BECKER, Bernard H. Disturbed Ireland. Being the letters written during the Winter of 1880-81
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With route maps. London: Macmillan and Co., 1881. pp. ix, , 338, [2 (advertisement for works published by Macmillan)]. Green cloth, title in gilt on spine. Mild foxing to endpapers. A very good copy. Scarce. With the land war at its height, Bernard Becker, a journalist with the ‘Daily News’ was sent to Ireland
to report on the distressed conditions of the disturbed districts. Becker claimed to be an “intelligent foreigner” with no Irish connections, suitable for the purpose. He confined his travels to the hot-spots of the agrarian troubles - Counties Kerry, Clare, Galway and Mayo. The letters are claimed to be unbiased descriptive accounts of “a strange phase in national life.” But he was critical of tenants and their demands, sympathetic to landlords and lodged with Richard Stacpoole, one of the largest and most unyielding landlords in County Clare. At Lough Mask he praises the courage of Captain Boycott who is “garrisoned at home and escorted abroad.” When published ‘Disturbed Ireland’ aroused great interest and led to debates on the ‘Irish Question’ in the House of Commons.
The contents includes: At Lough Mask; An Agrarian Difficulty; Land Meetings; Miss Gardiner and Her Tenants; From Mayo to Connemara; The Relief for Mr. Boycott; Mr. Richard Stacpoole; On the Fergus; Pallas and the Palladians; Gombeen; In Kerry; The “Boycotting” of Mr. Bence Jones; Christmas in County Clare, etc.
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