‘Paddy on the make’?

Published in Issue 3 (May/June 2017), Letters, Volume 25

Sir,—Joseph Mannion (HI 25.2, March/April ’17) suggests that Sir Francis Shane’s ‘unwavering allegiance to the crown transcends the social and ethnic divisions of the period, [and] challenges traditional perceptions of contemporary Irish society’, as Shane, who came from a Gaelic Irish background, was, in the words of Sir Geoffrey Fenton, ‘a faithful and assured instrument … always to the State’. Perhaps the truth is that Sir Francis Shane, like many of his contemporaries, saw what way the ‘wind in Tudor Ireland was blowing’ and knew how to ensure that his bread continued to be buttered. He is an example of what would in the next few centuries become a common enough individual, ‘Paddy on the Make’!—Yours etc.,

PAT BURKE

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