1921 – Michael Collins, Arthur Griffith and the other plenipotentiaries return from London to present Britain’s proposed treaty draft to government colleagues.

Stair na hÉireann/History of Ireland

Presentation of the British draft of the Anglo-Irish Treaty took place from 1-6 December, with the delegates returning to Dublin on this date for two days to present the proposed draft to their colleagues, they returned to London to further negotiate and signed the Treaty (Articles of Agreement) on 6 December 1921.

Collins was not keen on leading the negotiating team, citing both his lack of experience in matters of state and his vulnerability in exposing himself should hostilities resume. In spite of this, Collins followed the orders of his ‘Chief’ and went to London. It was a decision that De Valera would later have cause to regret.

The seeds were being set for a bitterly divided cabinet which would eventually lead to civil war.

The negotiations that led to the Treaty essentially concerned three vital points. First, the unity of Ireland, second, the degree of independence an Irish government…

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