Father Matthew and the Irish Temperance Movement 1839-1848 by Colm Kerrigan


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A critical analysis of Fr. Mathew’s famous crusade against drink

This book is an examination of Father Mathew’s crusade against drink by means of a critical analysis of key issues that were central to it. These include the rise and progress of the Mathewite temperance movement in the context of pre-Famine Ireland; the influence of the movement on drink consumption and on crime; the extent to which superstitious beliefs helped or hindered it; its relationship with the repeal movement and the attitude of the Catholic clergy. Finally, there is an attempt to assess the long term significance of the crusade.

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