In Brief

Though it is a poor excuse for bathing only once a month, Stephen is correct that "All Ireland is washed by the gulfstream." This current in the North Atlantic carries massive amounts of warm water from the Gulf of Mexico to the northwestern edges of Europe. Westerly winds transfer much of the heat inland, making Ireland more temperate than its latitude would predict and also very wet. The ocean currents lapping at its shores and the rain constantly threatening to pour from its skies mean that the island is indeed "washed by the gulfstream."

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Declan Kiberd calls the sentence a "famous line" from an "Irish geography book." He does not identify the book.  

JH 2019
The geography of the Gulf Stream. Source: