'An Irish Problem': Bilingual Manoeuvres in the Work of Somerville and Ross
18T16:03:47Z October 2021
In August 1901, Edith Somerville and Violet Martin attended a Petty Sessions court in Carna, Co. Galway, by invitation from the Resident Magistrate, W. MacDermot and, fellow magistrate, local hotelier J. O’Loghlen. According to Martin Ross’s diary for 15 August, ‘Johnny O’Loghlen drove Edith and me, with three other female visitors, over to Carna, for the Petty Sessions there. There was only one case, of the drowning of a sheep, but J. O’Loghlen and W. McDermot worked it for an hour and a half for all it was worth.’ Edith Somerville’s diary entry for that day records going ‘with three other women’, driven in a wagonette, to Carna Petty Sessions: ‘They are held in a sort of converted cowhouse. Only 1 case about a sheep, maliciously drowned. Our host and the R.M. the only magistrates, they stage managed the case to perfection.’ 1 Over the following month, the two cousins worked their recollections of the encounter into an article entitled ‘An Irish Problem’, published, for a fee of twenty pounds, in the conservative journal National Reviewand soon after included in their 1903 essay collection All of the Irish Shore.2 Writing of the collection in a letter to their literary agent James Pinker in 1903, Martin Ross described it as ‘one of the best’ stories included.
Type of Material
Manchester University Press
Status of Item
Pilz, A. and Standlee, W. (eds.). Irish Women's Writings 1878-1922: Advancing the cause of Liberty
This item is made available under a Creative Commons License