Shane Horgan's dramatic last-gasp try saw Ireland emerge victorious from an absorbing Twickenham contest and claim a second Triple Crown in three years.
The Irish led 11-8 at the break after Horgan cancelled out Jamie Noon's early try and Ronan O'Gara landed two penalties to one from Andy Goode.
Steve Borthwick's try put England ahead before Denis Leamy's score restored the visitors' advantage.
Goode landed two penalties to make it 24-21 but Horgan pounced at the death.
The try was referred to the television referee, who decided Horgan had not put a foot in touch, and O'Gara's conversion put the seal on Ireland's third consecutive win over England.
It was not the unlikely 34-point win they needed at the outset to deny France the title, but was nevertheless cause for joyous celebrations.
For England though, an eighth defeat in 15 Tests under Andy Robinson will only increase the pressure on the coach, despite an improved display.
His side started like a side fired up after a week of criticism following their Paris humiliation.
They won a free-kick at a first-minute scrum which Martin Corry took quickly, and from smartly recycled ball, Noon raced onto Goode's precise pass to score in the left corner.
Noon's try in the second minute gave England the perfect start
Goode was unable to convert from wide out, and Ireland were allowed back into the game after a Ben Cohen error in the seventh minute.
The wing slipped trying to deal with Brian O'Driscoll's kick ahead and was slow to recover, allowing Horgan to nip in and poke the ball to the line.
The ball appeared to touch the line as the Irish wing reached it, but Rob Dickson's flag stayed down and Horgan followed up to score.
O'Gara missed the conversion but nudged Ireland ahead with a penalty in the 13th minute after Joe Worsley had pulled down an Irish maul.
England should have been at least level after winning two penalties in quick succession but Goode missed them both.
Hooker Lee Mears showed up well with several charges but England could not keep the ball long enough and Ireland should have scored again on the half-hour, only for O'Driscoll to fire his pass to D'Arcy too high.
O'Gara did extend the Irish lead with a penalty after Simon Shaw fell offside, earning a yellow card in the process after trying to impede Peter Stringer.
Goode did belatedly find his range to make it 11-8, but another incursion into the line from the impressive Geordan Murphy should have yielded more points for Ireland.
But O'Gara pulled another attempt wide to leave the game finely balanced at the interval.
England brought on Mike Tindall for Noon, who cut his head open earlier in the game, but O'Gara restored Ireland's six-point advantage on the resumption after Lewis Moody conceded a penalty.
Goode replied in kind immediately, prefacing England's best passage of play.
They launched themselves at the Irish line for five minutes but appeared to have wasted their efforts when they kicked a penalty to touch and Paul O'Connell stole the line-out.
But they finally found a way through when Goode's pass sent Borthwick over on a great angle for his first Test try.
Goode's conversion put England 18-14 up, but the game turned again after 57 minutes when England made a hash of a line-out on their own line.
Calling it long to the isolated Moody, Leamy reached the throw ahead of the England flanker and grasped the loose ball to touch down, O'Gara adding the extras.
But Goode drew England level after 68 minutes, and when Ireland infringed at a ruck with five minutes left, the Leicester fly-half stepped up to land what appeared the winning kick.
But Ireland launched one last break-out, and despite stopping Horgan at the first attempt, Moody could not prevent him dotting down in the right corner to spark Irish celebrations.
England: Voyce; Cueto, Noon, Abbott, Cohen; Goode, Ellis; Sheridan, Mears, White; Borthwick, Shaw; Worsley, Moody, Corry (capt).
Replacements: Thompson, Freshwater, Grewcock, Dallaglio, Dawson, Walder, Tindall.
Ireland: Murphy; Horgan, O'Driscoll (capt), D'Arcy, Trimble; O'Gara, Stringer; Horan, Flannery, Hayes; O'Connell, O'Kelly; Easterby, Wallace, Leamy.
Replacements: R Best, S Best, O'Callaghan, O'Connor, Reddan, Humphreys, Dempsey.