Colm Tóibín, 18 November 1993
Show More Paddy and Mr Punch: Connections in Irish and English History by R.F. Foster.
Allen Lane, 305 pp., £22.50, October 1993, 0 7139 9095 3Show More
“... In 1969, two years after my father died, my mother, my sisters and I went to Wexford for the launch of a new history of the 1798 Rising, The Year of Liberty by Thomas Pakenham. The Rising was important for us: from our housing estate we could see Vinegar Hill where ‘our side’, the rebels, had made their last stand. From early childhood I knew certain things (I hesitate to say ‘facts’) about the Rising: how the English had muskets whereas we just had pikes, how the English poured boiling tar on the scalps of the Irish and then, when the tar had dried, peeled it off ...”