The People Arose In 69

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This 1990 image of the Clowney Street phoenix shows (compared to the 1981 and 1987 versions) that the four provinces have been painted out, perhaps in preparation for repainting, as they would be added again later.

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Copyright © 1990 Peter Moloney

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A Traitor And A Murderess

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“[The] Anglo-Irish Agreement proved one to be a traitor, the other the murderess she is.” The portraits are presumably of Margaret Thatcher and Garrett FitzGerald, who signed the agreement at Hillsborough Castle in November, 1985, though it is difficult to tell them apart – which is perhaps the point. A good picture of the pair can be found at the top of this Guardian article on the crafting of the document. This is the fifth (extreme right) of five mural on a wall in Ballycolman estate, Strabane.

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Copyright © 1989 Peter Moloney

1916-1982/Break Thatcher’s Back

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Here is a 1982 image of the Break Thatcher’s Back mural in Rockmore Road, Belfast, showing a blanket man with outstretched arms demanding “status now”, framed by a large “H” and surrounded by barbed wire, Tricolours, and the Starry Plough. In 1981, there was a Sean O’Casey quote on the left, rather than a lily and the year of the Easter Rising — 1916.

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Copyright © 1982 LC “free belfast”

The People Arose In 69

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This is (as of 2016) the oldest continuously maintained mural in Belfast (in Clowney Street). It was touched up in 1987 and 1990, and was repainted in 2013. It features a central phoenix and the shields of the four provinces, and two rhyming couplets: The people arose in 69/they will do it again at any time. Maggie Thatcher think again/don’t let our brave men die in vain.

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Copyright © 1981 LC

O’Casey/Break Thatcher’s Back

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The quote on the left is from Sean O’Casey, not Bobby Sands MP: “You cannot put a rope around the neck of an idea; you cannot put an idea up against the barrack-square wall and riddle it with bullets; you cannot confine it in the strongest prison cell that your slaves could ever build.”

On the right, an H-Block blanketman is on his knees, protesting for (political) “status now”, surrounded by barbed wire and two flags on halberds: the Irish Tricolour and the Starry Plough.

Rockmore Rd, Belfast

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Copyright © 1981 LC