An tÓglach October 1965

All aspects of military life are regulated by an appropriate Defence Force Regulation (DFR) or Administrative Instruction.

The ceremonial drill to be used at funerals was committed to print in February 1943 when DFR A.6. Deaths and Funerals was first published. However the funeral exercises, including the reversed arms, had been in use since the early days of the Irish state. The article below printed in October 1925 in the Army publication of the time, An tÓglách, refers to the symbolism of the funeral exercises.

To view this article in its original context or to search a complete set of An tÓglách 1918-1933, please click here

A6 Deaths Funerals Second Reprint 1962

DFR A.6. Deaths and Funerals was reviewed and reprinted in December 1962 but no changes were made to the drill. Flick through the interactive copy of the DFR below. Details of the funeral exercises start at page 17. 

Letter from D/Training outlining his recommendations for retaining the Defence Forces' Ceremonial Drill

When revision of the drill was again considered in 1968 the Director of Training recommended against altering it. One of his recommendations was that the drill had been used at President Kennedy's funeral which gave it a greater historical significance. 

Irish Army Funeral Drill

Search through the images below to see the Irish Army Funeral Drill demonstrated by Sgt Feeney, 2 Motor Squadron. This demonstration shows the newly introduced FN rifle rather than the Lee Enfield rifle used by the Cadets at Arlington.

Lee Enfield Rifle No 4 Mark II

The Lee Enfield rifle was issued to soldiers of the Permanent Defence Forces from the 1920s until the early 1960s. It continued in use with the FCÁ until the mid 1980s. 

By November 1963 the FN had replaced the Lee Enfield No 4 Mk 2 as the standard issue rifle in the Defence Forces. However the Cadets were still using the Lee Enfield for ceremonial purposes.