No. 42 NAI 2003/17/181
Dublin, 1 April 1937
The President has carefully considered the question of letting Mr. MacDonald have the text of the Article of the new Constitution referred to in our conversation today. He feels that in all the circumstances, and in particular in the interest of the relations between the two countries, the new Constitution should be framed by the representatives of the Irish people solely in the interests of this country and without any consultation with any member of the British Commonwealth. For that reason he thinks it better not to send Mr. MacDonald the draft of the Constitution or the draft of the Article in question. You can inform Mr. MacDonald, however, that provision is being made in the new Constitution for the continuance of the position created by the Executive Authority (External Affairs) Act, and that in fact that Act will be continued. You may also inform him that there will be no article in the new Constitution corresponding to Article 1 of the present Constitution and there will be no mention of the King.
It is essential that the President should be able to say, if the question is asked, that the Constitution has been framed without any consultation with the British Government and that the latter are not in any way responsible, whether by way of suggestion or otherwise, for anything that appears in the Constitution.
[signed] SEÁN MURPHY
The Royal Irish Academy's Documents on Irish Foreign Policy series has published an eBook of confidential correspondence on the 1921 Anglo-Irish Treaty negotiations.
The international network of Editors of Diplomatic Documents was founded in 1988. Delegations from different parts of the world met for the first time in London in 1989.
Read more ....