[Lady] Augusta Gregory (1852-1932)


Life
[Lady Gregory; née Isabella Augusta Persse;] b. early moments of 15 March 1852, twelfth of 16 children and 7th dg. of Dudley (d. 1878) with his second wife Frances of Roxborough [House; destroyed in 1922], nr. Loughrea, South Co. Galway; her mother was a passionate proselytiser; a high-spirited girl, she experienced religious scruples in adolescence; m. at twenty-eight to Sir W. H. Gregory, then a sixty-three year-old widower, former gov. of Ceylon and Trustee of the National Gallery and MP for Galway (d.1892), 4 March 1880, St. Mathias, Hatch St., Dublin (before rector Canon Wynne); settled in London, where the Gregory’s salon was frequented by Browning, Tennyson, Millais, Henry James, and others; summered at Coole Park [note], nr. Gort, Co. Galway, barony of Kiltartan; a son, Robert, b.1881 - Sir William privately wishing that he were shut up for seven years;
 
shared diplomatic station with Sir William in Alexandria, and during that time conducted a love-affair with Wilfrid Scawen Blunt, 1882-83, writing the poems he later published as “A Woman’s Sonnets”, as if his own; assisted Blunt in the defence of [Ali] Arabi Bey; issued ‘Arabi and His Household’ (Times, 23 Sept. 1882); commenced her diary (1892-1902) on the death of her husband; travelled solo to Inisheer, Aran Islands, and experienced awakening of interest in folklore; collected folktales, often in the Gort workhouse (a scenario rehearsed by Sean O’Faolain in “The End of the Record”) and learnt Irish; the Hiberno-English dialect of her own Galway locality; anonymously published an anti-Home Rule pamphlet entitled Home Ruin (1893); met W. B. Yeats, 1896, and received a brief visit at Coole; commenced collecting folk-lore in Kiltartan region with W. B. Yeats, 1896; established Irish class at Coole schoolhouse; met Douglas Hyde, 1897; first of twenty summers spent by Yeats at Coole, 1897;
 
planned a Celtic Theatre with Edward Martyn and Yeats at Durras [var. Dorcas] House, property of Count de Basterot, and Coole Park, 1897 [though 1898 in her own account]; fnd. Irish Literary Theatre, 1899-1901, later Abbey Theatre Company, of which she held the patent (dated 20 Aug. 1904) and which she directed with Yeats and Synge; edited nationalist essays by Yeats, AE, D. P. Moran, George Moore, Douglas Hyde, and Standish James O’Grady as Ideals in Ireland (1901), gathered from journals incl. chiefly New Ireland Review and the Leader; made a translation of the Ulster saga as Cuchulain of Muirthemne, with a preface by W. B. Yeats (1902), dedicated ‘to the people of Kiltartan’, and using Kiltartanese Hiberno-English dialect (‘plain and simple words, in the same way my old nurse used to be telling me stories from the Irish long ago, and I a child at Roxborough’); described prefatorily by Yeats as ‘the best [book] that has come out of Ireland in my time’ - a phrase that Joyce later ridiculed in the “Telemachiad” episode of Ulysses (1922);
 
her translation of Casadh an tSugain (1901) as The Twisting of the Rope appeared in Samhain, No. 1 (1901); issued Poets and Dreamers (1903), containing translations of Raftery, folk-tales, and translations of short plays by Hyde, and greeted as ‘the greatest book to come out of Ireland in our time’ by Yeats in a review in Bookman (May 1903), a phrase ridiculed by Joyce in Ulysses; wrote letter with George Russell, Yeats, and others, to Freeman’s Journal and Irish Times seeking support for Hugh Lane Collection (Dec.-Jan. 1904); issued Gods and Fighting Men (1904), based on mythological cycle and cycle of the kings; issued A Book of Saints and Wonders (1906) which narrates in Kiltartanese lore of St. Brigit, St. Patrick, St. Colum Cille, the voyages of Maeldune and Brendan, the Old Woman of Beare, and ‘Great Wonders of the Olden Time’, sourced in Irish folk-tales and learned journals but also from local people around Coole;
 
she began writing plays by helping Yeats with the peasant dialogue of his plays and in effect co-authoring Cathleen Ni Houlihan, The Pot of Broth (3 Oct. 1902), and Where There is Nothing, et al.; her first play, Twenty Five (1903), was produced with Yeats’s The Hour-Glass; she opened the Abbey Theatre - successor to the Irish Literary Theatre - with Spreading the News (28 Dec. 1904), performed along with Yeats’s On Baile Strand; supported Synge against Catholic-nationalist opposition to his Playboy of the Western World (1907), but did not admire it as Yeats did;wrote nineteen original plays and seven translations for the Abbey, 1904-1912, incl. several examples of ‘Kiltartan Molière’ such as The Doctor in Spite of Himself (1906), The Rogueries of Scapin (1908), The Miser (1909), and The Would-Be Gentleman (1923);
 
