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O'leary And Captain Rock

Irish Humour Home




In Tom Moore's Memoirs of Captain Rock, the outlaw gives the following
humorous sketch:--

The appearance of Father Arthur at our little chapel was quite
unexpected. We had heard, indeed, that he was proceeding through distant
parts of the country, but we had no idea that he would pay us a visit.
The mind of man is a strange compound of opposite passion. I had
everything to apprehend from the poor friar's preaching; yet, strange as
it may appear, I was almost willing to have all my bright scenes
overturned, provided I could have the pleasure to see and hear the
celebrated Father O'Leary. He opposed our designs, disapproved of our
motives, and censured our intentions; yet without having ever seen him,
we loved--almost adored him. Fame had wafted his name even to Rockglen;
and how could we but venerate a man who had exalted the character of
Irishmen, vindicated our oppressed country, and obtained from the ranks
of Protestantism, friends for our insulted creed.

Besides, he was peculiarly adapted to our taste. He made the world
laugh at the foibles of our enemies, and put us in good humor with
ourselves. It was not, therefore, without some slight satisfaction that
we were informed from the altar that the good friar meant to address us
on our manifold transgressions. Never did men manifest such eagerness to
receive reproof. At the sound of his name, there was a general rush
towards the altar. The old women, for the first time in their lives,
ceased coughing, and the old men desisted from spitting. The short
people were elevated on their toes, and the tall people suffered their
hats (felt ones) to be crushed as flat as pancakes, sooner then
incommode their neighbors--a degree of politeness seldom practised in
more polished assemblies. All breathed short and thick; and much as we
venerated our good priest, we fancied he was particularly tedious in the
lecture he thought fit to read us on our neglecting to go to confession,
and on our dilatoriness in paying the last Easter dues. At length he
concluded by announcing Father O'Leary.





Next: Lots Drawn To Have Him At Dinner

Previous: His Person And Mode Of Argument



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