This was halted by an unprecedented financial crisis that began in 2008, in conjunction with the concurrent global economic crash.
Ireland is again quickly ascending league tables comparing wealth and prosperity internationally.
Ireland is a member of the European Union and is a founding member of the Council of Europe and the OECD.
The Irish government has followed a policy of military neutrality through non-alignment since immediately prior to World War II and the country is consequently not a member of NATO, The Constitution of Ireland, adopted in 1937, provides that "the name of the State is Éire, or, in the English language, Ireland".
With hope of ensuring the implementation of the Act at the end of the war through Ireland's engagement in the war, Redmond and his Irish National Volunteers supported Britain and its Allies.
175,000 men joined Irish regiments of the 10th (Irish) and 16th (Irish) divisions of the New British Army, while Unionists joined the 36th (Ulster) divisions.
The capital and largest city is Dublin, which is located on the eastern part of the island, and whose metropolitan area is home to around a third of the country's 4.75 million inhabitants.