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a party fired into a house. The wife was giving her two
little children supper; a bullet lodged in her leg.

I think that the Constabulary are beginning to feel the
general disorganisation, wondering if something is really going
to happen, and they "don't see" things.

There is an awful load of responsibility on anybody who,
for private purposes, prevents things being settled.

Wait till the labourers learn their power and go in for the
plunder. YOUR B.

I was sitting with Taming to-day when the telegram arrived
announcing that the Boys were out last night near Rathkeale,
County Limerick, half killing a farmer who had paid rent.

A letter from Chamberlain, dated December 17th,
and addressed to "Mr. W. H. Duignan," is extremely
interesting. Having recapitulated what his correspon-
dent had told him of the latter's experiences in Ireland,
and of the persistence of Nationalist sentiment, Cham-
berlain went on to analyse the meaning of the word
Nationalist, and to lead up step by step to his proposal
of a National Board for Ireland to sit at Dublin, which
was afterwards shelved by Gladstone in favour of an
Irish Parliament. It is plain from this letter that Cham-
berlain as a Radical was not a Home Ruler in the wid-
est sense, and even then refused to recognise Ireland as
a separate people.


Wednesday, 1 A. M.

MY DICK, I have just written to Mr. Parnell to say that
I shall be here at 12 o'clock, and shall wait for him. I have

*Captain O'Shea had some property at Derryneveigh farms and



a communication of the most urgent and important character
from C.* The latter wanted me at twelve to-morrow, but it
became too pressing, and he asked me to come to his room
at twelve to-night instead. It is too long to write, but telly,
and I can come to A. M. at any time during the afternoon
and tell you all about it. YOUR B.

Much more important than Rein.

Mr. Parnell did not think it well to keep this appoint-
ment, as he distrusted proposals coming from this quar-
ter as to Irish affairs.

January 9, 1885.

MY DICK, Colonel Sandeman did not come until the 7.45
train. He returns to Hayling on Monday. I propose to go
with him until Wednesday.

On Thursday I have the appointment with Chamberlain.
But you see that Parnell is inveighing against the Land Courts
and promising the dupes "Liberty" in the immediate future,
so he appears to have altogether shifted from common-sense

This is the Reign of Rant again, and what is one to think
of a fellow who acts thus in the midst of negotiation?

Tell Norah I shall come down early to-morrow to spend
her birthday with you all. YOUR B.

Nothing from Madrid.

MY DICK, Just back from Heneage. Mr. Parnell has not

It is impossible to convey what C. told me to-day by letter,
and it is important you should know it directly. Sebag sends
a postcard (to save fd.), which I enclose.


I shall come down to Pope Street by the train reaching
that station at 12.22. Please send the young ladies to meet
me. YOUE B.

The following note from Parnell explains why the
appointment was not kept:


MY DEAR O 'SHEA, I have been in bed for the last week
with a bad cold, and have only been able to get out to-day
for the first time.

Will call back to see if you have returned about six or a
quarter to six. Yours truly, CHAS. S. PARNELL.


January 19, 1885.

MY DICK, I have been feeling wretched all day, but I
had to write the enclosed twice. I telegraphed to Mr. Par-
nell to Avondale and Morrison's Hotel last night to telegraph
back where to post a letter to him this evening, but he hasn't,
so I have sent it to Morrison's Hotel on chance.

Please post the enclosed by the 10 o'clock post to Chamber-
lain. Seal with wax.

I wonder whether you are coming to-morrow.

Nothing from Madrid, but I doubt whether we could ex-
pect anything. YOUR BOYSIE.


Monday night, 1885.

MY DICK, I think I must ask you to come up to-morrow.
Broadbent thinks me very ill. As far as I can judge, he
thinks my heart affected.

He has ordered an old-fashioned mustard poultice imme-
diately to my foot. I suppose to try to get the gout thoroughly
into it.

He says I am in a very low state.



If you can come put on the lightest clothes you have got
and drive up. If you can bring the little girls I should be
very glad.

I feel very ill. I went to the House this afternoon. Lord
R. Churchill has laid down as one of his conditions to Lord
Salisbury that Sir S. N. should not be Leader of the House
of Commons, but Hicks-Beach.

He divided the House against an arrangement made at
Lord S.'s suggestion and assented to by Sir S. Northcote. I
don't think Lord S. will be able to form an administration.

