Drafting The Constitution at the Shelbourne

The chair in the Shelbourne Museum inscribed; Darrell Figgis

The chair in the Shelbourne Museum inscribed; Darrell Figgis

In 1922  the Provisional Government under Chairmanship of Michael Collins was formed. On January 30th a Committee set up to draft the Free State Constitution . Darrell Figgis, was eleced the Vice Chairman, and the acting Chairman was Michael Collins.


In May 1922, The Shelbourne played host to its most historic meeting – the drafting of the Irish Constitution. Bunreacht na hÉireann was drawn up in room 112, under the leadership of Michael Collins. This room is now The Constitution Room.

The Free State Constitution was ratified by the Irish Provisional Government December 5th 1922.

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The Constitution Room is preserved pretty much as it was when the Constitution was drafted. The table pictured below is the original. It is used by head concierge and historian Denis T. C. O’Brien when he gives his historical talks on the third Sunday of every month.

DSCF2030Denis C. T. O’Brien, head concierge and historian at the Shelbourne

Darrell Figgis is well credited for the part he played in the creating the first Constitution of Ireland, in the Shelbourne Hotel. The Chair he sat on is on display in the museum as is a copy of the original draft. They have even paid tribute to Figgis by naming a suite after him on the third floor, the only dedication to him anywhere.


Thanks to
Denis C. T. O’Brien, Shelbourne Hotel
Edward King, Achill
Photos by courtesy of the Shelbourne Hotel