THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED IRISHMEN IN 1791.

1st. This society is constituted for the purpose of forwarding a brotherhood of affection, a communion of rights, and a union of power among Irishmen of every religious persuasion, and thereby to, obtain a complete reform in the legislature, founded on the principles of civil, political, and religious liberty.

2nd. The members of this society shall either be ordinary or Honorary, and shall not he limited to any description of men, but to extend to all persons who may be deemed eligible.

3rd. Every candidate for admission into this society shall be proposed by one member, and seconded by another, both of whom shall vouch for his character and principles, and whose name shall be entered on the books of the society,; the candidate to be balloted for on the society`s subsequent meeting, and if one of the beans be black, he shall stand rejected.

4th. As a fund is necessary the better to carry into effect the purpose of this association , each member, on his admission, shall pay to the society the sum of [ ] and per month while he shall continue a member.

5th. The officers of this society shall be a secretary and treasurer, who shall be appointed by ballot every three months, viz. on every first meeting in November, February, May, and August.

6th. This society, in manner aforesaid , shall appoint two members, who with the secretary shall act for the society in a baronial committee, which members shall receive on each night of their attendance on said committee.

7th. This society shall in manner afore said appoint members, who,. with the treasurer; shall form a committee of finance, &c

8th. At the request of either committee, or any members signing a requisition, the secretary, or if he should be absent, the treasurer ,shall call an extra meeting of the society.

9th. This society shall meet in ordinary every evening at [ ] o`clock, the president to be chosen by the majority of the members present, of whom [ ] shall be a quorum.

10th. Every respect and deference shall be paid to the chairman. On his rising from his seat and taking off his hat, there shall be silence, and the members seated. He shall be judge of order and propriety; shall grant leave of absence at pleasure; shall not enter into debate. If any member behave improperly, he is empowered to direct an apology; or if refractory, fine him in any sum not exceeding [ ] and on refusal to do as directed, he stall therefore be expelled the society for [ ]

11th. No member shall speak more than twice to a question, without leave from the chairman.

12th. Every person elected a member of this society, whether ordinary or honorary, shall, previous to his admission, take the following test in a separate apartment, in the presence of the persons who proposed and seconded him, and one member appointed 'by the chairman; or in case of absence of one of the two persons, the chairman shall appoint another member to act for the absentee ; after which the new member shall be brought into the body of the society, and there take the test in the usual form.

TEST.

In the awful presence of God.

I A. B., do voluntarily declare, that I will persevere in endeavouring to form a brotherhood of affection among Irishmen of every religious persuasion, and that I will also persevere in my endeavours to obtain an equal, full, and adequate representation of all the people of Ireland.

I do further declare that neither hope, fears, rewards, or punishments, shall ever induce me, directly or indirectly, to inform on, or give evidence against any member of this or similar societies, for any act or expression of theirs done or made collectively or individually, in or out of this society, in pursuance of the spirit of this obligation.'

13th. A member of any other acknowledged society, being introduced to this society by a member, shall, upon producing a certificate ,signed by the secretary, and sealed with the seal of the society to which he may belong, and taking the foregoing test, be admitted to attend the sittings of this society.

14th. No member shall have a certificate certificate but by applying to the committee, who shall grant it, unless the member is leaving his place of residence, which certificate shall be lodged with the secretary on his return.

15th. When this society shall amount to the number of thirty-six members, it shall be equally divided by lot, that is, the names of all the members shall be put into a hat or box, the secretary or treasurer shall draw out eighteen individually, which eighteen shall be considered the senior society and the remaining eighteen the junior, who shall apply to the baronial committee through the delegates of the senior society., for a number; and that this division shall only take place in the months of October, January, April, and July. The fund shall also be equally divided.

16tth. That 'no society shall he recognized by any committee, unless approved of and taking the test, and amounting in number to seven members

See also the Volunteers and the avowed policies of Dr William Drennan and Wolfe Tone which by 1795 - 96 were much more republican in their view.

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