This is the Daniel O'Connell statue on Dublin's O'Connell Street, complete with seagull perched jauntily on O'Connell's crown:At four corners of the statue sit four angels. Here is one of the four:
The angel is holding a bundle of rods with an axehead jutting out the top. Readers familiar with modern European history will recognise the shape. Here is one of the contexts in which that symbol was used:
The rods and axe are called "fasces", and were used by Mussolini's Fascist Party during their reign in Italy.
Yet the statue predated the rise of Italian fascism by many decades, sculptor John Henry Foley finishing the work in 1882. The fasces feature widely in American state symbolism too: Abraham Lincoln's great statue includes his hands resting on two fasces while the Seal of the United States Senate features crossed fasces which, they explain, "represent freedom and authority".
In fact the fasces were used in Ancient Rome as a symbol of authority. Fascist Italians may have been attracted by this mixture of violent power and collectivism: the rods tied together are stronger than any individual rod alone. Like the swastikas plastered all over Hindu and Buddhist temples centuries older than Hitler, the pre-Fascist fasces lingering in plain sight today seem rather weird anachronisms, respected ancient symbols polluted by the memory of Mussolini.