The Cross and the Shamrock eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 233 pages of information about The Cross and the Shamrock.

All this talk was lost on poor Eugene, who continued chanting his little hymn, or repeating the “Hail Mary” and “Holy Mary,” for his father and mother’s souls.  In a word, after a series of whippings, confinements, and scoldings, after compelling him either to eat flesh on Friday, or fast all day without any other food, Parson Dilman, out of sheer shame, gave him up, and confessed himself vanquished by the Catholic child.  He did not give him up for good, however, but, by way of making more sure of his victim, he sent him out into the country, to undergo the treatment of a more zealous and perfect disciplinarian than himself.  This pious Christian was no other than Shaw Gulvert, who was known to be a prodigy of sanctity, and had a world of zeal in reconciling obstinate heretics, or pagans, (as he called all but his own sect,) to the true standard of old Presbyterianism.  He could boast of having most of the Old Testament by heart, making a prayer or “asking a blessing” of one hour’s duration in the delivery; and by these virtues, and others he knew how to practise, every person who lived in his house, or came within the influence of his zeal, was sure “to get religion in no time.”  ’Tis true, he met some unlucky converts, and one or two very obstinate Papists whom he did not convert at all; but he soon despatched and discharged these latter.  And he was especially mortified at the conduct of one Tipperary man, named Burk, who had the audacity to bring the priest to say mass in a house which the latter rented from him.  The house has ever since been locked up, the pious Christian, Mr. Shaw Gulvert, preferring to let it rot and totter in ruin, rather than run the risk of having a Catholic tenant, who, like Burk, would be wicked enough to allow the priest inside the threshold.

This is the gentleman who is intrusted with the conversion of poor Eugene O’Clery, the Irish emigrant orphan; and he set about the work in right earnest fashion.



During the first two months, Eugene had comparatively but little to fear from the bigotry of his protector at Greenditch; but he was not indebted for this limited peace to the generosity of Mr. Shaw Gulvert.  Indeed, that ignorant and cruel man dared not to execute his designs regarding the little confessor of the cross, while his two hired men, named Devlin, were in his house to enlighten his ignorance and reprimand his audacity.  These two young men, brothers, were hired for a year by Gulvert, under the impression that they were native born; but after the contract between them was signed, and especially when Friday came on, Mr. Gulvert found he was gulled, and ran off to the parson, one Waistcoat, to see what was to be done.  The young men told him not to be alarmed if he thought their presence would endanger his peace of mind, or that any dangerous consequences were to be apprehended from two such formidable soldiers

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The Cross and the Shamrock from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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