Date of Completion
Honors College Thesis
Type of Thesis
College of Arts and Science Honors, Honors College
union, Britain, Scotland, England, Ireland
On May 1, 1707, the independent countries of England and Scotland came together to form one nation, which they called Great Britain. Ninety-four years later, on January 1, 1801, Ireland joined the Anglo-Scottish union, creating the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. In theory, these two unions, and the acts that created them, should have used similar language and accomplished similar objectives, since the goal of both of these pieces of legislation was the same: unification. Yet in reality, these two acts had radically different outcomes and used radically different language. This project will attempt to identify the differences between and surrounding these two similar but very different acts.
The Anglo-Scottish union and the British-Irish union are characterized in two separate ways: incorporating and controlling. In the Anglo-Scottish union, the elements of the two countries were incorporated into one greater nation of Great Britain. That does not necessarily mean that the two countries were completely equal: while Churches of Scotland and England were individually preserved the political institutions of Scotland were absorbed into the English system to create Great Britain. The British-Irish union, on the other hand, involved much greater control of the Irish by the British. Britain’s preoccupation with power, which is evident in the language of the acts, meant that the government and the Church of Ireland were completely absorbed into the British system, while the less savory (or in other words, Catholic) aspects of Ireland were ignored.
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Colvin, Hunter A., "A Comparative Study of the Anglo-British Act of Union (1707) and the British-Irish Act of Union (1801)" (2017). UVM Honors College Senior Theses. 214.
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