"and bring it to town and hamlet to make fires in the houses of poor people." (U10.105)
"On Newcomen bridge the very reverend John Conmee S.J. of saint Francis Xavier's church, upper Gardiner street, stepped onto an outward bound tram.
Off an inward bound tram stepped the reverend Nicholas Dudley C.C. of saint Agatha's church, north William street, onto Newcomen bridge.
At Newcomen bridge Father Conmee stepped into an outward bound tram for he disliked to traverse on foot the dingy way past Mud Island." (U10.107)
"the very reverend John Conmee S.J. of saint Francis Xavier's church, upper Gardiner street," (U10.107)
Saint Francis Xavier Church, popularly known as Gardiner Street Church, is a Roman Catholic church on Upper Gardiner street. It is run by the Jesuits. The first stone was laid in 1829, the year of the Catholic Relief Act, and the church opened in 1832.
"Father Conmee sat in a corner of the tramcar, a blue ticket tucked with care in the eye of one plump kid glove, while four shillings, a sixpence and five pennies chuted from his other plump glovepalm into his purse." (U10.115)
The color of a ticket reflects its price, hence the distance one could travel with it. Father Conmee bought a blue ticket. Before 1918, blue was a penny ticket.
"Passing the ivy church he reflected that the ticket inspector usually made his visit when one had carelessly thrown away the ticket. The solemnity of the occupants of the car seemed to Father Conmee excessive for a journey so short and cheap. Father Conmee liked cheerful decorum." (U10.118)
We read at the bottom of this DUTC ticket: 'To be retained till collected.'
"It was a peaceful day. The gentleman with the glasses opposite Father Conmee had finished explaining and looked down. His wife, Father Conmee supposed.
A tiny yawn opened the mouth of the wife of the gentleman with the glasses. She raised her small gloved fist, yawned ever so gently, tiptapping her small gloved fist on her opening mouth and smiled tinily, sweetly.
Father Conmee perceived her perfume in the car. He perceived also that the awkward man at the other side of her was sitting on the edge of the seat." (U10.122)
"Father Conmee at the altarrails placed the host with difficulty in the mouth of the awkward old man who had the shaky head." (U10.131)
"At Annesley bridge the tram halted and, when it was about to go, an old woman rose suddenly from her place to alight. The conductor pulled the bellstrap to stay the car for her. She passed out with her basket and a marketnet: and Father Conmee saw the conductor help her and net and basket down: and Father Conmee thought that, as she had nearly passed the end of the penny fare, she was one of those good souls who had always to be told twice bless you, my child, that they have been absolved, pray for me. But they had so many worries in life, so many cares, poor creatures." (U10.133)
"From the hoardings Mr Eugene Stratton grinned with thick niggerlips at Father Conmee." (U10.141)
"Father Conmee thought of the souls of black and brown and yellow men and of his sermon on saint Peter Claver S.J. and the African mission and of the propagation of the faith and of the millions of black and brown and yellow souls that had not received the baptism of water when their last hour came like a thief in the night." (U10.143)
"That book by the Belgian jesuit, Le Nombre des Élus, seemed to Father Conmee a reasonable plea. Those were millions of human souls created by God in His Own likeness to whom the faith had not (D.V.) been brought. But they were God's souls, created by God. It seemed to Father Conmee a pity that they should all be lost, a waste, if one might say." (U10.147)
[Image courtesy of the ZJJF]
"At the Howth road stop Father Conmee alighted, was saluted by the conductor and saluted in his turn." (U10.153)
"The Malahide road was quiet. It pleased Father Conmee, road and name." (U10.155)
Malahide is the name of a village 9 miles north of Dublin, and a castle adjoining. The oldest parts of the castle date back to the 12c. It was home to the Talbot family since 1185. A poignant story relates that, on the morning of the Battle of the Boyne in 1690, 14 members of the family breakfasted together, and none of them returned. In the 1920s, the private papers of James Boswell were discovered in the castle. In 1973, the 7th Baron Talbot died, and his sister Rose sold the castle to the Irish State (1975).
"The joybells were ringing in gay Malahide. Lord Talbot de Malahide, immediate hereditary lord admiral of Malahide and the seas adjoining. Then came the call to arms and she was maid, wife and widow in one day." (U10.156)
As the legend of the above PC explains: "Beside the Castle is the ruined Abbey of Malahide, and within its precinct is the tomb of Maud, wife of Sir Richard Talbot, who died about 1440. Maud was the daughter of the Baron of Killeen and was married in the Abbey to the son of Lord Galtrim. The ceremony had just been completed when her husband and her father were summoned to battle, and her warrior was brought home dead to her that evening. She was thus maid, wife and widow in one day. The story forms the theme of Gerald Griffin's ballad 'The Bridal of Malahide.' Sir Richard became Maud's second husband, and she survived him, and married the third time."
Gerald Griffin's ballad 'The bridal of Malahide' starts:
"The joy-bells are ringing in gay Malahide"
and includes the lines:
"She sinks on the meadow in one morning-tide,
A wife and a widow, a maid and a bride!"
"Those were old worldish days, loyal times in joyous townlands, old times in the barony.
Father Conmee, walking, thought of his little book Old Times in the Barony and of the book that might be written about jesuit houses and of Mary Rochfort, daughter of lord Molesworth, first countess of Belvedere." (U10.159)
The booklet 'Old Days in the Barony' by V. Rev. J.S. Conmee S.J. indeed exists. (Image courtesy of Harald Beck)