The History of the Great Irish Famine of 1847 (3rd ed.) (1902) eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 704 pages of information about The History of the Great Irish Famine of 1847 (3rd ed.) (1902).

Thus was the cultivation of the potato extended in various ways, until it had become the principal food of nineteen-twentieths of the population long before the Famine of ’47.


[1] Raleigh earned this property by some terrible services.  He was an officer in the expedition of the Lord Deputy Gray, when he attacked the Italian camp on Dun-an-oir, at Smerwick harbour in Kerry.  After some time the Italians yielded, but on what precise terms it is now impossible to say, the accounts of the transaction are so various and conflicting.  Indeed, O’Daly says the English were the first to send a flag of truce.  Anyhow, the Italian garrison, which had come to aid the Irish, fell into the power of the English, and here is Dr. Leland’s account of what followed:—­“Wingfield was commissioned to disarm them, and when this service was performed an English company was sent into the fort.  The Irish rebels found they were reserved for execution by martial law.  The Italian general and some of the officers were made prisoners of war, but the garrison was butchered in cold blood; nor is it without pain that we find a service so horrid and detestable committed to Sir Walter Raleigh.”

[2] The people of Quito said papas.  The Spaniards corrupted this to battata, and the Portuguese to the softer batata.

[3] Edwards (Life of Sir W. Raleigh.  M’Millan, 1868), says Hooker is the only contemporary writer who asserts that Raleigh sailed with this expedition, and Edwards adds, “It is by no means certain that he did so.”  But from the following entry in the State Papers of Elizabeth’s reign it appears quite certain that he did sail with it:—­“The names of all the ships, officers, and gentlemen, with the pieces of ordnance, etc., gone in the voyage with Sir Humfrey Gylberte,—­Capt.  Walter Rauley, commanding the Falcon,” &c—­State Papers (Domestic), Vol. 126, No. 149, Nov. 18 & 19, 1578.

Mr. Edwards may not have met this entry, as he does not refer to it.

In spite of his many failures, Raleigh was, to the last, confident in the final success of his scheme for colonizing America.  After the failure of nine expeditions, and on the ere of his fall, he said:  “I shall yet live to see it (America) an English nation.” (Edwards.)

[4] Perhaps Kartoffel, one of the German names for potato, is a corruption of this.

[5] Mr. Edwards says, I know not on what authority, that the land given to Raleigh was about 12,000 acres.  The grants are set forth plainly enough in the following entries:—­“The Queen, desirous to have the Province of Munster, in the realm of Ireland, re-peopled and inhabited with civil, loyal, and dutiful subjects, in consideration of the great charge and trouble which Sir Walter Raleghe sustained in transporting and planting English people into the province, and

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