Uncovering Irish Attitudes to Shakespeare

Originally posted on the Burns Library blog –

John J. Burns Library's Blog

This week we feature a guest post by our current Burns Visiting Scholar in Irish Studies, Patrick Lonergan, Professor of Drama and Theatre Studies at the National University of Ireland, Galway

On 23 April 1916, the British academic Israel Gollancz published A Book of Homage to Shakespeare, a beautifully produced volume that gathered poems and essays to celebrate the 300th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death. It’s an impressive volume, including contributions from major British writers such as Galsworthy, Kipling and Hardy – but it also did much to invent what we might now call ‘Global Shakespeare’ by featuring work not just in English but in Hindi, Urdu, Afrikaans, French, Russian and many other languages.

It also includes a contribution in Irish. Written by Douglas Hyde, a founder of the Gaelic League and (later) the first President of Ireland, it’s a poem written in the form of a dream vision, in…

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