating guided tour of the legal graves of Glasnevin.

After the AGM, the president of the Society, Prof. Norma Dawson delivered her presidential address entitled: “The Ulster Plantation Case 1892-98 – the end of the adventure?” For more details please click here.

2012 Spring Discourse

The 2012 Spring Discourse will take place on Monday 26th March at the Royal Courts of Justice in Belfast. The Society will be addressed by the Rt Hon Lord Judge, the Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales and President of the Selden Society.

2011 Autumn Discourse

The Autumn Discourse took place on Friday 4th November 2011 in the Lanyon Building, Queen’s University Belfast.

Dr Kevin Costello delivered a fascinating paper on Imprisonment for Debtors in the Nineteenth Century. This was followed by a wine reception.

The Society also held its 2011 Annual General Meeting.

2011 Spring Discourse

The Spring Discourse of the Irish Legal History Society took place at The Honorable Society of King’s Inns, Henrietta Street, Dublin 1, on Friday, 4 March 2011 at 6.00 p.m.

The Hon. Mr Justice Hugh Geoghegan delivered a discourse on “The Three Judges of the Supreme Court of the Irish Free State, 1925 to 1936 – Their Backgrounds, Personalities and Mindsets”.

The discourse took place in the Upper Lecture Theatre.

2010 Autumn Discourse

The 2010 Annual General Meeting of the Irish Legal History Society took place on 12 November 2010 at the National University of Ireland, 49 Merrion Square, Dublin 2.

Mr Myles Dungan delivered a paper on “Ruffian Print: United Ireland, Censorship and Jury Packing 1881-1883”.

2010 Spring Discourse

The Society’s 2010 Spring Discourse took place on Friday 26 February 2010 at the Inn of Court, The Royal Courts of Justice, Belfast.

The Rt. Hon. the Lord Carswell presented a paper entitled “Founding a Legal System – the Early Judiciary of Northern Ireland”.

2009 Autumn Discourse

The AGM took place at the Law Society of Northern Ireland on 27 November 2009. The outgoing President, James McGuire, delivered the Autumn Discourse of the Society on: “Lord Chancellors of Ireland and the Royal Irish Academy’s Dictionary of Irish Biography”. Afterwards he was awarded the Gold Medal of the Society in recognition of his scholarship and contribution to Irish legal history.

The Society would like to acknowledge and thank the Law Society of Northern Ireland for hosting and sponsoring this event.