her plays in the vein of ‘folk history’ incl. Kincora (Abbey Th., 25 March 1905), on Brian Boru; The White Cockade (1905); The Canavans (1906), set in Elizabethan times; and The Rising of the Moon (1907), in which a patriotic RIC-man lets a Fenian escape from the guarded quayside, written with Hyde; also with Hyde, The Poorhouse (3 April 1907), later called The Workhouse Ward (1908), in which the scolding paupers were a symbol of Ireland, acc. Lady Gregory’s notes; issued Dervorgilla (1907), on the wife of Demot MacMurrough; also The Deliverer (1911), an allegory of Home Rule set in Egypt; also The Image (1909) and Damer’s Gold (1912); MacDonough’s Wife (1912), written aboard ship en route to America;
 
starts collecting notebook materials from Irish peasantry using ‘leisure, patience, reverence and a good memory’ (Visions and Beliefs in the West of Ireland, p.15); and Grania (1911), all later collected as Irish Folk History Plays (1912); her later comedies incl. Hyacinth Halvey (Feb. 1906) which provides comment, acc. to herself, on the tendency for reputations in Ireland to be ‘built up or destroyed by a password or an emotion, rather than by experience and deliberation’; published The Kiltartan History Book (1909), The Kiltartan Wonder Book (1910); produced Shaw’s Shewing-Up of Blanco Posnet in defiance of Dublin Castle, 1909;
 
birth of Richard Graham Gregory, at Coole, to Robert and Margaret, 1909; a 20 p.c. rent reduction application made to the Land Commissioner, Gerald Fitzgerald, was allowed to Coole Park fifteen tenants, 30 July 1909, occasioning Yeats’s poem [“Upon a House Shaken by the Land Agitation”]; called ‘Guiding Genius’ of Abbey by the New York Dramatic Mirror, during an American tour 1911-12; had a brief sexual affair with John Quinn, in New York, 1912; issued a history of the national theatre as Our Irish Theatre (1913); threatened to sue George Moore for references to her mother as a prosletyser ‘for the religion of the extreme Irish evangelical school’ in Vale (1914); travelled to America on tour again, 1915; underwent mastectomy under local anaesthetic;
 
wrote Shanwalla (1915), a ghost story staged by Hugh Lane; exempted by IRA from big-house attacks; issued Visions and Beliefs in the West of Ireland, 2 vols. (1920), which incl. two essays by W. B. Yeats on the material included in it; objected to Black and Tan brutality in Co. Galway in anonymous articles published in The Nation, Oct. 1920-Jan. 1921; establish Irish PEN, a branch of the world-wide writers’ association, 1921; her monologue, An Old Woman Remembers (1923), recited by Maire O’Neill in the Abbey; The Story Brought By Brigid (Abbey 1923), a moving play; late plays incl. Sancha’s Master (1927) and Dave (1927); wrote the history of her home in Coole (1931); sold Coole Park to Forestry Commission, 1927, receiving life tenancy at lease-back of £100 p.a.; took title role in Cathleen Ni Houlihan for three performances of the play shortly after her 67th birthday (18-21 March 1919), saying, ‘After all, what is needed but an old hag and a voice’;
 
professed herself ‘with the Nationalists all through - more than they know or my dearest realise’; d. small hours of 22-23 May; bur. with her sister Arabella, New Cemetery, Galway; Coole Park sold and stripped of lead, being pulled down in 1941 [err. 1942]; an ‘Autograph Tree’ preserves initials of Yeats, Synge, Russell, Hyde, Moore, O’Casey, Shaw, and many others (though of women only Lady Sackville and Countess Cromartie); most of her works were published in New York by Putnam a little in advance of the London edns. from the English company of the same name, the latter keeping her plays in print to the mid 1960s; the Berg Collection at the New York Public Library acquired most of her papers, incl. all but one vols. of her diaries (the first being in Emory), from the family in 1964; remaining stock of titles, primarily plays, held by her London publisher purchased by Colin Smythe in 1965;
 
