Battle of Boyne / Orangemen's Day

Quick Facts - GB

AKA NameThe Twelfth, The Glorious Twelfth and Orange Day
Hashtags#Orangemansday, #UniversityOrangeism
Related Hashtags#NorthernIreland, #OTD, #BattleOfTheBoyne
2022 Date12 July 2022
2023 Date12 July 2023
Battle of Boyne / Orangemen's Day

Battle of Boyne / Orangemen's Day History

The Battle of the Boyne, also know as the Twelfth and Orange Day, commemorates a historic event that took place in 1690. The titular battle was fought on the banks of the River Boyne to the north west of Dublin between King James II and his successor, William III, for the control of Ireland. During the day, many walks and marches take place, marching bands perform too. Marchers tend to belong to lodges, when they march banners displaying slogans and historical symbols are waved.

The day is only a holiday Ireland and Northern Ireland, the rest of the UK does not celebrate it. The Battle of the Boyne was fought on 1 July 1690, according to the old Julian calendar. This was reformed and replaced with the Gregorian calendar across the British Empire in 1752, repositioning the 'date' of the Battle of the Boyne to 11 July. This year the Battle of the Boyne (Orangemen’s Day) takes place on July 12.

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Battle of Boyne / Orangemen's Day Facts & Quotes

  • The Pope backed the Protestant William, this was done as part of a Grand Alliance against Louis XIV’s warmongering in Europe.
  • William’s army was multi-national, consisting of Dutch, Danish, Germans and Huguenots (French Protestants). They were fearsome, professional and well-paid
  • James’ army was made up of woefully under-equipped Irish infantry. They had excellent morale and fine cavalry from Louis XVI.
  • The river Boyne is significant as it was the last natural barrier between William and Dublin- the stronghold of James. This would be the last time crowned kings of England, Scotland and Ireland would meet in battle.
  • For a tourist, the cultural, historical and religious aspects of the parade are what they should see - Harold Weir, Orangeman (about the Orange Day parades)

Battle of Boyne / Orangemen's Day Top Events and Things to Do

  • Visit the parade. There are many Orange Order parades throughout Northern Ireland.
  • For a less crowded couple of days, try Portrush on the north coast for stunning scenery and local ice cream. Irish culture and identity owes a lot to the dramatic scenery along the coast.
  • Visit the Boyne Valley. It is very scenic. Surrounding the Boyne River is a beautiful valley with lively towns- Drogheda and Navan. HAJ
  • Watch a film about Irish history, this small country has had a tumultuous past that is worth exploring. Our suggestions include:
    1) Hunger (2008)
    2) Bloody Sunday (2002)
    3) Elephant (1989)
  • Read a book on the history of the Troubles in Ireland. Have you tried:
    1) The Making of Modern Ireland 1603-1923 by JC Beckett
    2) Modern Ireland 1600-1972 by RF Foster
    3) Ireland: a Social and Cultural History 1922-1985 by Terence Brown

Battle of Boyne / Orangemen's Day - References and Related Sites

BBC: Battle of Boyne Northern Ireland

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