Thomas Cahill Quotes

Image, The phrase the violent bear it away fascinated the 20th century Irish-American

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The phrase the violent bear it away fascinated the 20th century Irish-American storyteller Flannery O'Connor, who used it as the title of one of her novels. O'Connor's surname connects her to an Irish royal family descended from Conchobor (pronounced Connor), the prehistoric king of Ulster who was foster father to Cuchulainn and husband of the unwilling Derdriu. In the western world, the antiquity of Irish lineages is exceeded only by that of the Jews.

Thomas Cahill

Image, The Jews started it all-and by ‘it’ I mean so many of

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The Jews started it all-and by 'it' I mean so many of the things we care about, the underlying values that make all of us, Jew and Gentile, believer and aethiest, tick. Without the Jews, we would see the world through different eyes, hear with different ears, even feel with different feelings ... we would think with a different mind, interpret all our experience differently, draw different conclusions from the things that befall us. And we would set a different course for our lives.

Thomas Cahill

Image, Wherever they went the Irish brought with them their books, many unseen

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Wherever they went the Irish brought with them their books, many unseen in Europe for centuries and tied to their waists as signs of triumph, just as Irish heroes had once tied to their waists their enemies' heads. Where they went they brought their love of learning and their skills in bookmaking. In the bays and valleys of their exile, they reestablished literacy and breathed new life into the exhausted literary culture of Europe. And that is how the Irish saved civilization.

Thomas Cahill

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Image, We normally think of history as one catastrophe after another, war followed

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We normally think of history as one catastrophe after another, war followed by war, outrage by outrage - almost as if history were nothing more than all the narratives of human pain, assembled in sequence. And surely this is, often enough, an adequate description. But history is also the narratives of grace, the recountings of those blessed and inexplicable moments when someone did something for someone else, saved a life, bestowed a gift, gave something beyond what was required by circumstance.

Thomas Cahill

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