Alice Furlong

?1875-?1946; b. Old Brown Villa, nr. Tallaght, Co. Dublin; dg. John Furlong, sporting journalist; trained as nurse at Dr. Steevens Hospital; contrib. to Irish Monthly at 16; encouraged and assisted in finding publisher by Fr. Matthew Russell; issued Roses and Rue (1899); appeared in Brooke and Rolleston’s anthology, Treasury of Irish Verse (1900 & edns.); issued Tales of Fairy Folk and Queens and Heroes (1907); closely associated on Irish publications with Douglas Hyde whom she helped with the Irish section of Irish Literature (ed. Justin McCarthy, 1904); ceased to publish after the 1916 Rising; her sisters Katherine [d.1894, aetat. 22] and Mary (d. 22 Sept. 1898) also wrote poetry, while Margaret married P. J. McCall; a third sister was called Alice. JMC DBIV DIW DIL

[ top ]

Fiction, Roses and Rue (London: Elkin Mathews 1899); Tales and Fairy Folks: Queens and Heroes (Dublin: Browne & Nolan [1907]); also Lady Peggy: A Guardian of the Poor [serialised in The Weekly Freeman].

Miscellaneous, with Douglas Hyde, ed., “Irish Authors and the Writings”, in Justin McCarthy, ed., Irish Literature (Washington: Catholic University of America; London: P. F. Collier & Son 1904), Vol. 10 [Gaelic section].

[ top ]

A. A. Kelly, Pillars of the House: An Anthology of Verse by Irish Women from 1690 to the Present (Dublin: Wolfhound 1987), gives bio-data: b. Tallaght, Co. Dublin; published poetry at 16 in The Irish Monthly; retold stories from Gaelic literature, collected as Tales of Fairy Folks, Queens and Heroes (Dublin: Browne & Nolan [1907]), 212pp.; poetry collected in Roses and Rue (London: Elkin Mathews 1899).

Also anthologised in S. A. Brooke & T. W. Rolleston, eds., A Treasury of Irish Poetry in the English Tongue (London: Smith Elder & Co.1900); John Cooke, ed., Dublin Book or Irish Verse 1728-1909 (Dublin: Hodges, Figgis 1909); Padraic Gregory, ed., Modern Anglo-Irish Verse (London: David Nutt 1914); A. A. Kelly, ed., Pillars of the House: An Anthology of Verse by Irish Women from 1690 to the Present (Dublin: Wolfhound 1987).

[ top ]

Love: ‘I love you, and I love you, and I love you, O my honey! / It isn’t for your goodly lands, it isn’t for your money; / It isn’t for your father’s cows, you mother’s yellow butter. / The love that’s in my heart for you no words of mine may utter!’ (Quoted in Robert Hogan, ed., Dictionary of Irish Literature [2nd. Edn. 2 vols] (Westport, Conn: Greenwood Press 1996), Vol. 1, p.464.

The Betrayal
  When you were weary, roaming the wide world, over,
I gave my fickle heart to a new lover.
Now they tell me that you are lying dead:
O mountains fall on me and hide my head!

When you lay burning in the throes of fever,
He vowed me love by the willow-margined river:
Death smote you there—here was your trust betrayed,
O darkness, cover me, I am afraid!

Yea, in the hour of your supremest trial,
I laughed with him! The shadows on the dial
Stayed not, aghast at my dread ignorance:
Nor man nor angel looked at me askance.

Under the mountains there is peace abiding,
Darkness shall be pavilion for my hiding,
Tears shall blot out the sin of broken faith,
The lips that falsely kissed, shall kiss but Death.

—Given in Padraic Colum, Anthology of Irish Poetry (1922; rev. edn. 1948) - online.

[ top ]

Cause of death: One source seems to states that she died of cholera as volunteer in George Sigerson’s group in Connemara and is buried in Tallaght with a memorial in Glasnevin. This probably refers to one of her sisters, Katherine (d.1894) or Mary (d. 1898).

[ top ]