Matthew Concanen


Life
1701-1749; b. Ireland; Wexford Wells (1721), comedy with songs, Isaac Sparks in lead role; published in Dublin A Match of Football, or The Irish Champions (1721) , a mock-heroic poem in three cantos; Poems upon Several Occasions (1722), issued Miscellaneous Poems: Original and translated by several Hands (1724), earliest printed anthology of Irish authors containing poems by Delany, Parnell, Philips (“October ale”), Sheridan, Smedley, Sterling, Swift, and Ward, including his own ‘Match at Football’ (1721), set in Lusk;
 
accepted government employment as a journalist; following his attack on Pope he was made a butt of satire in Dunciad (1728), appearing as a hack writer in the fourth book (1742), where there are two allusions to him; turned Richard Brome’s comedy Jovial Crew into a ballad opera (1731), with some by Yonge and Roome to music by William Bates; ed. Miscellany of Taste (1733), including Pope and Congreve; became attorney-gen. of Jamaica 1732-48, returning with considerable wealth;
 
died soon after of consumption in London; Richard Ryan commences the second volume of Biographia Hibernica: Irish Worthies (1821) with him (p.1). RR CAB ODNB PI GBI DIW OCIL FDA

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Works
  • The Jovial Crew: A Comic-opera ... With additional songs by E. Roome, M. Concanen and Sir W. Yonge] With the airs prefix'd to each song [1731] (London: J. & R. Tonson 1760 [3rd Edn.]), 42pp., 8o., and Do. [another edn.] as it is performed at the Theatre-Royal in Covent-Garden (Dublin: Sarah Cotter 1766), 44pp.; Do. [var. rep. edns.] 1760 [2nd. imp.], 1761, 1766, 1767, 1774, 1780, 1781); also
  • New Book of Songs (1731) [taken from above];
  • The Flower-piece: A Collection of Miscellany Poems by Several Hands (London: for J. Walthoe & H. Walthoe 1731), xii, 251, [1], [12]pp., 12o;
  • A Compleat Collection of all the Verses, Essays, Letters and Advertisements, which have been occasioned by the publication of three volumes of Miscellanies by Pope and Company [i.e., the “Miscellanies in Prose and Verse” ed. by Swift and Pope]. To which is added an exact list of the lords, ladies, gentlemen, and others who have been abused in those volumes, with a large dedication [by Matthew Concanen, the Elder] to the author of “The Dunciad”, containing some animadversions upon that extraordinary performance (London: A. Moore 1728), xv, 52pp., 8o.;
  • A Compleat Collection of all the verses, essays, letters ... occasioned by the publication of 3 miscellanies by Pope and company ... dedicated [by M. Concanen] to the author of the “Dunciad” (1728);
  • A Match at Foot-ball, or the Irish Champions, 3 cantos (1721);
  • Miscellaneous Poems [viz. Swift, Parnell, Delaney, Brown, Ward, Sterling, Concanen et al.] (1732);
  • Poems on Several Occasions (Dublin: Dobson 1722);
  • Rise and Fall of the late projected excise (1733);
  • The Speculist, coll. of letters and essays originally contributed to the British Journal and London Journal, 203pp. (1730);
  • A Supplement to the Profound, containing several examples, very proper to illustrate the rules laid down in the late treatise, called The Art of Sinking in Poetry [by Pope] ... extracts from ingenious authors of that accurate piece ... 2 letters, p. vi 38 (1728);
  • ed., A Miscellany in Taste, inc. critical pieces by Pope and Congreve (1733).
  • The Advice by Mr Concanen: Set by Mr. Galliard (London [1740]) 1 leaf [n.p.];

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Commentary

Jonathan Swift—
 
‘Concannen, more aspiring Bard,
Soars downwards, deeper, by a Yard
...’
 
In “Poetry: A Rhapsody” [1733]; rep. in Robert Mahony, ed., Different Styles of Poetry, Verse by Lord Roscommon, Thomas Parnell, and Jonathan Swift [Irish Writings in the Age of Swift, No. 8] (Dublin: Cadenus Press 1978), p.118.

