Page 28. " God's gift, Original Sin "

Original Sin is, according to a doctrine proposed by Christian theology, humanity's state of sin resulting from the Fall of Man (the transition of the first humans from a state of innocent obedience to God, to a state of guilty disobedience following their decision to eat the forbidden fruit).

Catholic teaching regards Original Sin as the general condition of sinfulness into which humans are born, rather than actual sins that a person commits.

 

Page 33. " with her head in Knocknagow "
Charles J Kickham
Public DomainCharles J Kickham

Knocknagow by Charles Kickham was published in 1879 and became one of the most popular novels in Ireland. Its influence derived from its political importance, rather than its literary merits. It attacks the landlord system in Ireland and, indirectly, the English rule which supported the system.

For many years Knocknagow, or The Homes of Tipperary, was the book (along with a prayerbook) most likely to be found in every Irish home. Yeats described it as "The most honest of Irish novels" and Con Houlihan as "The greatest Irish novel".

 

Page 50. " A heart went into Scribblestown Stream, a torso into the Little Dargle... Naniken River and the Creosote Stream "

The Scribblestown Stream is a tributary of the Tolka, that runs through Dublin between Abbotstown and Dunsink. The Little Dargle is a tributary of the River Dodder which runs through Dublin. The Naniken River is a minor river on the north side of Dublin. The Creosote Stream is one of the right bank tributaries of the Liffey.

Page 50. " The Minstrel Boy "

("The Minstrel Boy" performed by John McCormack)

"The Minstrel Boy" by Thomas Moore is a patriotic song set to the melody of the Moreen, an old Irish air. Moore is widely thought to have written the song in remembrance of friends killed during the Irish Rebellion of 1798:

The Minstrel Boy to the war is gone

In the ranks of death you will find him;

His father's sword he hath girded on,

And his wild harp slung behind him;

"Land of Song!" said the warrior bard,

"Tho' all the world betrays thee,

One sword, at least, thy rights shall guard,

One faithful harp shall praise thee!

 

"The Minstrel fell! But the foeman's chain

Could not bring that proud soul under;

The harp he lov'd ne'er spoke again,

For he tore its chords asunder;

And said "No chains shall sully thee,

Thou soul of love and brav'ry!

Thy songs were made for the pure and free,

They shall never sound in slavery!"