The Irish Love of Dancing and the Approach to Cork

The mirthful dances of Ireland are the jig, reel, hornpipe, country-dance, and cotillon. Of these the jig is the dance peculiar to the country. The music of the jig, and the steps used in dancing to it, being totally different from every other known movement, entitle it to be distinguished as the national Irish dance.

The approach to Cork from Ballincollig is through a fertile and highly improved country, and the entrance to the city by the western outlet is exceedingly beautiful, and worthy of the second city of the kingdom. About a mile from the town the view is very imposing; the most striking objects that present themselves to the traveller's notice are the county jail and house of correction. The front of the latter—the part of the building seen from the road—is adorned with a portico of Doric columns, which stands out in beautiful relief: the whole is characterised by a noble simplicity of design, and a pleasing unity of its parts. The spacious, well-formed road, the venerable trees of the Mardyke Walk, the mansions of the gentry exhibiting taste and comfort united in a remarkable degree, and the richly cultivated fields which stretch along the banks of the river, give to this side of the city a character of wealth and grandeur (unfortunately but rarely to be seen in the suburbs of an Irish town) which prepossess one in favour of the place before he enters it.

END OF CHAPTER III.