Kinealy, Christine. The Great Calamity: The Irish Famine, Boulder: Roberts Rhinehart Publishers, 1995. MacIntyre, Angus. The Liberator: Daniel O’Conell and the Irish Party, New York: The MacMillan Company, 1965. MacManus, Seumas.
The nation was deeply devastated by this event both economically and socially. The Great Famine claimed over a million lives due to hunger and disease and resulted in the exodus of another million all in the span of six years. It is uncertain whether or not the famine could have been avoided, but the severity of the famine could have definitely been reduced. There were certain policies and procedures implemented by the British that set the Irish economy up for inevitable failure. Ireland had over eight million people during the mid-19th century.
The blight turned the potatoes black, making them deadly for people to eat. Problems with agriculture came to an all-time high during the famine (Foster 201), and the crop most affected by this blight was the potatoes. The cause of the potato disease was suspected to be due to many factors such as: frost, winds, moon, manure, or thunderstorms; however, the trouble was actually due to an unknown fungus (phytophthora infestans) which caused mould on the potatoes (Kee 78). The Irish had experienced blights before this, but did not cause famine; this was the first case of phytopthora infestans (Poirteir 9). The blight was a major cause of the great famine, however; many other factors attributed to the tragedy that would forever change the great country of Ireland.
Ireland Starves and Lives to Tell: The Effects of the Great Potato Famine “It must be understood that we cannot feed the people” (Kinealy Calamity 75). The mid 1800s in Ireland were characterized by extreme poverty, death, and emigration. The Great Potato Famine, also known as “The Great Hunger,” first hit in 1845; however, its effects lasted into the 1850s and can still be seen today. Prior to the famine, Irish manufacture and trade was controlled and suppressed by British government, which made Ireland an extremely poor country. Farmers in Ireland were forced to export crops such as corn, wheat, and oats to Britain, which left the potato as the main dietary staple for the people, especially the poor.
The Great Irish Famine happened during the mid-19th century, and was caused by potato blight, which hit Ireland in 1845 (Grada, “Ireland’s Great Famine” 43). It destroyed a big portion of crops so it became “lethal” due to the fact that Ireland was very dependent on potatoes in their everyday meals (Grada, “Ireland’s Great Famine” 43). This led to a scarce amount of food and many died from starvation, or other diseases that resulted from the famine (Grada, “Ireland’s Great Famine” 51). In the 1800s, Ireland had already lost their own parliament, so “all legislative and executive power was therefore centralized at Westminster,” which meant the UK parliament of the British government was responsible for Irish relief in their time of need, especially when the potatoes failed (Kinealy, Death-Dealing Famine 41). The British government had many interventions in Ireland during the Great Famine, and the interventions were supposed to contribute to famine relief, and improve social conditions in Ireland.
The Fall of the Potato: Causes of the Great Famine Phythophthora infestans was the lethal fungus that infested Ireland's potato crop and eventually ruined all of the land it grew on. This time is called the Great Famine and has impacted Ireland due to its destructive extinction of the potato farms which caused disease, extreme poverty, and death. There are several circumstances to take into consideration when looking at the causes of the Great Potato Famine in Ireland. Due to the great dependence the Irish people had on the potato, it is clear how blight could devastate a country and its people. To understand the Irish people's dependence on the potato for diet, income, and a way out of poverty, it is necessary to look at several key factors that were evident before the famine.
The Great Ireland Potato Famine Effects The Great Ireland Potato Famine was a horrible event that had many lasting effects. Some of these effects were starvation, disease, poverty, emigration, and lost traits. These effects plagued mostly western Ireland, but had an overall effect on all of Ireland. Many of the traditional ways of economics and society changed drastically because of the famine. Many people also blamed the British for letting the famine get so bad.
During the mid-1800s, an event called the Great Famine happened in Ireland. This event was caused by the organism phytophthora infestans, commonly known as the potato blight, which infected the farmer’s potatoes and rendered them inedible. During this period, P. infestans left many people suffering or even dead because of their lack of food. This paper will go over various topics on the famine such as how it arrived in Ireland, the potato, effects of the famine on the Irish people, and the people’s dependency on potatoes. The Great Famine was a national tragedy for Ireland and caused mass devastation in the country.
Dylan Gronset Mr. Vitale British Literature 8 April 2014 The Economy of Ireland During the Great Famine The Great Potato Famine, which lasted from 1845-1852 did not only destroy the potato crops but also the Irish economy. The famine brought job loss, lowered the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and left many homeless. Ireland was in a time of despair having to depend on other counties aid. The famine was a contributing factor to the failing Irish Economy but not the only cause. The British policies and laws also contributed to the decline.
The Famine began 1845 to 1850, beginning in the fall of 1845 when the potatoes in Ireland were harvested. The entire potato crop was discovered to be diseased by late plight. Late plight is a fungus that destroys everything in a potato plant from its edible roots to the actual potato making them not edible, which also made the Irish vulnerable to a vast array of diseases. Ireland was a thriving agricultural nation that was blessed with plentiful soil mostly in the Northern and Eastern parts of the country. The South Western area of Ireland was covered by rocky soil that was almost impossible to farm, but this arid, rural areas in the North and East contained about 700 people per square mile.