Colin Smythe’s bibliographical collection of c.150 vols. incl. first edns. with numerous other issues and impressions sold to the UCG library, 1975-76; there is portrait in oil by John Butler Yeats in the National Gallery of Ireland and another dated 1905 by Antonio Mancini in the Municipal Gallery; George Moore called Lady Gregory’s Kiltartanese ‘a Kiltartan three-hole whistle’; Synge told her, ‘Cuchulainn is still part of my daily bread’; Gogarty asserted, ‘the perpetual presentation of her plays nearly ruined the Abbey’; there is a portrait of 1908 by Antonio Mancini in the Municipal Gallery of Ireland; Lady Gregory was the subject of “Fire in the Blood” with Derbhle Crotty as narrator in the first of four films on the Irish Literary Revival produced by RTÉ1 (Mon. 29 Feb. 2016). JMC ODNB NCBE IF DIW DIB DIH DIL OCEL KUN FDA KUN OCIL FDA

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Works
Plays (selected among 40 others)
  • (Spreading the News (Dublin: Maunsel 1904; London & NY: Putnam 1909);
  • Kincora: A Play in Three Acts [Vol. II of Abbey Ser.; 2nd edn.] (Dublin: Maunsel 1905);
  • The Rising of the Moon (Abbey 1907); The Workhouse Ward (Abbey 1908);
  • Hyacinth Halvey (NY: Quinn 1906; Dublin: Maunsel 1910);
  • The Image: A Play in Three Acts (Dublin: Maunsel 1910);
  • Irish Folk History Plays [First Series] (London & NY: Putnam 1912);
  • Irish Folk History Plays [Second Series] (London & NY: Putnam 1912);
  • McDonough’s Wife [first pub.] in New Irish Comedies (NY & London 1913);
  • The Image and Other Plays (London & NY: Putnam 1922);
  • The Dragon: A Play in Three Acts (London & NY: Putnam 1920; Talbot 1920);
  • The Story Brought by Brigit: A Passion Play in Three Acts (London & NY: Putnam 1924).

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Prose
  • Arabi and His Household (priv. 1882) [on Arabi Bey, one of the colonels in revolt];
  • Over the River (priv. 1887), pamphlet for poor South London parish of St. Stephen’s, Southwark [vide ‘Among the Poor’ in Seventy Years, autobiography];
  • A Phantom’s Pilgrimage, or Home Ruin (London: Ridgeway 1893) [anon. pamphlet against Gladstone’s 2nd Home Rule Bill];
  • Cuchulain of Muirthemne: The Story of the Men of the Red Branch of Ulster [... &c.] (London: John Murray 1902) [see under Mythological writings, infra.]
  • Poets and Dreamers: Studies and Translations from the Irish (London: Murray; Dublin: Hodges & Figgis 1903), and Do. [rep. edn.] (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe 1974) [see details];
  • A Book of Saints and Wonders, put down here by Lady Gregory, According to the Old Writings and the Memory of the People of Ireland (Dublin: Dun Emer Press 1906), and Do., enl. edn. (London: John Murray; NY: Scribners 1907), [200 copies], and Do. (rep. 1908);
  • Seven Short Plays (Dublin: Maunsel 1909), ded. to W. B. Yeats;
  • The Kiltartan History Book (Dublin: Maunsel 1909), 4 ills. by Robert Gregory; Do. [another edn.] (1923);
  • Kiltartan Poetry Book: Translations from the Irish (London & NY: G. P. Putnam 1919),and Do. (NY: Knickerbocker Press 1919) [available at Google Books online; accessed 28.10.2010];
  • A Book of Saints and Wonders (Dundrum: Dun Emer 1906, enl. 1907);
  • Our Irish Theatre: A Chapter of Autobiography (NY: G. P. Putnam 1913; London: G. P. Putnam 1914)., pb.; Do. (NY: Knickerbocker Press 1914), v, 319pp.; Do. [rep. edn.] (London: Capricorn Books 1965); Do., foreword by Roger McHugh (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe; NY: OUP 1972);
  • Visions and Beliefs in the West of Ireland (London: G. P. Putnam 1920), with notes by Yeats; Do. [rep. edn.] (Colin Smythe 1970);
  • Hugh Lane’s Life and Achievement, with some account of the Dublin Galleries (London: John Murray 1921) [Jan. 1921], ill.;
  • Case for the Return of Sir Hugh Lane’s Pictures to Dublin (Dublin: Talbot Press 1926), 48pp., ill. [pl., port. facs.] [22.5cm];
  • Edward Malins, ed. & intro., Lady Gregory, Coole (Dublin: Cuala Press 1931) [ltd. 250 copies], 72pp.; Do., completed from the manuscript and edited by Colin Smythe, with a foreword by Edward Malins [Dolmen Edns. 10] (Dolmen 1971), 105pp. [ltd. edn. 1,050], 108pp. [2 extra chaps. adding to 3, 4 & 5 prev. printed in 1931; p.27-28]; and Do., with “Coole Park”, a poem by W. B. Yeats]. [facs. of 1931 edn.] (Shannon: IUP 1971), [4], 51pp.
  • Seventy Years: Being the Autobiography of Lady Gregory (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe 1974, 1976), xvi, 583pp.
 
