Tourism, Landscape, and the Irish Character: British Travel Writers in Pre-Famine Ireland
Picturesque but poor, abject yet sublime in its Gothic melancholy, the Ireland perceived by British visitors during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries did not fit their ideas of progress, propriety, and Protestantism. The rituals of Irish Catholicism, the lamentations of funeral wakes, the Irish language they could not comprehend, even the landscapes were all strange to tourists from England, Wales, and Scotland. Overlooking the acute despair in England’s own industrial cities, these travelers opined in their writings that the poverty, bog lands, and ill-thatched houses of rural Ireland indicated moral failures of the Irish character.
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Thomas Campbell stopped short of Galway because , as he wrote , “ I begin to be
tired of wretched villages , and uncultivated wastes . ” 5 Of course , not every
eighteenth - century traveler was put off from visiting the West . In the 1770s the ...
Journal of Galway Archeological and Historical Society 47 ( 1995 ) : 87 – 107 .
Rackham , Oliver . “ Ancient Woodland and Hedges in England . " In The English
Landscape : Past , Present , and Future . Edited by S . R . J . Woodell , 48 – 67 .
See also flax Lismore Castle , 33 Listole , County Kerry , 26 - 27 Lough Corrib ,
County Galway , 173 Lough Corrib - Galway Canal , 168 , 184 Lough Derg ,
County Donegal , 48 – 49 , 156 , 209n26 Lough Mask , County Mayo , 168 – 69