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Boyle Roche

  • Irish politician
  • Born 1736
  • Died 1807

Sir Boyle Roche, 1st Baronet (October 1736 – 5 June 1807) was an Irish politician. After a distinguished career in North America with the British Army, Roche became a member of the Irish House of Commons in 1775, generally acting in support of the viceregal government. He is better remembered for the language of his speeches than his politics—they were riddled with mixed metaphors ("Mr Speaker, I smell a rat; I see him forming in the air and darkening the sky; but I'll nip him in the bud"), malapropisms and other unfortunate turns of phrase ("Why we should put ourselves out of our way to do anything for posterity, for what has posterity ever done for us?").


Why should we put ourselves out of our way to do anything for posterity? For what has posterity ever done for us?




The only thing to prevent what's past is to put a stop to it before it happens.




We should silence anyone who opposes the right to freedom of speech.




Half the lies our opponents tell about us are untrue.




I answer in the affirmative with an emphatic 'No.'




Ireland and England are like two sisters; I would have them embrace like one brother.




Every pint bottle should contain a quart.




Mr Speaker, I smell a rat; I see him forming in the air and darkening the sky; but I will nip him in the bud.




All along the untrodden paths of the future, I can see the footprints of an unseen hand.




While I write this letter, I have a pistol in one hand and a sword in the other.




The cup of Ireland's misery has been overflowing for centuries and is not yet half full.




How can I be in two places at once, unless I were a bird?




The best way to avoid danger is to meet it plump.



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