The Aran Islands By John M. Synge





































































































 -  Immediately afterwards a rickety old
hooker beat up with turf from Connemara, and while she was unlading
all the men - Page 30
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Immediately Afterwards A Rickety Old Hooker Beat Up With Turf From Connemara, And While She Was Unlading All The Men Sat Along The Edge Of The Pier And Made Remarks Upon The Rottenness Of Her Timber Till The Owners Grew Wild With Rage.

The tide was now too low for more boats to come to the pier, so a move was made to a strip of sand towards the south-east, where the rest of the cattle were shipped through the surf.

Here the hooker was anchored about eighty yards from the shore, and a curagh was rowed round to tow out the animals. Each bullock was caught in its turn and girded with a sling of rope by which it could be hoisted on board. Another rope was fastened to the horns and passed out to a man in the stem of the curagh. Then the animal was forced down through the surf and out of its depth before it had much time to struggle. Once fairly swimming, it was towed out to the hooker and dragged on board in a half-drowned condition.

The freedom of the sand seemed to give a stronger spirit of revolt, and some of the animals were only caught after a dangerous struggle. The first attempt was not always successful, and I saw one three-year-old lift two men with his horns, and drag another fifty yards along the sand by his tail before he was subdued.

While this work was going on a crowd of girls and women collected on the edge of the cliff and kept shouting down a confused babble of satire and praise.

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