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References
G. C. Duggan, The Stage Irishman (1937) is unable to trace Concanon’s [sic] The Wexford Walls [sic].

Seamus Deane, gen. ed., The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing (Derry: Field Day 1991), Vol. 1 indicates that he attacked Pope’s Dunciad in 1728.

Peter Kavanagh, Irish Theatre (Tralee 1946), Concanen occurs in The Dunciad (1729), ii, 299-304, as a result of a slighting reference. See also under Sterling, James.

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British Library holds [1] A Supplement to the Profund. Containing several examples, very proper to illustrate the rules laid down in a late treatise, called The Art of Sinking in Poetry [i.e. “Peri Bathous: or, Martin Scriblerus his Treatise of the Art of Sinking in Poetry,” written by Pope, and published in the “last volume” of the “Miscellanies in Prose and Verse” edited jointly by Swift and Pope]. Extracted from the poetical works of the ingenious authors of that accurate piece In two letters to a friend. [by Matthew Concanen, the elder.] [Another copy.] A Supplement to the Profund, etc. ms. notes [by A. Pope]. vi, 34pp. J. Roberts: London, 1728. 8o. 1728. 8o. [2] Title The Jovial Crew. A comic-opera ... [Altered from R. Brome’s comedy. With additional songs, by E. Roome, M. Concanen, and Sir W. Yonge.] With the music prefix’d to each song. Title [Another copy.] Title [Another edition.]. 68pp. J. Watts: London, 1731. 8o., 17pp. Harrison & Co.: London, 1780. 8o. [3] A Match at Foot-Ball: a poem, in three cantos. [The dedication signed: M. C., i.e. Matthew Concanen.]. 42pp. The Author: Dublin, 1720. 8o. [4] Miscellaneous Poems, original and translated, by several hands. Viz. Dean Swift, Mr. Parnel, Dr. Delany, Mr. Brown, Mr. Ward, Mr. Sterling, Mr. Concannen, and others. Published by Mr. Concannen.. vii, 416pp. J. Peele: London, 1724. 8o. [5] Poems upon Several Occasions. By the author of, the Match at Football (Mat. Concanen).. xx, 99pp. E. Dobson: Dublin, 1722. 8o. [6] Aix La Chapelle; or, the Tinker and his dog, a poetic sketch.. 21pp. Printed for the Author; sold by A. Redford, &c. London, 1818. 8o [7] The History and Antiquities of the Parish of St. Saviour’s, Southwark. Illustrated with plates. Title [Another copy.] Title [Another copy.]. viii, 280 pp.. Printed by J. Delahoy [Deptford;] sold by J. Parsons [London,] 1795. 8o. [8] A New Book of Songs, sung in a new opera, call’d the Jovial Crew. 8pp. J. Dillow: London, 1731. 8o. [9] The Jovial Crew. A comic-opera ... [Altered from Richard Brome’s comedy. With additional songs by E. Roome, M. Concanen and Sir W. Yonge.] With the airs prefix’d to each song. Title The second edition. Title The third edition. Title [Another edition.] Title [Another edition.] Title A new edition, with additional songs, and alterations. Title A new edition, etc. Title [Another edition.]. 34pp. James Hoey: Dublin, 1732. 8o. 42pp. J. & R. Tonson: London, 1760. 8o. 42pp. J. & R. Tonson: London, 1760. 8o. 42pp. J. & R. Tonson: London, 1761. 8o. 44pp. Sarah Cotter: Dublin, 1766. 12o. 46pp. J. & R. Tonson: London, 1767. 8o. 46pp. T. Lowndes; T. Caslon; W. Nicoll; S. Bladon: London, 1774. 8o. 50pp. John Bell: London, 1781. 12o. [10] The Flower-Piece: a collection of miscellany poems. By several hands. [edited by Matthew Concanen, the Elder?] xii, 251pp. J. Walthoe; H. Walthoe: London, 1731. 12o. [11] Essays, etc.. London, 1827. 8o. [12] A Match at Foot-Ball; or the Irish Champions; a mock-heroic poem, in three cantos. [by M. Concanen.] Title [Another copy.] A Match at Foot-ball; or the Irish champions, etc. [by Matthew Concanen the Elder.] [Another copy.]. London, 1721. 