A city torn between war and peace

A city torn between war and peace
Red Cross officers carry the coffin of a soldier killed in the Civil War, in Dublin in August 1922. Picture: Getty

Non-fiction: A City in Civil War: Dublin 1921-1924. By Padraig Yeates. Gill & Macmillan, €27.99. Reviewed by Andrew Lynch.

Sean O’Casey’s The Shadow Of A Gunman opened at Dublin’s Abbey Theatre in April 1923, shortly before the end of the Civil War. Security was extremely tight, with soldiers standing guard at the entrance and another one inside showing actors how to hold a revolver correctly. Audiences had to be reassured that the sound of bombs and bullets were stage devices, not the real thing on the streets outside.

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