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Title: McMahon Glynn, Patrick to Glynn, James P., 1893
CollectionPatrick McMahon Glynn_Letters to his family (1874-1927) [Gerald Glynn O'Collins]
SenderMcMahon Glynn, Patrick
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationlawyer
Sender Religionunknown
OriginAdelaide, South Australia, Australia
DestinationGort, Co. Galway, Ireland
RecipientGlynn, James P.
Recipient Gendermale
Doc. No.
Partial Date
Doc. Type
Word Count813
Genrepolitics, debts
TranscriptQueens Chambers
Pirie St. Adelaide
May 9th 1893

My dear James
You asked in your last letter which of us owed one to another—
but the answer does not matter. In these matters I neither stand on
ceremony or in gratitude, the motto being to write as the humor
seizes one and time allows. I suppose you sometimes hear about us,
though letters may be infrequent. After twelve years, or rather 13
years, [it] does not make much difference in my memory of or
regard for those at home, but it enlarges the circle of one's acquaintances—something different from intimates—here or rather I should
say the number of one's obligations. You mentioned, I think, the Irish question. I have not your letter by me, as Eugene, to whom I sent it for consideration, has not returned it. You may make your mind easy about me and the Irish question. I see a little further, perhaps, than you credit me with doing, and have studied the world outside an academic chair. Perhaps
having mixed and fought with men makes me a little tolerant. However,
I may say this: the struggles of Irish and English factions interest
me a little, but are by no means my exclusive concern. I skim, rather
than read, the Irish newspapers, and believe that neither Parnellism,
nor McCarthyism, Redmondism nor Tim Healyism contains the
solution of the eternal Irish puzzle. Neither does Unionism. The
latter has been tried and failed. Autonomy will be tried, and you
will have no Utopia. Now it is not a question of what ought to be,
but of what has to be. Indeed, experience of life will tell you that
that is the question that in all cases eventually presses. But where
statesmanship and the deep future are concerned, neither the ways of
clerical politicans or wirepullers nor the vulgarity of clever parvenues
are of very great concern.
I am glad your literary work is under way again. Here, as everywhere,
there is over-supply, especially in the fiction line, but eventually
good work gets a hearing. Besides, there is generally a pleasure in
writing what is really good. Even what is only half-and-half or
unpretentious is not without its personal rewards and compensations,
as in the gestation of some devil-may-care reminiscences of mine—
or rather obiter dicta on nothing and everything—I have had more
pleasure than in the monetary return from the publication, on the
suggestion of an editor, of part of them.
Now, as to your financial scheme to restore the O'Donnells to
temporary solvency. As you are evidently under a misapprehension
as to both my position and relation to my relations—if the tautology
will be excused—I had better give you a small notion. On this side
of the world my poor relations (I call them mine as I am the only one
that acknowledges them all) are legion. The Bergins are numerous,
respectable, and eternally hard up. Such small matters as a few
pounds are too inconsiderable to even call for an acknowledgment.
If I send a fiver to one quarter, I am sure to receive an application
within a week for another from some where else. This week, for
instance, poor Mary Anne Glynn—blind, a pauper, deserted by her sisters (Fanny knows nothing of it) proud etc. etc., writes to me from
the Destitute Asylum, that she lacks even the poorest comforts that
would make her last days tolerable. Of course, I can't let her die like
that. Now I am the only male friend or relation in Australia that
ever writes to these people, who in turn know nothing of one another.
For these reasons, I cannot stand too much. Both Eugene & myself
have written home to say we will, if drunkenness has made the old
home intolerable, give my mother £100 a year, but neither he nor I
can at present see our way to help to pay O'Donnell's debts. I had
the idea in mind once myself, but as the O'Donnells are, in my case,
only one in several, I postponed it as out of the question. I have
dropped £280 in the last election & so on. I firmly believe if I was
married, I would live on a third of my present, or recent, outlay, and
have the blessing besides that renders existence a little pleasant at
times at all events. To me with the eternal drumming of an hypertrophied
heart, it is anything but such.
I am forced to parade the financial question, as I really think
you know next to nothing of my situation. A little later, I may see
opportunities more favorable. Please excuse my hurry and seeming
forgetfulness of yourself. How are you both? Mrs. Glynn seems to
be a favorite with those who met her. For the present, excuse

Your affectionate Brother
P. McM. Glynn