Irish Impressions is today’s review from Darren Redmond. Originally written by G. K. Chesterton, this audio book is freely available to the public.
As we get ready for St Patrick’s Day, I will continue during the month of March to read and review books that deal with Ireland or with the Irish. The book that I will be reviewing ‘Irish Impressions’ published in 1919. It was written by poet, author, theologian, scholar and lecturer G. K. Chesterton.
I have read literally dozens of books on this subject matter, but I have never been so enthralled in the ability for a writer to paint a picture, with the paint of words, to create a understanding rich in fact, musings, commentary, and lasting imagery on a story about a moment in Ireland.
We have all heard the adage, ‘sometimes it is hard to see the forest from the trees’ and you see in this book that this may be true. On a trip to recruit Irishmen to fight alongside the English in World War 1, Chesterton discovers an Ireland that one always knew was there but feels new just the same.
SURPRISINGLY DETAILED READING
This book is not without points that may surprise many. For this Englishman, it goes into great detail in giving reasons why Ireland is truly its own country and that many who see themselves as Celts first fail to realize the difference:
- How Ireland can be its own country but yet fight side-by-side against Germany in World War 1
- Rather be made fun of by some in England and murdered by others in Germany
- Goes into great depth describing the pros used in the verbal vernacular of the people of Ireland
He talks of how many of the Orange would call themselves good Protestants, while many of the Greenwood would call themselves bad Catholics.
Y. B. Yeats and G. K. Chesterton both took the stage together during Chesterton’s trip to Ireland. I would have loved to have been in the audience for that. As I have referenced previously, Chesterton was a big influence on the later writings of C. S. Lewis.
If you want to learn much about Ireland in the early 1900’s I cannot suggest a better book than this one.
This is one of those books that you feel sad when it is over because you want to keep discovering more.
This book is free to read in the public domain.
Happy Saint Patrick’s Day.
Written By: Darren Redmond