Mythological writings
  • Cuchulain of Muirthemne: The Story of the Men of the Red Branch of Ulster arranged and put into English by Lady Gregory, with a pref. by W. B. Yeats (London: John Murray 1902) [Yeats Pref. listed as Wade 256 [var. 258], Do. [another edn.] (London: John Murray 1934), xvii, 360pp.; and Do. [another edition, with Gods and Fighting Men] (London: Slaney Press [Reed Consumer Press] 1994), 550pp., pp.[327]-550 - see details]; Do., [5th edn.], [with a foreword by Daniel Murphy [Coole Edition - 2 Edition] (Oxford & NY: OUP 1970), 272pp., ill. [port.], 23 cm.[ top ]
  • Gods and Fighting Men: The Story of the Tuatha de Danaan and of the Fianna of Ireland, Preface by W. B. Yeats (London: Murray 1904), 446pp. [see reprints as Irish Myths and Legends, 1998, &c. - infra]; another edn. [1910].
Edited collections
  • Ed., Ideals in Ireland: A Collection of Essays Written by AE and Others (London: At the Unicorn VII Cecil Court 1901) [contribs.: AE [George Russell] (“Nationality and imperialism”), D. P. Moran (“The Battle of Two Civilizations”, George Moore (“Literature and the Irish Language”), Douglas Hyde ( ”What Ireland is Asking For”), Hyde (“The Return of the Fenians”, Standish J. O’Grady (“The Great Enchantment”), W. B. Yeats (“The Literary Movement in Ireland”), and Yeats (“A postscript”) - see note].
Gregory Papers
  • Ed., Sir William Gregory, KCMG, formerly member of Parliament and sometime Governor of Ceylon: An Autobiography (London: John Murray 1894), vii, 407pp., ill. [photo port. of Sir William];
  • Ed., Mr Gregory’s Letter-Box 1813-30 [cover 1835] (London: Smith Elder & Co. 1898) [acq. by John Murray];
Journals
  • Lennox Robinson, ed., Lady Gregory’s Journals 1916-30 (London: Putnam 1946; NY: Macmillan 1947), 344pp. [Index, 341ff.
  • Daniel J. Murphy, ed., Lady Gregory’s Journals Vol. I [Journal Books 1-29] (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe; NY: OUP 1978);
  • Daniel J. Murphy, ed., Lady Gregory’s Journals, Vol. II [Journal Books 30-44] (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe; NY: OUP 1987);
  • James Pethica, ed., Lady Gregory’s Diaries 1892-1902 [with additional sporadic entries 1903-1909 ](Gerrards Cross Colin Smythe 1995), 346pp., ills. [4pp. pls.]

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Sundry articles
  • ‘Ireland, Real and Ideal’, in Nineteenth Century, 44 (Nov. 1898), cp.70-75;
  • ‘The Felons on Our Land’, in Cornhill Magazine, 47 (1900), pp.633-34.

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Selections & anthologies
  • Selected Plays of Lady Gregory, chosen & introduced by Elizabeth Coxhead; foreword by Sean O’Casey [1962] (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe 1975).
  • Selected Plays of Lady Gregory, chosen and with an introduction by Mary FitzGerald; with a foreword by Sean O’Casey (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe 1983), 377pp. [selected checklist compiled by Colin Smythe; Bibliography, pp.373-77].
  • Lucy McDiarmid & Maureen Waters, Lady Gregory: Selected Writings (Harmondsworth: Penguin 1995), 573pp.; [incl. text of Kathleen Ni Houlihan, jointly attrib. to Yeats and Lady Gregory, and Grania, her proto-feminist play.
  • Melosina Lenox-Conyngham, ed., Diaries of Ireland from Ludolf von Münchausen to Lady Gregory (Dublin: Lilliput Press 1998), 256pp. [excerpts].

