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ID
b86
Title
The Irishman
Genre
Story
Page Count
12
Word Count
2350
Publisher
Esquire
John O'London's Weekly
Publication Year
1934
Document Types
Comic Fiction
First-Person Narratives
Topics
Boyhood

A boy narrates an interchange between the 'Spriv' -- a 'large florid, purplish-faced man, with the arrogant strut of a cock pheasant and a big straw-chewing mouth that never opened except to lie and boast of his own doings with the gun and the trombone or to sneer at the littleness of other people' and his lying equal, a small Irishman full of tales of hunting, walking, and musical exploits. This comic piece was titled 'The Spriv' in John O'London's Weekly (July 14, 1934), and then 'The Irishman' in Cut and Come Again (1935), Thirty-One Selected Tales (1947), evidently reflecting a reconsideration by Bates of the story's 'twist'. Reprinted as 'The Spriv's Master' in Esquire (August 1934) showing additional evidence of Bates's uncertainty regarding an ideal title.