John Devoy

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Devoy, John (1842–1928). Irish nationalist. Devoy was born in Kildare and joined the Fenians as a young man. His task was to foster disaffection in the British army and he was arrested in 1862. Released in 1871 on condition of exile, he spent the rest of his life in America, where he organized the Clan na Gael as a fund-raising group, affiliated to the Irish Republican Brotherhood. In 1878 he initiated the ‘new departure’, a proposal for a rapprochement between the Fenians and Parnell's parliamentarians, but it was rejected by the IRB the following year. In 1915 Devoy supported Casement's mission to Germany to obtain arms, assuring the Germans that Casement had his ‘fullest confidence’. After Casement's arrest, Devoy distanced himself.

J. A. Cannon