"The superior, the very reverend John Conmee S.J. reset his smooth watch in his interior pocket as he came down the presbytery steps. Five to three. Just nice time to walk to Artane. What was that boy's name again? Dignam, yes. Vere dignum et iustum est. Brother Swan was the person to see. Mr Cunningham's letter. Yes. Oblige him, if possible. Good practical catholic: useful at mission time." (U10.1) |
[Image courtesy of the ZJJF]
|"A onelegged sailor, swinging himself onward by lazy jerks of his crutches, growled some notes. He jerked short before the convent of the sisters of charity" (U10.7)|
|The Religious Sisters of Charity (RSC) is a Catholic congregation of nuns dedicated to working with the poor. It was started in Ireland by Mary Aikenhead in 1815. The Upper Gardiner street RCS foundation, that the sailor is passing, was a convent and a school. This PC shows the RSC foundation on Stanhope street, and was written by a Sister in 1904.|
|"and held out a peaked cap for aims towards the very reverend John Conmee S.J. Father Conmee blessed him in the sun for his purse held, he knew, one silver crown." (10.9)|
|"Father Conmee crossed to Mountjoy square. He thought, but not for long, of soldiers and sailors, whose legs had been shot off by cannonballs," (U10.12)|
"ending their days in some pauper ward," (U10.13)|
This PC shows the reading room in the Royal Hospital (Kilmainham, Dublin), a home for retired soldiers. Built in 1684 by Sir William Robinson, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland to King Charles II, it continued in that use for over 250 years.
"and of cardinal Wolsey's words: If I had served my God as I have served my king He would not have abandoned me in my old days." (U15.14)|
From the CE 1912: Cardinal Wolsey (1471 - 1530) was educated at Oxford, took his degree at 15, and was ordained at 17. He started as a chaplain to the Archbishop of Canterbury. Noticed for a remarkable talent for administration, he entered the diplomatic service of Henry VII, then Henry VIII. By 1512 he was exercising marked influence in political affairs. His career rapidly avanced, as he became Bishop of Tournay, Bishop of Lincon, Archbishop of York, cardinal, Lord Chancellor of England (1515), and was considered for papacy. He had thus attainted at the early age of 43 the highest dignities, spiritual and temporal, that a subject could hope for. However Wolsey gradually fell in disfavour, owing to his foreign policy and rivalry with Anne Boleyn, and was stripped of many of his titles. He was in residence at Cawood near York, embittered and in poor health, when commissioners from the king came to arrest him (1529) on a charge of high treason. Slowly and as an invalid he travelled towards London, knowing well what to expect. "Master Kingston, I see the matter against me now it is framed; but if I had served God as diligently as I have done the king He would not have given me over in my gray hairs." The end came at Leicester Abbey where on arrival he told the abbot, "I am come to leave my bones among you." He died unregretted by any save his immediate attendants.
|Cardinal Wolsey was not held in the same reverence by everyone. Wolsey Never-Shrink Underwear was a popular brand, here advertised in the Illustrated London News (1899).|
"Father Conmee was wonderfully well indeed. He would go to Buxton probably for the waters." (U10.19)|
Buxton (Derbyshire, England) was in 1904 a fashionable Spa and tourist resort. Known as 'Aquae Arnemetiae' in Roman times, the town grew around natural thermal springs. By the 16c., visitors (including Mary Queen of Scots) came for the waters. In the 18c., Buxton grew rapidly as the Crescent was built. In Victorian times, its population trebled with the coming of the railways; the Pavilion Gardens, new baths, pump rooms, hotels and churches were added. At the turn of the 20c., electricity and telephones arrived. In 1901, a new theatre opened, and in 1903, a magnificent Opera House. This PC shows the Buxton Baths; notice several 'Bath chairs' lined up, and a Jesuit priest!
|The main tourist accomodation in Buxton was the Crescent. Built in the 1780s by the 5th Duke of Devonshire, to the design of John Carr, it copied (and hoped to rival) the famous Crescent in Bath; it gave great impetus to the city. The Crescent was conceived as two purpose-built hotels separated by six lodging houses. This PC shows the Crescent and some of the amenities (Lounge, Drawing Room, Ball Room) that Father Conmee may have enjoyed. Buxton nowadays still calls itself a Spa town even though it no longer offers hydrotherapy.|
"And her boys, were they getting on well at Belvedere? Was that so? Father Conmee was very glad indeed to hear that." (U10.21)|
Belvedere College SJ is a private Jesuit school for boys located on Great Denmark street where it meets N. Great George street. It was founded in 1832. George Augustus Rochfort (1738 - 1814), who became the Second Earl of Belvedere in 1774, built Belvedere House (seen in the background on this PC), a dominant building on the school's campus, and a fine example of Georgian architecture in Ireland.
|" And Mr Sheehy himself? Still in London. The house was still sitting, to be sure it was. Beautiful weather it was, delightful indeed." (U10.22)|
"Yes, it was very probable that Father Bernard Vaughan would come again to preach. O, yes: a very great success. A wonderful man really." (U10.23)|
Father Bernard Vaughan S.J. (1847 - 1922) was an eloquent and theatrical speaker. His contemporary Father Feeney S.J. wrote: "Father Vaughan was never a lecturer at the lectern, nor a pulpit pedagogue. He was first, last, and always, a preacher. Those who could not match him at excellence in this endeavored to depreciate him." And further: "Often, when speaking in public, he tried to offer England a sociological Jesus, instead of the Jesus Who died to save our souls. He made Our Lord the ardent supporter, almost contributor, to all sorts of uplift enterprises, for better food, better living quarters, better hospital care. As a Catholic in the pulpit, Father Vaughan was edifying."
"Father Conmee was very glad to see the wife of Mr David Sheehy M.P. looking so well and he begged to be remembered to Mr David Sheehy M.P. Yes, he would certainly call. |
- Good afternoon, Mrs Sheehy." (U10.26)
|"Father Conmee doffed his silk hat and smiled, as he took leave, at the jet beads of her mantilla inkshining in the sun. And smiled yet again, in going. He had cleaned his teeth, he knew, with arecanut paste." (U10.30)|