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Archiver > KEARNS > 1998-07 > 0899747841


From: <>
Subject: Fr.Kearns
Date: Mon, 6 Jul 1998 09:57:21 -0800


Thought maybe some of you would enjoy this one:

Irish Times Monday, June 2, 1997
Irishman's Diary
By Padraig O'Morain

Proposals of marriage have been made under odd circumstances but
surely none so odd as those in which Father Mogue Kearns received
such a proposal in 1798.

Father Kearns had gone into hiding after the Battle of Clonard, Co
Meath, during the uprising. When the militia captured him, writes
James Robinson, "he was tied and placed on his horse and roped to a
tree. The militia party repaired for refreshment and left him to
hang, when his horse would move. Every time the horse moved Fr Kearns
was heard to exclaim 'Whoa Boby if ye gang - I'll hang!'

"Two Robinson girls witnessed this scene from a nearby home and one
offered to free him - if he'd marry her. He refused the offer stating
that he was a Catholic priest and this prevented from getting
married. She did release him, however."

Fr Kearns's escape was shortlived: He was later captured, tried, and
hung, drawn and quartered at Blundell wood near the town of Edenderry.
No room for error there.

Actually, Mr Robinson writes, this was the third attempt to hang Fr
Kearns, described as a man of huge physical proportions. "Fr Kearns
had taken part in the French Revolution and had escaped death when
the post from which he was suspended buckled under his weight and he
escaped being hanged in 1789."

Whatever Father Kearns may have thought of the Robinson girls and
their views on how to get a husband, he can thank them for helping to
keep his memory alive.

His story is a small fragment - literally a footnote - in The
Robinsons of North Kildare, by Mr James Robinson. The great thing
about this book for those of us who are not Robinsons - and a great
many of us are not - is that its author is a man who does not believe
in letting a good story pass him by.

Lionel Kearns,1616 Charles Street,Vancouver, B.C. Canada V5L 2T3
phone: (604) 254-3512 fax: (604) 254-8687

Lionel Kearns,1616 Charles Street,Vancouver, B.C. Canada V5L 2T3
phone: (604) 254-3512 fax: (604) 254-8687

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