Come if you can. Care killed the cat and may kill me
this time.

Monday night.

MY DICK, I had an hour with Card. Manning at his
house this evening. He was very anxious to see me.

To-night he writes to Rome that I informed him that only
one member of the Cabinet, Lord Granville, opposes the nomi-
nation of Dr. Walsh as Archbishop of Dublin, while several
are active supporters of it and the rest.

He talked also a good deal about the self-government ques-
tion, and he was most charming, came downstairs, and ac-
companied me to the door. Yours, W.


March 2, 1885.

Telegraph how are. If you see Gladstone to-day tell him
how Grosvenor annoyed me about post offices. Here after

MY DICK, I had better come and talk the thing over
early to-morrow. I shall telly by what train I shall come to
Pope Street.

To-day C.* promised me the Chief Secretaryship on the
formation of the Government after the election.



He would, while holding his own office (probably Secretary
of State for the Home Department), help me in the matter.

This is an enormous thing, giving you and the Chicks a
very great position.

Have you seen the extract from United Ireland* in the
evening papers? Of course, it will strike C. and D.f as a
piece of bad faith; and no doubt it is. Yours, O'S.


March 17, 1885.

MY DICK, Montagu came here at 11 o'clock, and I intro-
duced him to Chamberlain.

Previously C. told me that much had occurred since yester-
day, and that if an arrangement could be made to get the
Redistribution Bill and the Crimes Bill quickly into law the
Government, who are not anxious to bring the Session to an
end too quickly, might bring in Local Government Bills,
including one for Ireland, on the basis of the proposals which
I handed C. in January.

I have just seen P.,| but he appears to funk making a
treaty. It is too bad, as it is a great chance, especially as it
would probably allow of my being Chief Secretary in the
next Parliament. He says he will think over it, but he is
unable, or unwilling, to face difficulties.

Montagu told me not to write anything, but to consult a
solicitor; so I shall go to Ashurst Morris and Co. to-morrow.
In the meanwhile he will see Sebag and prevent anything
being done to-morrow. YOUR B.

C. has just asked me to postpone going for a day so as to
let him know "P.'sJ mind." He hasn't much, but I tellied
to-night that I should be in Madrid by Friday.

April 2, 1885.

MY DICK, It was very stupid of the Direct Spanish to
*Parnell's paper. fChamberlain and Dilke. JParaell.



send the telly to Albert Mansions. I am very sorry to hear
that your chest is still troubling you, and I am afraid that as
long as you have to cross the park in bad weather you cannot
be safe. Anything is better than making yourself ill. Aunt
is certainly very unreasonable.

I have been expecting a telegram from Bailey Hawkins
all the morning to say that the arrangements are completed
for the 200,000 deposits. It is very tiresome work and diffi-
cult, too, to keep the persons interested here quiet.

It was a lovely morning. I went to San Isidro to the Mass
of the Knights of Malta. They looked very grand in their
uniforms, some in white, others in black cloak according to
their section of the order. Great red crosses embroidered on
the white cloaks, white crosses on the black. There were
fourteen of them. The church was hung with banners of the
Order and the names of Ascalon and other great battles of
the Crusades. The music very fine. There has been a very
heavy shower since.

I see by the morning papers that Gayarre sang in the
cathedral at Seville yesterday, and that it was difficult to
restrain the faithful from applauding him.

If Aunt accuses me of extravagance you can truthfully
tell her that my sister's illness was an immense expense to
me. This hotel is simply ruinous, and I never have anything
but Is. 6d. wine. I must have a sitting-room to transact
business. YOUR B.

April 10, 1885.

MY DICK, After an immense amount of trouble and
negotiation the Prime Minister* agreed to all that the Lon-
don people required, even what I told you was unreasonable.
This was the night before last. But the Minister of the
Colonies objects, and there is a crisis in the Ministry. Cano-
vas wishes to get rid of him; the question is whether Canovas,

*Of Spain.


whose power has been greatly weakened, will have the cour-
age to go to the King with the resignation of the Minister
of the Colonies, or whether he will dread the King's possible
answer: "You may as well all resign and have done with it."
Martos seems to fear that Canovas will not have the pluck.
Well, perhaps it does not matter much, because when I was
at the Ministry yesterday the telegram announcing the at-
tack of the Russians on Pendjeh arrived and was shown me.
I expect to hear important news to-night, and I do not stop
working on account of the rumours of war. I have no doubt
all would be right with regard to the caution money.

I am sure you did a dangerous thing in taking such a drive
to fetch Bader. You see, he was sure not to come after all.
From his letter I should think your lung quite as dangerous
as Aunt's cold.

I see by the Standard of Wednesday, just come, that Mr.
Whiteside is dead I have sent a telegram to Miss White-

You see I have done everything mortal could do about
the Cuban business, and it will be hard if after so much suc-
cess one's efforts should be thrown away. Monpribat has
just come up from Seville. It was chokeful for Holy Week,
but the weather very bad. General Armas is very suspicious
of Martos, but he was always a conspirator.

I think I shall telly to-morrow and get away, but I greatly
fear Bank and great bother in London. YOUR B.


Thursday night.

MY DICK, There is to be a meeting of Cabinet Ministers
at Spencer's house to-morrow at 11.

C. and D.* think it certain that the Government will go

If Lord S. were alone he would perhaps give way, being
really a weak creature, but, Lord Hartington being with him,
*Chamberlain and Dilke.


they think he is sure to stand fast. These will take Lord
Selborne and Lord Carlingford.

Tf the Whigs win, C. and D. would resign, and Shaw-Lefevre
and Trevelyan would go.

Just called again to C.'s* room. YOUR B.


May 1, 1885.

MY DICK, I have been expecting to hear all day from
you. It appears that Gladstone is very strongly in favour
of our solution, and to C.'s* surprise Hartington did not re-
ject the proposal offhand as was expected. The final deter-
mination was to take two or three days for reflection.

I wish Lord Spencer would go out. I suppose I told you
that the Cardinal has power to assure Parnell and the Gov-
ernment of the full support of the Catholic Church in case
of their taking up the Co. and Central Board Government

I am holding out against the bank, but only by the skin
of my teeth, and it cannot continue many hours. YOUR B.

I hope if you are coming up to-morrow you will lunch at
Albert Mansions or if not send me the chicks, and we would
wait; that is if you had not been to see Mr. G.f to-day, as I
have no word. I have nothing to do to-morrow, or I could
come down for the day? Breakfast with C. Sunday morning.

May 4, 1885.

MY DICK, I have just returned from Dilke, who tells me
that peace is certain, on the exact terms stated in the Daily
News of Saturday.

I find a telegram from Ashurst Morris and Co., asking me
to go to see them, so I have telegraphed in Hall's name that
he has orders to open telegrams this morning and telegraph;
but is sure I cannot be back in town until late. This is to
gain another day.

"Chamberlain. fGladstone.



It is impossible to go on. The Cuban business must take time.
The reason I am anxious about the Local Self-Government
Scheme is that if Chamberlain has power, which I think he will
in the next Parliament, he will offer me the Chief Secretaryship,
or the equivalent position if the name is abolished, if the boys
will let me have it. Gladstone ought not to know this.

Please let me know by the first post whether I am to take
tickets for the conjurer for Wednesday. To-morrow I shall
be all day on the Shannon Navigation Select Committee.


4.30 P. M., Friday, May 8, 1885.

MY DICK, After questions I am going to bed. I am
feeling very ill and worried.

As for to-morrow, I can do anything you like. I shall
have to call on C.* about eleven, as usual, but that will not
take more than a quarter of an hour. He generally sees me
twice a day now. The same on Sunday, unless he goes to
Birmingham, which he tells me is unlikely this week; otherwise
I could have come both days to Eltham, if more convenient

Mr. Parnell is very unsatisfactory. He told me last night,
with a sort of wave of chivalry, that I might convey to Cham-
berlain that he didn't hold them to the bargain; that they
were free to compromise with their comrades if they chose.
He does not much care for anything except the vague and
wild politics which have brought him so much money.

I do not see how the Ministry can sustain the shock of
next week. G.f will be glad, I fancy, of the chance of pri-
vate life. It will be interesting to see what he will do for
us, or offer. YOUR B.


May 30, 1885. Friday night.

