The bright Old Man of the Mountain

Sabbath morning.—The sun rose pleasantly—a welcome sight, as my eyes had scarcely seen a cloudless sky in seven months. Taking a few tracts, I went out to ascend the wild mountains, which lay back from the town, and whose heathy sides I was told were sprinkled with smoky cabins. Climbing rocks, crossing hedges and ditches, I at last saw a cabin on the brow of a hill, and entered its humble door. An old man was shaving; wiping his razor, "God save ye kindly, lady; and sure ye must have gone astray, to be so airly out on this wild mountain; ye must be a stranger; and have ye no comrade to be with ye?"

His tall stooping figure, his noble bald forehead, the sprinkling grey locks upon the back and sides of his head, the lustre of his eye, and the smoothness of his placid face, made him an object of deep interest at first sight; but when he told me he had breathed the air of seventy-five winters on these mountains, without a "hap'orth of sickness, or pill from the doctor," and could read my books with a naked eye, I was almost incredulous. "If ye have a Douay Testament, I will try my hand at one, lady; but will not touch any other." Promising to return with one, if I had any, he accompanied me a good distance up the mountain, and making a low bow, which would have done honor to a Parisian, he bade a good morning, adding, "Ye must be in haste, ma'am, if ye would be in time for chapel."

Read "Ireland's Welcome to the Stranger" at your leisure

Ireland's Welcome to the Stranger

Read Ireland's Welcome to the Stranger at your leisure and help support this free Irish library.

This book cannot be recommended highly enough to those interested in Irish social history. The author, Mrs Asenath Nicholson, travelled from her native America to assess the condition of the poor in Ireland during the mid 1840s. Her journey took her through the counties of Dublin, Wicklow, Wexford, Tipperary, Cork, Galway, Mayo, Sligo, Cork, Kerry, as well as parts of King's County (now Offaly) and Queen's County (now Laois).

The text of this new edition has professionally been reset and an index added to the paperback.