Marx-Engels Correspondence 1870

Engels To Marx

Source: Marx and Engels on Ireland, Progress Publishers, 1971;
Transcribed: by Andy Blunden.

January 19, 1870

I have at last discovered a copy of Prendergast in a local library and hope that I shall be able to obtain it. To my good or bad fortune, the old Irish laws are also to appear soon, and I shall thus have to wade through those as well. The more I study the subject, the clearer it is to me that Ireland has been stunted in her development by the English invasion and thrown centuries back. And this ever since the 12th century; furthermore, it should be borne in mind, of course, that three centuries of Danish invasions and plunder had by then substantially drained the country. But these latter had ceased over a hundred years earlier.

In recent years, research on Ireland has become somewhat more critical, particularly as far as Petrie’s studies of antiquity are concerned; he impelled me also to read some Celtic-Irish (naturally with a parallel translation). It does not seem all that difficult, but I shall not delve deeper into the stuff, I have had enough philological nonsense. In the next few days, when I get the book, I'll see how the old laws have been dealt with.