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Word Count: 638
The Great Irish Famine of 1846 was called Gods Famine when an unknown uncontrolable disease which we now know as potato blight turned Irelands potato crop to slime By definition Gods Famine is the general scarcity of food brought about by divine intervention But the statistical commisioner Captain Larcom in 1847 found the total value of the agricultural produce in Ireland to be 44 958 That was enough to feed the eight million people living in Ireland plus another eight million besides One might ask why then this Great Famine It is true that in the early nineteenth century the potato did dominate the lives of two thirds of the Irish population but there was plenty of other food sources like wheat barley cattle and corn It is safe to say that in reality there was no scarcity of food and the failure of the potato though a factor had little to do with the root cause of the famine It is difficult to grasp the enormity of the tragedy that wiped out three million people in half a decade The truth of the matter is that when the blight struck Ireland was powerless to help herself for she was a conquered nationwith her destiny in the hands of a strong alien ruler - England This monstrosity had not happened just because the potato crop failed but rather in the name of British rule in Ireland Forced by the Act of Union with Great Britain the economy of Ireland was assemulated into the economy of England This social and economic change was to shape the destiny of the Irish and have a direct effect on the disaster to come So completely was the history of one the reverse of the other that what meant victory and prosperity for the englishman meant degredation and ruin for the irishman This point is undeniably made clear by the historian Robert Kee Freedom for one meant slavery for the
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