Page:Life of John Boyle O'Reilly.djvu/190

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Brownson became enraged a second time and said, "I have knocked you down and I have apologized for it. If you say anything more about forgiving me, I will knock you down again." Dr. Brownson should not have been so severe on the Irish people, with whom, as this anecdote shows, he had a very kindred spirit. Another good anecdote was told of him by the late Bishop Fitzpatrick. Brownson had a marvelous memory, and a corresponding fluency in presenting facts with which his mind was so richly stored. Added to this was "a certain dogmatic way of enlightening the company on every subject. The Bishop, who was known to have been fond of a quiet joke, agreed with the rest to take him, for once, off his guard. They decided to study well some subject which Brownson would be least apt to think of, and accordingly fixed on Iceland. At the next gathering they caused the conversation gradually to slide into Iceland, directing it in a manner to set forth all their knowledge of the subject, and quietly ignoring the doctor as one out of his latitude. The latter, however, soon broke the ice, set them right on various points, and wound up with an elaborate array of facts. He afterward disclosed that he had recently been studying an extensive work on the subject, just issued; and the company despaired ever after of overshadowing Brownson on any subject whatever." The venerable controversialist died in April, 1876, heartily regretted even by those with whom he had broken lances in many a sharp encounter.

On the 6th of August, 1875, the centenary of O'Connell's birthday was celebrated by the Irish people throughout the world. In Dublin it was especially commemorated by the inauguration of a noble statue to (the Liberator, from the hand of the Irish sculptor, John Henry Foley, R.A. The celebration in Boston was a notable event. Wendell Phillips was the orator, and John Boyle O'Reilly the poet. Fully four thousand people crowded Music Hall; Patrick Donahoe presided. Governor Gaston, William Lloyd Garrison, General Banks, Charles Francis Adams, Jr., and leading clergymen of all denominations, with white and colored