School: Gráinseach, Cill Mocheallóg (roll number 9970)

Location:
Grange, Co. Limerick
Teacher:
Tomás Ó Loínsigh

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Proverbs and Local Sayings

Archival Reference

The Schools’ Collection, Volume 0516, Page 457

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Proverbs and Local Sayings
“An Empty House is better than a bad Tenant”
5
Over 410 years ago there was a shop-keeper named Collins in Limerick City who suffered very much from a bad tooth; but on no account would he allow a doctor or dentist to - draw it as he believed the doctor or dentist would literally pull the head off him.

One night, however, while he was asleep word was sent by his friends to a dentist who gave him a “whiff” of chloroform which reduced him to a state of insensibility.
The dentist then withdrew the tooth which had caused him such pain.
Shortly afterwards the patient woke and seeing the dentist near him he shouted violently at him but the dentist calmly said “An Empty House is better than a bad Tenant”.
The proverb still lives with the usual addition – “said the dentist” after it.
Mr. John Dooley (Farmer)
Grange, Kilmallock

Informant
Mr John Dooley
Gender
male
Occupation
farmer
Address
Grange, Co. Limerick
Language
English