Republic of Ireland

country in Northwestern Europe

Ireland (Irish: Éire [ˈeːɾʲə] (audio speaker iconlisten)) is a European country on the island of Ireland. It shares a border with Northern Ireland (which is controlled by the United Kingdom). The country is sometimes called the Republic of Ireland to distinguish it from the island.

Éire  (Irish)
Anthem: "Amhrán na bhFiann"
(English: "The Soldiers' Song")
Location of  Ireland  (dark green) – on the European continent  (green & dark grey) – in the European Union  (green)
Location of  Ireland  (dark green)

– on the European continent  (green & dark grey)
– in the European Union  (green)

and largest city
53°20.65′N 6°16.05′W / 53.34417°N 6.26750°W / 53.34417; -6.2675053°N 8°W / 53°N 8°W / 53; -8
Official languages
Ethnic groups
  • 82.2% White Irish
  • 9.5% Other White
  • 2.6% Not stated
  • 2.1% Asian Irish / Other Asian
  • 1.5% Other ethn.
  • 1.2% Black Irish / Black African
  • 0.7% Irish Traveller
  • 0.1% Other Black
  • 0.84% Roma (Gypsy)
GovernmentUnitary parliamentary republic
• President
Michael D. Higgins
• Taoiseach
Simon Harris
• Tánaiste
Micheál Martin
Frank Clarke
Stages of independence 
24 April 1916
21 January 1919
6 December 1921
6 December 1922
29 December 1937
18 April 1949
• Total
70,273 km2 (27,133 sq mi) (118th)
• Water (%)
• 2020 estimate
Increase 4,977,400[3] (124th)
• Density
70.8/km2 (183.4/sq mi) (113th)
GDP (PPP)2019 estimate
• Total
Increase $412.797 billion[4] (46th)
• Per capita
Increase $86,988[4] (4th)
GDP (nominal)2019 estimate
• Total
Increase $384.940 billion[4] (32nd)
• Per capita
Decrease $77,771[4] (4th)
Gini (2018)Positive decrease 28.9[5]
low · 23rd
HDI (2018)Increase 0.942[6]
very high · 3rd
CurrencyEuro ()[note 1] (EUR)
Time zoneUTC (GMT)
• Summer (DST)
Date formatdd/mm/yyyy
Driving sideleft
Calling code+353
ISO 3166 codeIE
  1. ^ Article 4 of the Constitution of Ireland declares that the name of the state is Ireland; Section 2 of the Republic of Ireland Act 1948 declares that Republic of Ireland is "the description of the State".[7]
  2. ^ Also the sole national language, as per the Section 2 of the Official Languages Act 2003.
  3. ^ The .eu domain is also used, as it is shared with other European Union member states.

It is a member of the European Union. The republic's capital is Dublin. Cork is the second largest city in the country and the third largest on the island of Ireland. The population of Ireland is 4.9 million. English is the main language spoken. The Irish language is widely taught in all schools, and it is still spoken as a first language in some areas of the country, known as the Gaeltacht. Irish is the first official language, followed by English.



Several hundred years ago, the English took over the country and made it part of the United Kingdom in 1801. After many years of revolution, Ireland gained its independence from the United Kingdom in 1922 and has been an independent country since then. It was a neutral country during World War II.



The state extends over an area of about five-sixths (70,273 km2 or 27,133 sq mi) of the island of Ireland (84,421 km2 or 32,595 sq mi), with Northern Ireland being the rest.

Ireland is one of the countries in Europe with the least forests. Today, only about 10% of Ireland is covered with forests.

The total land area dedicated to farming is 64%.


President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins

The head of State, the President, is elected for seven years by the adult citizens. The same president can only be elected twice (14 years). Most of the president's tasks are representing and ceremonial ones. The president has little power over the government.

Ireland is a democracy and people vote for their representatives. The Taoiseach (equivalent to a prime minister) is selected by the parliament. The Taoiseach is usually the head of the biggest party.

The Oireachtas (equivalent to the parliament) consists of the Dáil Éireann (the lower House) and the Seanad (the 'upper House'). The system is similar to that of France or the United States, except that the President is not an executive. It is closely modelled on the Parliament of the United Kingdom, with the executive appointed from within the lower house, and the head of State is the President in Ireland serving a similar function as the Monarch in the UK.

The main political parties in Ireland are Sinn Féin (25%), Fianna Fail (22%), Fine Gael (21%), the Labour Party (5%) and others. [8]

Local government


The Local Government Act 1898 is the founding document of the present system of local government, while the Twentieth Amendment to the constitution of 1999 given for its constitutional recognition. The twenty-six traditional counties of Ireland are not always related to governmental divisions although they are usually used as a geographical frame of reference by the population of Ireland. Below this (with the exception of the Dublin Region and the three city councils) are municipal districts.

  1. Fingal
  2. Dublin City
  3. Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown
  4. South Dublin
  5. Wicklow
  6. Wexford
  7. Carlow
  8. Kildare
  9. Meath
  10. Louth
  11. Monaghan
  12. Cavan
  13. Longford
  14. Westmeath
  15. Offaly
  16. Laois
  1. Kilkenny
  2. Waterford
  3. Cork City
  4. Cork
  5. Kerry
  6. Limerick
  7. Tipperary
  8. Clare
  9. Galway
  10. Galway City
  11. Mayo
  12. Roscommon
  13. Sligo
  14. Leitrim
  15. Donegal


  1. "Official Languages Act 2003". Office of the Attorney-General. Retrieved 18 February 2012.
  2. "CSO Census 2016 Chapter 6 – Ethnicity and Irish Travellers" (PDF). Retrieved 28 April 2017.
  3. "Population and migration estimates April 2020". 22 August 2020.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 "World Economic Outlook Database, October 2019". International Monetary Fund. Retrieved 8 January 2020.
  5. "Gini coefficient of equivalised disposable income – EU-SILC survey". Eurostat. Retrieved 8 January 2020.
  6. "Human Development Report 2019". United Nations Development Programme. 10 December 2019. Archived from the original (PDF) on 30 April 2020. Retrieved 10 December 2019.
  7. Coakley, John (20 August 2009). Politics in the Republic of Ireland. Taylor & Francis. p. 76. ISBN 978-0-415-47672-0. Retrieved 2 May 2011.
  8. "Irish polls, trends and election news for Ireland - POLITICO". Politico. 17 February 2022. Retrieved 2023-05-09. Ireland - 2020 general election first preference votes


  1. Prior to 2002, Ireland used the punt (Irish pound) as its circulated currency. The euro was introduced as an accounting currency in 1999.