One Bold Deed of Open Treason: The Berlin Diary of Roger Casement 1914-1916


Angus Mitchell

February 2016

Roger Casement is an intriguing figure in Irish history who played a crucial role in the 1916 Rising. His Berlin Diary is an astonishingly candid insight into his mind and motives during his last acts before the Easter Rising and his execution. One Bold Deed of Open Treason is masterfully selected & edited by leading Casement expert Angus Mitchell. The Diary contains all the elements of a spy novel: betrayal, subterfuge and treason.


One Bold Deed of Open Treason describes the astonishing journey by Roger Casement to Germany in 1914, via New York and Norway. Arriving into Berlin under a false identity, Casement entered a space of conspiracy and subterfuge. Through his vivid and gripping diary entries, a picture emerges of a man caught in the crossfire of international events and spiralling towards a tragic denouement.

In recording his daily thoughts, emotions and movements, Casement chronicles his despair at the conflict he witnessed, his hopeless mission to raise an Irish brigade and his attempts to promote the cause of Ireland in an escalating world crisis. With an expert editorial hand, Angus Mitchell provides clear context to Casement’s diaries, revealing his gruelling visit to the Western Front, the shocking interplay between the Easter Rising and the international theatre of the First World War, and the grand, sacrificial conclusion of his life.

Table of Contents

Introduction: The Politics of Diary Writing

The Diaries

Appendix 1: Why I Went to Germany
Appendix 2: Roger Casement’s Letter to Sir Edward Grey
Appendix 3: The Treaty
Appendix 4 Dramatis Personae

About the Author

Angus Mitchell is a historian and cultural critic, who has spent the last twenty years investigating the life and legacy of the British consul and Irish nationalist intellectual, Roger Casement, and publishing widely on this subject. He is based in the Kemmy Business School at the University of Limerick.