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Letter from George Yeats to Thomas MacGreevy. 28 June 1925.

[p.1 recto]

82 Merrion Sq.
June 28.

My dear Tom

Many thanks for yours of June 16. No, Lennox was very discreet about your newses — so I dont know much of what you are doing or going to do. The Divorce SpeechWB Yeats's speech to the Senate against the prohibition of divorce on 11 June 1925 caused considerable stir throughout the countrynote has at any rate made people sit up — and whether they do so on a hard backed chair with their mouths in a horizontal line, or in arm-chairs with their mouths open, dont seem to much matter. But the Magical Sleep of hypocrisy & custom has had an abrupt waking! They are shocked at the mention of their immaculate O'ConnellDaniel O'Connell (1775-1847), "the Liberator", founder of the Repeal Movement and tireless worker for Catholic Emancipation; Yeats's remarks concerned the tolerance displayed by Irish monuments, adding "It was said about O'Connell, in his own day, that you could not throw a stick over a workhouse wall without hitting one of his children, but he believed in the indissolubility of marriage, and when he died his heart was very properly preserved in Rome". note — but last night a good Catholic told W. the follow story — a man went to O'Connells house & found many pretty servant-girls waiting upon O'Connell. The man said "What a lot of pretty maids you have. Where are they to be had? And O'Connell's reply 'Upon the fur rug in the dining-room".

[p.1 verso]The last few weeks — on looking back — seem an endless turmoil. A good deal of Senate & business, a good deal of Lady Gregory & a hell of a lot of pain. I have & have had a "dry Pleurisy" which is infernally painful. I am almost ashamed of always having something the matter & feel obliged to say 'very well thank you' when I long to say 'like Hell' & to be sympathised with & coped with & for, & patted & tucked up! I am up & about again but rather gingerly & the arrears & futures of letters & so on fill me with despair. However all passes in time. We go to Ballylee on the 14th & I hope to Switzerland on Aug 12 or so. Write a line to say how London feels — I am homesick for it.


George Yeats

T. MacGreevy Esq.
127 Ebury Street
London. W1
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