O'leary And Captain Rock

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.

O'connell And Secretary Goulburn O'leary And John O'keefe facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail