The armed Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC) was Ireland's major police force from the early nineteenth century until the partition of Ireland in 1922. A separate civic police force, the unarmed Dublin Metropolitan Police controlled the capital, and the cities of Derry and Belfast, originally with their own police forces, later had special divisions within the RIC. About seventy-five percent of the RIC were Roman Catholic and about twenty-five percent were of various Protestant denominations. The RIC's successful system of policing influenced the Canadian North-West Mounted Police, the Victoria Police force in Australia, and the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary in Newfoundland. In consequence of partition, the RIC was disbanded in 1922 and replaced by the Garda Síochána south of the new border, and the Royal Ulster Constabulary to its north.
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