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PUBLIC LIBRARY

307050

ASTOR, LENOX AND
TILDEN' FOUNDATIONS
R

[ All rights reserved.]

PRE FACE

OME months ago, Mr Fisher

Unwin placed a MS. History of Ireland in my hands to edit and prepare for the Press. The editing has, to a large extent, resulted in re-writing

and re - arrangement. The book in its present form does not, of course,

retend to the dignity of a history. It is rather a very elementary sketch which may, perhaps, stimulate the reader to take up worthier works on the subject. The plan which has been adopted is to group the facts of each period, so far as possible, around some central figure, for assuredly the pleasantest way to read history is to read it in biography. Pains have been taken not to burden the narrative

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with details, but to deal broadly with the most
important and the most interesting events.
For it was felt that an imperfect sketch,
which might leave on the mind
collection of stirring episodes and striking
characters, would be better than
finished picture crowded with details which
might tax the memory and exhaust the
patience of the youthful student.

If this little book should in any way awaken the interest of students in the men and movements which have made Irish history, and should, at the same time, induce them to go to the fountain head for fuller information, it will have served its purpose.

A map of Ireland has been prepared by a member of the Irish Literary Society, with the object, chiefly, of marking the places mentioned in the narrative. Like the book, it does not pretend to be complete, but only to help the reader in the first steps to knowledge.

R. BARRY O'BRIEN.

September 15, 1896.

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