The Naked Truth


The Shelbourne Hotel this morning

This afternoon.

Further to the removal of four statues depicting Nubian Princesses and their ‘slaves’ outside the Shelbourne Hotel…

…One can only imagine the reference to Nubia arose from the fact that the hotel’s owners and architect would have been aware that many of ancient Egypt’s luxury commodities were sourced in the Nubia region – today divided between southern Egypt and Sudan – and that Nubian princesses had several times married into the Egyptian royal family.

In this context, the four statues in fact represented royal ladies, two from Egypt and two from Nubia, hinting at the lavish luxuries that awaited patrons within the new hotel.

It seems it is this reference to “Nubia” which has misled popular thought. The “nubian slave” is, indeed, a widely fetishised Orientalist visual trope of the 19th century.

The Nubian Slave by Antonio Rossetti, circa 1850

However, she differs from the Shelbourne statue in one important aspect: she is almost invariably (and with some degree of historic authenticity) represented nude….

One of the statues now removed from the Shelbourne Hotel

The lavish draping and jewellery of the Shelbourne statue clearly demonstrate it is not, nor was it ever intended to be read as a slave.

It is only to be hoped that those wishing in future to act – with the very best of intentions – in solidarity with positive societal movements might take a moment to ensure that their actions have basis in sound research. [More at link below]

Kyle Leyden.

London, UK.

Removal of statues from the Shelbourne (Irish Times Letters)

Yesterday: Slaves To Political Correctness


38 thoughts on “The Naked Truth

  1. Junkface

    “..Might take a moment to ensure that their actions have basis in sound research”

    Good statement from the expert there. Always try to do the opposite of whatever seems to be the group behavioral trend or hysteria in society (they’re usually wrong or misguided) and instead think critically as an individual.

  2. NobleLocks

    Delighted to see that the import of the disgusting cancel culture from the Neo-Right in the US was pulled up by the planning authority. I doubt sense will prevail for too long as someone is offended . oh the humanity!

    1. Mary (Never) Wong

      Would you put yourself forward for a model casting if asked? (Please say yes).

    2. NobleLocks

      Perhaps we should put up statues of the Irish people taken as slaves from Baltimore by the Barbars in 1631?

      Hmmm that might not be approved of too, it would offend the BLSJW’s on the grounds that you’re not allowed remind them that they haven’t got a monopoly on slavery victim status.

      Only BL people were slaves dontchaknow….

        1. NobleLocks

          Or I believe that bull should be called out at every available opportunity… I’d ask you to decide but it seems you can’t bring an open mind to a debate. Or you fear debate. Or you need to denounce and belittle people in order to feel good about yourself. Personally I think you’re the last option and I think that says all anyone needs to know….

          1. sidhe

            I think your version of ‘calling out bull’ and mine differ

            it’s all subjective. no one is denying that slavery isn’t something that has happened the world over – or that the Irish never experienced it, or used it for their own gains either, or that slavery no longer exists, for that matter.

            the BLM movement is one that is specific to America, and others are piggybacking off it here in Ireland and the UK to highlight elements of racism in our own societies. it, like many other social movements of the 21st century, has been pushed along and accelerated by social media, and like many other movement of its type, will gain momentum and then slow and quiet down again, before maybe flaring up again.

            its a cyclical thing, and yet you get your knickers in a twist over every little post about this kind of thing, ‘calling out’ those nasty sjws (snowflakes last year, millenials before that) for jumping on a movement, as if no generation has ever done that before, and bemoaning them as the ‘neo-right’ or whatever you want to call them today – is it not a waste of energy?

            on a separate note, the Des Ekin book about those Barbary pirates is an excellent read

        1. NobleLocks

          lol, you too…

          The gas thing is I don’t even know your opinion as all you do is cast insults and slurs like like a nauseating teen so you can “sound good” to your “mates”. Look how Woke I am! How Stunning and Brave!

          And all the while you haven’t had a single answer. Your position must be very weak indeed if it cannot withstand debate. Pathetic.

    3. Matt Pilates

      True. I think a replacement of Frank McDonald in the nip might be worth pondering.

  3. class wario

    did literally anybody raise an issue about these statues beforehand? I don’t think I’ve ever paid them much notice and I’d pass the place on the regular.

    seems like the hotel went off on did something totally unprompted and then the usual suspects kicked up a fuss about this cancel culture boogeyman holding them at gunpoint or whatever

    1. Mr .T

      The hotel literally isn’t allowed to alter the building & it’s facade without planning permission.
      It’s a protected structure, so yes, people do have a right to be outraged about a hotel chain removing protected statues with no consultation/permission, and ultimately as it turns out – for no good reason!

      1. class wario

        you misunderstand: what I meant was that I have not heard of a single soul complain about these statues in the context of ‘BLM’ or ‘SJWs’ or whatever you’re having yourself. and yet this inexplicable removal is being contextualised as the SJW boogeyman trying to destroy history etc etc. this just seems like another thing absolutely nobody asked for which tbqh does nothing for anybody

  4. Gerry

    Even if they were Nubian princesses and slaves, they should have been left;

    1 they were not glorifying slavery
    2 if racist, they were “exotic east” tropes, cheesy orientalism rather than suggesting inferiority
    3 if two of the figures were identifiable as slaves, why not remove the shackles (or gild them as bracelets) or whatever and make them all princesses, modernity responding to problematic historical art if you will.

    I presume celebrating the ancient power, beauty and culture of Egypt is ok, isn’t it?

    Anyway what’s done is done, and I for one think the city has lost something

    1. Termagant

      “modernity responding to problematic historical art”
      this turned my frown the right way up
      just leave it alone! nobody cares!

      1. Gerry

        Termagant by name …

        Please read my post a little more closely. The “as it were.” that followed the cliche formula “modernity responding to problematic historical art” was intended as a written eye roll at the intellectually vapid statement you correctly understood as silly. Reluctantly, if the statues have to be changed (which I don’t think they do, for the reasons above) the smallest change possible with a glib slogan should suffice — there, I have spelled it out, how boring, like explaining a joke

    2. Scundered

      The SJW’s don’t care about context, even if you are correct. Everything is judged by their perpetually fragile feelings.

      1. sidhe

        that’s really quite a sweeping statement

        are you not as guilty then, kicking up a stink because you don’t like the reaction?

  5. Brian

    Yeah, I was also under the impression they had ankle shackles on them. However maybe they are anklets (
    On the statue the only parts in gold are the lamp holder, the piece on the headdress, and the anklets/shackles. This might imply that they were jewellery. However, maybe Nubian slaves were given high value shackles by wealthy owners (although gold is a relatively soft metal and probably not ideal for shackles).
    If only there were any experts in historical artefacts who worked near The Shelbourne…
    Ideally the statues could be replaced with statues of Shelbourne legends such as Wes Hoolahan.

  6. Scundered

    It’s ok to be offended, so please let’s stop with the kneejerk reactions to appease all those offended as though they are always correct.

  7. Matt Pilates

    Why not move the statues of Phil Lynott and Luke Kelly to the plinths and make new statues of Imelda May and Saoirse Ronan to join them.

  8. NobleLocks

    Well it was confirmed last night on Prime Time that the statues were not slaves. The “shackles” are in fact anklets and the person who whipped up all of this S H One T was Neil O’Dowd an Irish-American “Journalist”.

    He has a right to say what he thinks, but as a journalist he has a responsibility to do his research first. Yet another example of rights coming before responsibilities, when clearly it should always be the other way around.

    He also has a right to be a complete AR$E, one which, it seems, he has embraced fully.

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