Alban Butler

Life
1711-1773; compiler of Lives of the Principal Saints (1756-59); ed. Douai; Prof. Moral Theology, and Divinity, Douai; ord. 1735; sent into England, 1746; chaplain of Duke of Norfolk and tutor to heir (d.1767); treatises on rhetoric, English grammar advocating spelling reforms, music, and affinity as bar to marriage. ODNB

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Works
Lives of the Saints,
ed. Herbert Thurston & Norah Leeson (London: Burns, Oates & Washbourne [n.d.]); Meditations & Discourses on the Sublime Truths & Important Duties of Christianity, ed. John Lanigan [2 vols.] (Dublin 1853).

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Notes
Charles O’Conor
received Butler’s notes on ‘Life of St Lawrence’ from Archbishop Carpenter of Dublin, and remarks that it has given him ‘opportunity of correcting his mistakes, which are not a few.’ (See R. E. Ward and C. Ward, eds., Letters of Charles O’Conor of Belanagare (Cath. Univ. of America Press 1988, p.391.) Note also comments on ‘so learned a man and so acute a critic as the late Mr Butler’ (ibid., p.398).

William Carleton recounts how his own father imposed penitential pains upon himself while praying in the shape of ‘a round rod as thick as a the upper end of a horse-whip, on which he knelt, perhaps for a few hours [...].’ It was ‘penance of the severest kind got from certain specimens from Butler’s Lives of the Saints, a favourite book of his.’ (Autobiography, 1996 Edn., p.62.)

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