Over 500 Easter Rising commemoration events around the country today

Wreaths will be laid at seven locations around Dublin which were key to the Easter Rising as commemorations marking the 100th anniversary of the rebellion continue across the country.

Rebels took up positions a century ago at Boland's Mill, the Jacob's Factory on Bishop Street, City Hall, The Four Courts, The Royal College of Surgeons, Moore Street and the South Dublin Union on the site of the present-day St James' Hospital.

The makeshift garrisons were chosen for their strategic locations and proximity to British Army strongholds in the city.

As part of the ongoing commemorations, wreaths will be laid at each of the sites during Easter Monday.

President Michael D Higgins as he lays a wreath at the Stone Breakers' Yard in Kilmainham Gaol

At the same time, there will also be four wreath-layings in Athenry, Cork, Enniscorthy and Ashbourne.

During the day, more than 500 free talks, exhibitions, debates, films, performances and dramatisations will explore the tumultuous events which played a pivotal role in shaping Ireland.

President Michael D Higgins will also make an address at a symposium entitled 'Remembering 1916' at the Mansion House on Dawson Street.

Hundreds of thousands of people lined the streets of Dublin yesterday for a huge military parade, a centrepiece event in a year of celebrations marking of one of the most defining episodes of Irish history.

President Higgins laid a wreath outside the General Post Office, the former rebel headquarters.

After Captain Peter Kelleher re-enacted the reading of the Proclamation, spontaneous applause erupted from the onlookers.

Scores of descendants of the rebels looked on.

Former presidents Mary McAleese and Mary Robinson, former taoisigh Bertie Ahern and Brian Cowen, Dublin Lord Mayor Criona Ni Dhalaigh as well as Northern Ireland Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness, Garda chief Noirin O'Sullivan and British ambassador to Ireland Dominick Chilcott were among the dignitaries attending.

As part of the ceremony, children representing the four provinces of Ireland - Ulster, Leinster, Connacht and Munster - laid daffodils under the portico of the GPO as a lone piper played Down By The Sally Gardens.

Fr Seamus Madigan, head chaplain of the Defence Forces, said the flower-laying was a "symbol of the unshakeable resolve to live together on this island in peace and harmony".

President Higgins used an address to descendants on Saturday to call on Irish people to take responsibility for building a true Republic, and said the ideals of the Proclamation can still inspire today.

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