When Delia made the above claim she was as usual somewhat overstating her case. The great aristocratic or mercantile families of England might well have welcomed a Parnell daughter-in-law provided she brought to the union a marriage portion handsome enough to overcome her obscure origins in the middling squirearchy of Ireland. But this was not to be; John Parnell had not followed the upper-class custom of endowering his six daughters and Delia’s dearest wish that they should marry English aristocrats was never to be fulfilled. Had she confined her claim to Ireland, however, she would have been on firmer ground for here the family name was indeed honoured and an alliance with even an impecunious Parnell might have been considered a matter of pride.
KeywordsTravel Diary American Minister Obscure Origin Bubonic Plague Land Tenure Arrangement
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