Irish Church Act 1869

The Irish Church Act 1869
Long title An Act to put an end to the Establishment of the Church of Ireland, and to make provision in respect of the Temporalities thereof, and in respect of the Royal College of Maynooth
Citation 32 & 33 Vict. c. 42
Territorial extent Ireland
Royal assent 26 July 1869
Commencement 1 January 1871
Other legislation
Relates to Welsh Church Act 1914
Status: Current legislation
Text of statute as originally enacted
Revised text of statute as amended

The Irish Church Act 1869 (32 & 33 Vict. c. 42) is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom passed during William Ewart Gladstone's administration and which came into force on 1 January 1871.

The Act disestablished the (Anglican) Church of Ireland, a body that commanded the adherence of a small minority of the population of Ireland, disassociating it from the state and repealing the law that required tithes to be paid to it. It also ceased to send representatives to the House of Lords. Existing clergy of the church received a life annuity in lieu of the revenues to which they were no longer entitled: tithe, rentcharge, ministers' money, stipends and augmentations, and certain marriage and burial fees.[1]

The passage of the Bill through Parliament caused acrimony between the House of Commons and the House of Lords, with Queen Victoria intervening personally to mediate. The Lords did extort from the Commons more compensation to alleviate the disestablished churchmen, but in the end the will of the Commons prevailed.[2]

The Irish Church Act was a key move in dismantling the Protestant Ascendancy which had dominated Ireland for several centuries previously.

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