September 20, 1803

Irish nationalist Robert Emmet is executed by the British in Dublin on this day in 1803. Born in Co. Cork on March 4, 1778 to a wealthy Protestant family, Emmet attended Trinity College Dublin. After school, he travelled to France and managed to get Napoleon to offer French aid for an Irish rebellion. When the 1798 rebellion by the United Irishmen failed, Emmet attempted to reorganize the United Irish Society. In 1799, the British tried to arrest him but he fled for French in search of support for a future rebellion. When he returned in 1802, he began planning another rebellion for 1803. The rebels failed at capturing Dublin Castle and the British defeated Emmet’s troops. He was arrested on August 25, found guilty on September 19 for high treason and killed on September 20.

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