THE AUTHOR feels that some apology is required for having occupied in this volume so large a space with merely introductory matter. But Irish history is so little known, that it became necessary to explain at considerable length certain customs or usages of the antient Church of Ireland, which by some writers have been greatly misunderstood, and by others concealed or kept out of view. It was important to make it clear that those usages were not of the nature of heretical or schismatical irregularities, nor all of them, strictly speaking, peculiar to Ireland. Some of them were the result of the insulated position of the country, combined with the social condition of the people under the government of their aboriginal chieftains; some of them were antient customs, which continued to exist in Ireland long after they had been abolished elsewhere; and some had been abolished elsewhere for reasons which did not apply to Ireland. Aeterna Press
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