An Illustrated History of Ireland from AD 400 to 1800 eBook

Mary Frances Cusack
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 946 pages of information about An Illustrated History of Ireland from AD 400 to 1800.
the greatest conceivable blessing to the emigrants, but was an absolutely indispensable step towards improving the condition of those who remained at home;” and then the old calumnies are resuscitated about the Irish being “obstinately idle and wilfully improvident,” as if it had not been proved again and again that the only ground on which such appellations can be applied to them in Ireland is, that their obstinacy consists in objecting to work without fair remuneration for their labour, and their improvidence in declining to labour for the benefit of their masters.  It is the old story, “you are idle, you are idle,”—­it is the old demand, “make bricks without straw,”—­and then, by way of climax, we are assured that these “poor creatures” are assisted to emigrate with the tenderest consideration, and that, in fact, emigration is a boon for which they are grateful.

It is quite true that many landlords pay their tenants to emigrate, and send persons to see them safe out of the country; but it is absolutely false that the people emigrate willingly.  No one who has witnessed the departure of emigrants dare make such an assertion.  They are offered their choice between starvation and emigration, and they emigrate.  If a man were offered his choice between penal servitude and hanging, it is probable he would prefer penal servitude, but that would not make him appreciate the joys of prison life.  The Irish parish priest alone can tell what the Irish suffer at home, and how unwillingly they go abroad.  A pamphlet has just been published on this very subject, by the Very Rev. P. Malone, P.P., V.F., of Belmullet, co.  Mayo, and in this he says:  “I have seen the son, standing upon the deck of the emigrant ship, divest himself of his only coat, and place it upon his father’s shoulders, saying, ’Father, take you this; I will soon earn the price of a coat in the land I am going to.’” Such instances, which might be recorded by the hundred, and the amount of money sent to Ireland by emigrants for the support of aged parents, and to pay the passage out of younger members of the family, are the best refutation of the old falsehood that Irishmen are either idle or improvident.



[Illustration:  IRISH HISTORY.]


Celtic Literature—­Antiquity of our Annals—­Moore—­How we should estimate Tradition—­The Materials for Irish History—­List of the Lost Books—­The Cuilmenn—­The Saltair of Tara, &c.—­The Saltair of Cashel—­Important MSS. preserved in Trinity College—­By the Royal Irish Academy—­In Belgium.

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An Illustrated History of Ireland from AD 400 to 1800 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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