8o. London, 1721. 8o. [13] Lines on the death of-[i.e. R. B. Sheridan] from the Morning Chronicle of ... August 5, 1816. [by T. Moore] ... Republished, without note or comment. Title [Another edition.] Lines sopposed to be written on the Death of the late R. B. Sheridan Esqr as an anonymous tribute to departed genius. Lithographied by the possessor ... with additional lines [by M. Concanen], addressed to Friendship.. London, 1816. 8o. [1816.] s. sh. fol. [14] A Compleat Collection of all the Verses, Essays, Letters and Advertisements, which have been occasioned by the publication of three volumes of Miscellanies by Pope and Company [i.e. the “Miscellanies in Prose and Verse” edited jointly by Swift and Pope]. To which is added an exact list of the lords, ladies, gentlemen, and others who have been abused in those volumes. With a large dedication [by Matthew Concanen, the Elder] to the author of the Dunciad, containing some animadversions upon that extraordinary performance. [Another copy.] Title [Another copy.] A Compleat Collection of all the Verses, Essays, Letters and Advertisements, which have been occasioned by the publication of three volumes of Miscellanies, by Pope and Company, etc.. xv, 52pp. A. Moore: London, 1728. 8o. London, 1728. 8o. [15] A Miscellany on Taste. By Mr. Pope, &c. Viz. I. Of Taste in Architecture. An epistle to the Earl of Burlington. With notes variorum, and a compleat key. II. Of Mr. Pope’s Taste in Divinity, viz. The Fall of Man, and the First Psalm. Translated for the use of a young lady. III. Of Mr. Pope’s Taste of Shakespeare. [A letter, addressed “To the Author” and signed: Lew Theobald, reprinted from the “Daily Journal” of 17 April 1729.] IV. His Satire on Mrs. P-y. v. Mr. Congreve’s fine Epistle on retirement and taste. Address’d to Lord Cobham. [The whole edited by Matthew Concanen, the Elder?] [Another copy.]. 45pp. G. Lawton; T. Osborn; J. Hughes: London, 1732. 8o. [16] A Review of the Excise-Scheme [by William Pulteney, Earl of Bath?]; in answer to a pamphlet [by Matthew Concanen, the Elder?], intitled, The Rise and Fall of the late projected Excise, impartially considered. With some proper hints to the electors of Great Britain. Title [Another copy.] The second edition.. 71pp. Printed by H. Haines, at Mr. Francklin’s: London, 1733. 8o. 71pp. Printed by H. Haines, at Mr. Francklin’s: London, 1733,8o [17] A Second Review of the late Excise Scheme: being a full answer to a scurrilous pamphlet [by Matthew Concanen, the Elder?], entitled, The Rise and Fall of the late projected Excise. To which is added, a word to the freeholders of Great Britain, on the approaching elections. 50pp. Printed for T. Hanes, at R. Franklane’s: London, 1734. 8o. [18] The Rise and Fall of the late projected Excise, impartially consider’d. By a friend to the English constitution. [by Matthew Concanen, the Elder?] Title [Another copy.] MS. Note. [Another copy.] [Another copy.] [Another copy.] Title [Another edition.] The Rise and Fall of the late projected Excise, etc.. 61pp. J. Peele: London, 1733. 8o. George Ewing: Dublin, 1733. 8o. [19] The Speculatist. A collection of letters and essays ... upon various subjects. [by Matthew Concanen, the Elder. Originally contributed to “The London Journal” and “The British Journal.”] Title The second edition. 283pp. Printed by J. Watts, for the Author: London, 1730. 8o. 283pp. J. Walthoe: London, 1732. 8o.

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Notes
Brian McGinn writes of Governor Hunter’s complaints, c.1732, of the intrigues of a clique of Irish lawyers in the Jamaican Assembly [Email to Ed., 13 March 1997]

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