'Ultimate Irish collectible' – Original copy of 1916 Proclamation goes up for auction for huge sum

'Ultimate Irish collectible' – Original copy of 1916 Proclamation goes up for auction for huge sum

IRISH history fans can get their hands on an original copy of the 1916 Proclamation when it goes up for auction next month – however they’ll need deep pockets to land the rare item.

Dublin auctioneers Whyte’s have placed an upper estimate of €120,000 on the document, which goes under the hammer on September 15.

However it could go for much more than that – another copy sold for €390,000 at a Dublin auction in 2004.

Rare item

There are thought to be only around 30 original copies left of an original printing of less than 500.

Most were destroyed during and after the Rising and being printed on poor quality paper, those pasted outdoors disintegrated easily.

At least six copies are in public institutions such as Dáil Éireann, the National Museum and University College Dublin.

Two exist in British Government archives and there is one in the Royal Collection in Buckingham Palace.


Describing it as a “document that launched an uprising that changed Ireland forever”, the listing compares it to Declaration of the United States of America.

The 1916 proclamation was issued by the Irish Volunteers and the Irish Citizen Army and proclaimed Ireland independent from the United Kingdom.

Patrick Pearse read the Proclamation outside the General Post Office, heralding the beginning of the Easter Rising.

While the Rising was swiftly put down, it reinvigorated support for Irish independence.

“This is the ultimate Irish collectible, sans pareil,” says the listing.

Whyte’s Eclectic Collector auction takes place at the Freemasons Hall, Molesworth Street, Dublin on September 15 from 11am.