MY DICK, Dilke on arrival sent for me. Nothing ar-
"Chamberlain. fGladstone.



rived at. Hartington was quite well when he arrived, but
put out owing to the conversation at dinner. Walker was
at table, and whenever Lord H.* appealed to him with re-
gard to the speech to be delivered in the North for support
against Dilke's arguments Walker would advise "I think
you'd better say nothing at all about that." So Lord H.
was so ill the next morning that he could not go to Ulster.

Dilke, Lyulph Stanley, and the Bishop of Bedford dined
at Grays, and there met Dr. Walsh. Lord Spencer was much
annoyed by Stanley and the Bishop expressing themselves
as pleased with Dr. Walsh as Dilke did. Altogether he seems
to lead Lord Spencer a life. YOUR B.


June 2, 1885.

MY DICK, I have been waiting all day here, and am
just giving you up. I am to dine at the Sandemans, and to
go to Epsom with Colonel S., who entertains me in the tent
of his corps to-morrow.

I was particularly anxious to see you; indeed, I do not
know what to do without seeing you, and it is impossible to
write. YOUR B.

Saturday, 2.15 p. M.

MY DICK, If to-morrow I hope you will telly early so as
to prepare the feast.

I have got a list shoe, but I find I can as yet play no tricks,
so I have reverted to cotton wool.

I am greatly disgusted with Gladstone, Grosvenor and
Co. You will see he has thoroughly done you as near as may
be no lease, no anything; the most trivial, dishonest hound,
and in such a fix. No wonder he is ill!

Chamberlain wants me on the 15th, as I am not able to
go for a chat to-day. He sent to know.



I see by the papers Mr. P.* has arranged to go to Mill-
town on the 23rd or 24th or something.

I have had a very bad attack this time. I shall be glad of
the books. I send back Lord M. YOUR BOYSIE.

Chamberlain's letter to Willie, dated June 10th, was
an interesting speculation on what would be the next
Government and what would happen to coercion. The
possibilities seemed to be: A Conservative Government
(1) with Coercion; (2) with Randolph Churchill, a Lib-
eral Government; (3) with Coercion; (4) with Chamber-
lain and Dilke; and the letter is good evidence of Cham-
berlain's determination to have nothing to do with a
Coercion Act.

On June 26, 1885, Chamberlain sent Willie the fol-
lowing extract from United Ireland:


The recent speeches of Mr. Chamberlain surpass in their
cynical hypocrisy anything we have seen from even British
statesmen. Base as we consider the conduct of Radical Min-
isters to have been in abetting the horrors which the Glad-
stone Government have carried out in Ireland, we never could
have supposed they would have stooped to the arts which
they are now attempting to practise in order to curry favour
once more with the Irish people. We plainly tell Messrs.
Chamberlain and Dilke that if they are wise they will keep
out of Ireland altogether. We do not want them here. Let
them stop at home and look after their own affairs. In
plain English, this proposed tour of theirs is simply adding
insult to injury. We regard it as a mere electoral manoeuvre.
The truth is, so long as the House of Lords exists none but
a Tory Government can pass an effective Home Rule scheme.



Chamberlain footed this quotation by invoking his
"Dear O'Shea" and with a number of exclamation marks.




MY DICK, We are of opinion that the formula holds
good, "No rational beings who have had dealings with Mr.
Parnell would believe him on oath."

We know that he has recently said that he is under no
obligation or promise to me! ! ! ! !

The marks are of admiration, not of surprise. He has not
told the lie to my face, but the man who, after promising to
assist in every way Mr. Chamberlain's journey to Ireland,
can let his paper the same week abuse him like a pickpocket,
is not to be respected by Mr. C., and I have already told
the scoundrel what I think of him.

The worst of it is that one looks such a fool, getting Mr.
C. to write such a letter as that of Saturday to no purpose.

There was no knowledge of the result of to-night's up to
the hour of starting for the House.

I am worried, if not out of my wits, out of my hair. The
little left came out this morning after a sleepless night, and
I am balder than a coot is. Such fun.

I wonder whether I shall die soon, or if the day will come.
Would I had understood it had come when I was asked to
go to Kilmainham. YOUR B.




I have seen to-day a great number of M. P.'s of various
parties, King Harman, Kerr, Orangemen, Sir W. Barttelot,
Gregory and many other English Tories, Sir Lyon Playfair,
and a score of English and Scotch Tories. One and all spoke
in astonishment and disgust of Parnell's conduct towards me.



