The Sentence

dscf3453“They held a special court and sentenced him to be hanged from an old crane in the market square. This crane was usually used fro weighing commodities, potatoes and and such like. We come to the day of this execution now. On that day in June 1799 all the business places in the town were closed up, land there was no traffic allowed on the thoroughfare.

When he was about to be hanged, the priest called for a drink of clean water, but there was no response to his request from his executioners. At the same time there was an old man of the name of Barrett walking along the street. He heard the priest calling for a drink, but there was no means of getting any vessel, cup, mug or anything else to bring it to him. This poor man Richard Barrett took off his boot and cleaned it, and went to a stream and brought it back full of cold water to the priest. The priest took it, and drank and said in Irish to him Fad  saol is sean agat agus glor na bfalathas ar an saol eile agat:” We are told that that man lived to a great age and died a most peaceful and happy death. He was from a place called Tirwaley.”

Pat Molloy, Keel, Achill;  NFC 1015: 54-9
Special Thanks
Dr. Críostóir Mac Cárthaigh, Interim Director National Folklore Collection / Cnuasach Bhéaloideas Éireann University College Dublin / An Coláiste Ollscoile, Baile Átha Cliath