In the 19th century the Irish population was halved. This masterly book traces the three causes of this depletion; first the manine, second the Irish diaspora and the emigrations to places such as America and Canada and thridly the transportations of political activists to Australia. It is a quest for Keneally’s Irish ancestors. Based on unique research among little-used sources, the characters and their stories come brilliantly to life; this is an important book in which the main political themes are fascinatingly explored. It also contains a remarkable collection of photographs and documents.