None of them, of course, knew the absolute baseness of it.

But to all I replied: "Poor devil, he is obliged to allow
himself to be kicked to the right or the left and look pleasant.
But he has the consolation of having been well paid for the
pain 40,000, the tribute of the priests and people of Ire-

The people of Ireland, hearing of the mortgages on
ParnelPs estates in Ireland, started a subscription to pay
these off. The subscription list was headed by the Arch-
bishop of Cashel, I believe, and, in all, the priests and
people of Ireland subscribed and collected 40,000, thus
enabling Parnell to clear the estate from all debt.

June 23, 1885.

Ambassador has received telegram from Spanish Prime
Minister saying I had better come, so if affairs arranged to-
day shall leave Saturday.


December 22, 1885.

MY DICK, My mother did not leave until eight. I took
her home. She was in dreadful spirits, and I am very anxious
about her. She wishes to leave the hotel, but does not know
where she would like to go.

I came back about half-past eight, and shortly afterwards
a Fenian chief called. His friends wanted to see me, so I
went with him, and was introduced to some of the principal
"men." They thoroughly understood that my political views
and theirs are "as the poles apart," but they say they will
stick to me through thick and thin. I fancy that their admira-
tion for me may be somewhat influenced by objection to
certain members.

I have ascertained that Brady, Secretary to the National


League, which has offices at Palace Chambers, Westminster,
is to go to Gal way on Wednesday. This looks like business.
I believe he is at the best with T. P. O'Connor. The real
boys say that the latter has taken a house in Grosvenor
Street, and that he will take in Irish members as lodgers!


The real boys want Galway "fought," but there have been
many outrages in the neighbourhood, and it would be difficult
to identify oneself with the invasion.

Enclosed from "Fenian Chief"


December 23.

I saw the Colonel yesterday, and gave him the copy to
send to Fitzgerald.

I saw I. Malone to-day, and showed him the original docu-

He travelled with P. N. F. about a week ago, and had a
conversation with him upon the subject. P. N. F. is willing
to do all he can, but wishes to have the movement commence
here in Clare. Come to Limerick, giving timely notice, so that
all may be prepared.

Bryan Clune will meet you in Limerick, where everything
can be arranged.

All I can say is that if Bryan Clune stands for Galway it
will be pretty hard to beat him, and if at the last moment he
yields to the request of his Clare friends and retires in favour
of any person, that person will be rather safe.

When the friends were in trouble you gave them a help-
ing hand, and they don't forget it. We stand to the man
that stood to a friend and a friend's friend. God save
Ireland !

The following letter from Parnell to me at this time
gives his view of the trend of affairs :




January 15, 1886.

MY OWN LITTLE WIFIE, I was unable to go to Dublin,
and so did not hear any news from McG. about the other
election matter. However, Blake, whom I saw at Kingstown,
and who had seen C.* the other day, volunteered me the
information that he was plotting to do all the mischief he
could to members of the Party. Subsequently he told me
that C. intended some of it for me, and later on he asked me
whether I had ever spoken to a lady in London about C. and
turning him out, and that C. had told him he had evidence
that I had, and this was why I would not agree to his candi-
dature. The "lady in London" is, of course, Mrs. O'Shea,
and this is how her name is going to be introduced into the
matter if the Court permits it.

Of course the point he will make is that I did not oppose
him on account of his bad character and conduct, but be-
cause she wished me to, and upon this peg will be sought
to be hung other statements and questions. Is it not in-

I hope my own darling has been taking care of herself
and that her chest is much better; please telegraph me when
you get this how you are, as I have been very anxious. I
trust you drive every day.

I fear I shall not now be able to leave till Monday evening
as there is some experimental work going on at Arklow, the
result of which I want to see before I go, and it will not be
finished till Monday.

I have been all alone here, my sister having left on the
Saturday before I arrived. I am longing for you every day
and every night, and would give worlds to have you here.


Nothing will be done about any vacancies till I return.

Mr. Chamberlain had referred in the House to a speech

*Philip Callan.


which Parnell was reported to have made in the Dublin
Mansion House on September 1st, 1885, and Parnell had

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Online LibraryKitty O'SheaCharles Stewart Parnell; his love story and political life (Volume 2) → online text (page 14 of 20)