Page:The Irish in Australia.djvu/160

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examples of portrait and character painting may be met with in a charming little collection of "Waifs and Strays, by an Irish-Australian Emigrant." Glancing around for the first time on his fellow-passengers, he says: "It was not difficult to recognise the frank, intelligent face of the Irish Celt; the cold, self-important bearing of the Englishman was equally unmistakable; upon every side resounded the pleasant dialect of the Scot; and scattered here and there might be seen natives of Poland, Germany, Italy and France, still retaining a little of their picturesque national costumes. There was a large number of my countrymen on board, and one of the few real pleasures I enjoyed was to observe the good sense and the good nature by which they were habitually distinguished. Avoiding every unreasonable ground of quarrel, they associated in a kindly brotherhood with their fellow-voyagers of every country and creed; and it was equally novel and delightful to see Irish, English and Scotch doing justice to each other, and avoiding the dismal feuds which originate in the vices of their rulers. But still the exiled Celts seemed proud of their old historic island, and evidently regarded themselves as defenders of her fame. Some stupid insult having been offered to Ireland by a few ignorant malcontents one evening, it was resented in a manner which effectually prevented its repetition. 'Although we have been driven into exile,' observed one of the actors in this scene (a fine young fellow from Cork), 'don't think that we have forfeited our nationality.'"

The departing emigrant was denied the sorrowful favour of seeing his native shores fade away in the distance. "At about eight o'clock a.m. we knew that the dark outline which loomed on our left was Holyhead, but not even thus dimly could we discern to the right the 'green, holy hills of