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KINGS OF DALKEY (1787 to the present day)
A photo of King Larry The freemen of Dalkey inherited the right to elect this King through the boredom of young bloods back in the Dublin of 1787. They formed a club into which they roped wits, poets and thinkers. They summoned "Pimlico Parliament" - named after the Liberties area, and from an Assembly Room they hurled broadsides at the country's humbug and the pomposity of the Castle (Dublin Castle) and its hacks.

The full title is most impressive "King of Dalkey, Emperor of the Muglins, Prince of the Holy Island of Magee, Baron of Bulloch, Seigneur of Sandycove, Defender of the Faith and Respector of All Others, Elector of Lambay and Ireland's Eye, and Sovereign of the Most Illustrious Order of the Lobster and Periwinkle."(Click the Loudspeaker Icon and hear it first hand for King Larry the First) During the years twenty knee-breeched courtiers in 18th century costume attended the King of Dalkey on Coronation Day. In later times the costumes were hired from a theatrical costumiers in Dublin. Fun was the royal order of the day for all concerned.(King of Dalkey Festival Programme 1983)

More than 20,000 attended the last regal procession, carnival and coronation anniversary on August 20,A photo of King Larry 1797 of Stephen Armitage-pawnbroker and printer- "King Stephen the First, King of Dalkey" Then came terrorismthe (1798 Rising) that wound up the strange and hilariously eventful history of this extra-territorial monarchy. However, the tradition was successfully revived in 1934, 1965 and again in 1983 and is unfortunately dormant at present. The following articles (collected by Alice Cullen) concern the "Royal goings on" make very interesting reading. They are a barometer of the times that were in it.
The first mention of a Dalkey King is taken from 1780 Dublin Historical Record Vol. 1V No. 2. December 1941-February, 1942 Glimpses of Old Dalkey by F.M. O'Flanagan.

Local tradition says that Hugh Dempsey was crowned "King of Dalkey" about 1780. On the south side of the old church we find another stone which says: "This stone was erected by Mr. Murtagh Dempsey of the City of Dublin in Memory of his affectionate son Hugh Dempsey blockmake of said City who departed this Life April 7th 1790."

The following Articles are listed in chronological order, with a brief description and then a link to the full version.

1790 - When revolution threatened from Dalkey Island!
Officials of the time were worried Dalkey might secede from the rest of the country and arrested the elected King O'Mara. O'Mara, a well-known solicitor was as famous for his wit as he was for his convivial hospitality gave a good account of himself Link

The King of Dalkey St Patrick's Day
Provided by Harry Latham from 18th Century Newspaper This is an account of Stephen Armitage and his encounter with Mr Merridew and the notorious Major Sirr.

1840 The Irish Penny Journal
This rather long but beautifully written article presents a very full account of the Sound and Island of Dalkey and a wonderful description of the annual King of Dalkey coronation in the 18th Century.

1940 Old Dublin Society to Visit Dalkey
"The visit will coincide with the anniversary of the coronation of the president of the society, Alderman T. Kelly, T.D."
`To be continued
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