1990 in Ireland

Events from the year 1990 in Ireland.

Blank Ireland.svg

See also:1990 in Northern Ireland
Other events of 1990
List of years in Ireland



  • 1 January
    • The Northern Ireland Fair Employment Act became law.
    • Ennis celebrated its 750th birthday.
    • Ireland began a 6-month European Presidency.
  • 3 April – there was all-party support for the Criminal Justice Bill to abolish capital punishment for all offences and replaced it with lengthy prison sentences (although in practice the penalty for murder has always been commuted in Ireland since 1954).
  • 26 April – the Labour Party selected Mary Robinson as its candidate in the presidential election.
  • 4 May - the second People In Need Telethon took place.
  • 11 June – the Irish football team began their first appearance at a World Cup Final's with a 1–1 draw against England in Cagliari in Italy. Kevin Sheedy scored for Ireland, with Gary Lineker scoring for England.
  • 17 June – Ireland's World Cup continued with a goalless draw against Egypt.
  • 20 June – the Irish Pound coin was introduced into circulation to replace the note of the same denomination.
  • 21 June – the Irish football team completed their World Cup group stage unbeaten and reached the last 16 group with a 1–1 draw against Holland.
  • 25 June – Ireland reached the World Cup quarter-finals by beating Romania on penalties after a goalless draw in the last 16 tie, in Genoa. As of 2016, this was Ireland's best World Cup result
  • 30 June – Ireland were eliminated from the World Cup Final by a goal from Toto Schillaci in the quarter final match against the hosts, Italy, in Rome.
  • 1 July – enormous crowds gathered in Dublin when 500,000 people came to pay tribute to the Irish football team and to former South African President, Nelson Mandela. The football team had reached the World Cup quarter final in Italia '90 before being beaten by Italy, while Mandela accepted the Freedom of the City of Dublin, granted to him two years earlier, at an open-air ceremony outside the Mansion House in Dawson Street.[1]
  • 2 July – Deputy President of the ANC, Nelson Mandela, addressed a joint session of both houses of the Oireachtas.
  • 11 July – the Criminal Justice Act abolished capital punishment for all offences and replaced it with lengthy prison sentences.[2]
  • 24 July – the IRA killed three policemen and a nun in a bomb attack near Armagh.
  • 24 August – Brian Keenan was released after 1,574 days in captivity in Beirut.
  • September – Janet Catterall became the first woman in Ireland to be ordained as a priest in the Church of Ireland.[3]
  • 28 September – the centenary of People's Park, Dún Laoghaire, was celebrated.
  • 24 October – the IRA killed six soldiers and a civilian in proxy bomb attacks at Derry and Newry.
  • 25 October – presidential candidate Brian Lenihan denied that he tried to contact President Hillery to stop the dissolution of the Dáil in 1982. This was in spite of a taped interview where he confirmed that he did.
  • 31 October – Tánaiste and Minister for Defence Brian Lenihan was dismissed from the government over the telephone call controversy.
  • 9 November – Mary Robinson was elected the seventh President of Ireland.
  • 3 December – Mary Robinson was inaugurated as the first female President of Ireland. Patrick Hillery retired after 14 years as Head of State.
  • Undated

Arts and literatureEdit


Gaelic gamesEdit



World Cup 1990
Group Stage
Ireland 1–1 England
Ireland 0–0 Egypt
Ireland 1–1 Netherlands
Ireland qualified for the knock out stage
Knockout stage
Ireland 0–0 (AET 5–4 PEN) Romania
Ireland qualified for the quarter final stage
Ireland 0–1 Italy
Ireland were knocked out at the quarter final stage



See alsoEdit


  1. ^ FOC032 Mandela 1990 Archived 12 December 2013 at the Wayback Machine Dublin City Public Libraries & Archive, 2013-01-16.
    • Irish Times (2 July 1990). "Heroes' welcome for team: Streets lined by at least 500,000 joyful fans". The Irish Times. Dublin.
    • Irish Press (2 July 1990). "Thanks, lads! 500,000 fans cheer Jack and his heroes". Irish Press. Dublin.
    • Dunphy, Eamon (7 October 2013). The Rocky Road. Penguin Ireland. ISBN 9781844883325. Our plane landed at Dublin one hour before the team's. Flying in over the city we could see the vast crowd, an estimated 500,000, gathered for the homecoming party.
    • Happy memories of asking the Nelson Mandela about his first vote Irish Times, 2013-12-06.
  2. ^ "Criminal Justice Act, 1990". Irish Statute Book. Retrieved 3 August 2012.
  3. ^ O'Toole, Fintan (6 July 2012). "First Among Unequals". The Irish Times. Retrieved 6 July 2012.
  4. ^ Wolf, Matt (27 May 1990). "Theater: Novel Casting for 'Three Sisters' – Three Sisters". The New York Times. Retrieved 16 June 2012.