The Christian Science Monitor

No, the Irish were not slaves in the Americas

In America, St. Patrick's Day, which arrives on Saturday, means peak exposure to a particular class of assertion that Irish people charitably refer to as "blarney."

You might hear, for instance, that St. Patrick chased the snakes out of Ireland (they were never there in the first place), that the color historically associated with him is green (it's actually blue), that he evangelized with a four-leaf clover (three leaves, to represent the Trinity), or that an Irish monk “discovered” America 500 years before Columbus (utter bollocks).

These misconceptions are

A crucial distinction

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