Patrick Weston Joyce

THE first part of this little book (down to page 187) is an abridgment of my larger work, "A Short History of Ireland," of which the very words are used here as far as possible. The whole book is of necessity greatly condensed, containing much matter in little space: but it is not a cram book. It is a connected intelligible narrative, into which I have tried to infuse some life and human interest.

The series of short Chapters forming Part I., on the Literature, Art, and Institutions of ancient Ireland, will, I hope, prove useful; and perhaps they may be found interesting. In four of them I have given, in language as simple and clear as I could command, a popular exposition of a subject not easy to deal with—the Brehon Laws, including those relating to land.

I have, I hope, written soberly and moderately, avoiding exaggeration and bitterness, and showing fair play all round. A writer may accomplish all this while sympathising heartily, as I do, with Ireland and her people.

P. W. J.