Friday 9 December 2016

Martina Devlin: Simple gesture was a tribute to those who died for our freedom

Published 18/05/2011 | 05:00

The two wreaths laid by President Mary McAleese and Queen Elizabeth yesterday
The two wreaths laid by President Mary McAleese and Queen Elizabeth yesterday

IT IS not a common sight to see a monarch dip their head. Crowned rulers are more accustomed to being on the receiving end of acts of deference.

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But it happened yesterday at the Garden of Remembrance when Queen Elizabeth laid a wreath and stepped back, before quite conspicuously bending her neck and upper body. There was no mistaking the gesture -- she was bowing. And not in a half-hearted way either.

I don't know if the men and women who struggled for Irish freedom would have been moved by her salute or surprised by it. But I can't imagine that they would have been indifferent.

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