All the toads and serpents

shamrock from deirdre cantata
Shamrocks, found in Deirdre, published in Dublin 1897.

Sir James Brooke, of The Absentee, does not relish the prospect of the return of Lady Dashfort and her daughter to these shores:

‘…one worthless woman, especially one worthless Englishwoman of rank, does incalculable mischief in a country like this, which looks up to the sister country for fashion. For my own part, as a warm friend to Ireland, I would rather see all the toads and serpents, and venomous reptiles, that St. Patrick carried off in his bag, come back to this island, than these two DASHERS.”

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day from the Nation, Genre and Gender project team!

st pats snakes
Serpents, sans bag.  From an 1891 guidebook to St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin.

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