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A Tour in Ireland (1776-1779) (Dodo Press) Paperback – Dec 1 2008


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Paperback, Dec 1 2008
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 120 pages
  • Publisher: Dodo Press (Dec 1 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1409952282
  • ISBN-13: 978-1409952282
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 0.7 x 22.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 200 g
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Amazon.com: HASH(0xa08c6678) out of 5 stars 1 review
HASH(0x9fab80fc) out of 5 stars The Anglican Protestants' oppression of Irish Catholics was (is) distinctly religious. July 3 2016
By Tom Dolan - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
Don't let the title fool ya. "A Tour in Ireland 1776-1779" is no tour guide. It is a masterpiece. Not because of Arthur Young's lengthy & detailed descriptions of the non-human landscape. But because of his humane writing about the human landscape – in particular, the political, economic, and distinctly religious oppression of Irish Catholics. Why do I say that the Anglican Protestants' oppression of Irish Catholics was (is) distinctly religious? Arthur Young answers that question in his book, here and there, but, most notably, in Part II, section VI, under the sub-heading "Oppression," and in Part II, section VII, on "Religion." The latter portions of Part II of Arthur Young's book are quoted at length, and discussed in detail, in Volume II of "Sketches of the Irish Bar" by Richard Lalor Sheil. Here is Sheil quoting Young: " ' The landlord of an Irish estate inhabited by Roman Catholics is a sort of despot who yields obedience, in whatever concerns the poor, to no law but his own will. ... The language of written law may be that of liberty, but the situation of the poor may speak no language but that of slavery. ' " Here is Sheil summing up: "The law divides the Protestant proprietor from the Catholic tiller of the soil, and generates a feeling of tyrannical domination." But the quote that cuts deepest comes from Arthur Young himself: "All reflecting persons, who consider the value of religious liberty, will * * * respect even those prejudices * * * that are imbibed as sacred rights, even from earliest infancy."

UPDATE: Writing more than two hundred years ago, Arthur Young exposed an evil that is not entirely a thing of the past, a piece of history, long buried, only to be dug up out of an old book that nobody reads these days. True, Arthur Young's “A Tour in Ireland 1776-1779” is an old book. True, in that old book, Arthur Young did write about things as they were back then, in his time, which no longer exists. It is also true, however, that the evil Arthur Young wrote about so long ago – to wit, the distinctly religious oppression of Irish Catholics – persists. Indeed, to this very day, the same old evil, in brand-new clothes, rears its ugly head. I say so, because I know so. And I know so, because, quite recently, I experienced it myself – up close, personal, and live! – when a "born again" neighbor (of the Billy Graham persuasion) aggressively pressured me to substitute his religion for my religion, the Irish Catholic religion, which is also my deceased parents' religion. So, yeah, I perk up my ears, and I listen, riveted with rapt attention, when, from across the ocean, and across the centuries, I hear the bell of religious liberty ringing in the voice of Arthur Young, as he calls upon the oppressor to “respect even those prejudices … that are imbibed as sacred rights, even from earliest infancy.”

CAVEAT EMPTOR: Good as the latter quote is, I cannot find it on the kindle edition. I highly recommend Arthur Young's "A Tour in Ireland." But I cannot, in good conscience, recommend the kindle edition.

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