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Collected editions
Colin Smythe & T. R. Henn, gen. eds., The Coole Edition of Lady Gregory’s Writings (1970-82):
  • Visions and Beliefs in the West of Ireland, with a foreword by Elizabeth Coxhead [Coole Edition 1] (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe 1970), 365pp. [Foreword pp.5-8; frontispiece half-plate b&w reps. of “Thoor Ballylee” and “Coole Lake” by Robert Gregory].
  • Cuchulain of Muirthemne: The Story of the Men of the Red Branch of Ulster, arranged and put into English by Lady Gregory; with a preface by W. B. Yeats and a foreword by Elizabeth Coxhead [Coole Edition 2] (Gerrards Cross: Colins Smythe 1970, 1973), 272pp. [1st edn. 1902; prev. edn. 1911];
  • Gods and Fighting Men: The Story of the Tuatha na Danaan and the Fianna of Ireland, arranged and put into English by Lady Gregory; with a preface by W. B. Yeats and a foreword by Daniel Murphy [Coole Edition 3] (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe 1970, 1976),
  • Our Irish Theatre: A Chapter of Autobiograpy, with a foreword by Roger McHugh [Coole Edition 4 (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe 1972), 279, [19]pp.; [orig. 1913]
  • The Collected Plays, with a foreword by Ann Saddlemeyer [Coole Edition 5-8] (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe 1970): Comedies [Vol. I, 304pp.,]; Tragedies and Tragic Comedies [Vol. II, 362pp.]; Wonder and Supernatural [Vol. III, 434pp.]; Translations, Adaptions and Collaborations [Vol. IV, 376pp.] & Do., in 2 vols. (NY: OUP 1970) [Gerrards Cross pb. edn. 1979].
  • The Kiltartan Books Comprising The Kiltartan Poetry History and Wonder Books by Lady Gregory, ill. by Robert and Margaret Gregory, with a foreword by Padraic Colum [Coole Edition 9] (Gerrards Cross 1971), 213pp. [Foreword, pp.5-8; frontispiece being Epstein’s head of Lady Gregory, Municipal Gallery of Modern Art, Dublin];
  • Poets and Dreamers: Studies and Translations from the Irish by Lady Gregory Including Nine Plays of Douglas Hyde, with a foreword by T. R. Henn [Coole Edition 10] (Gerrards Cross 1974), 286pp. [Frontispiece photo. of Lady Gregory taken by Chancellor of Dublin, rep. in a NY newspaper at time of first Abbey tour of USA.]
  • The Journals: Volume One - Books One to Twenty-six (10 October 1916-24 Feb. 1925), edited by Daniel J. Murphy [Coole Edition 11] (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe 1978), 707pp. [Notes, p.630ff.; Index, p.677ff.]
  • The Journals, Volume Two [Books Thirty to Forty-four] [Coole Edition 12] (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe; NY: OUP 1987);
  • Seventy Years: Being the Autobiography of Lady Gregory [Coole Edition 13] (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe 1974), xvi, 583pp., ill. [16pp. of pls.; ports].
 

[Hors de sèrie]: A Book of Saints and Wonders put down here by Lady Gregory according to the old writings and the memory of the people of Ireland; with illustrations by Margaret Gregory and a foreword by Edward Malins [3rd edn.] (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe 1971), 116pp., ill. 2 leaves of pls., ports].

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Selected Editions
  • Elizabeth Coxhead, ed., Lady Gregory: Selected Plays, foreword by Sean O’Casey (London & NY: Putnam; [NY:] Hill & Wang 1962), and Do. [facs. edn.] (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe 1975), 270pp. [contains 9 plays with extracts from three prose works];
  • Mary Fitzgerald, sel. & intro., Selected Plays of Lady Gregory with foreword Sean O’Casey (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe; Washington: Catholic UP 1983), 378pp. [contains “Travelling Man”; “Gaol Gate”; “Spreading the News”; “Kincora”; “Hyacinth Halvey”; “Doctor in Spite of Himself”; “Rising of the Moon”; “Dervorgilla”; “The Workhouse Ward”; “Grania”; “The Golden Apple”; “Story Brought by Brigit”; “Dave Fitzgerald”], and Do. [enl. edn.] (Gerrards Cross 1993) [with add. bibliography];
  • Lucy McDiarmid and Maureen Waters, eds., Selected Writings of Lady Gregory (Harmondsworth: Penguin 1995) [unambiguously assigning Kathleen ni Houlihan to Lady Gregory]; James Pethica, ed., Lady Gregory’s Diaries 1892-1902 (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe 1996), 38pp., 346pp., with 16pp. ills.
Reprint editions
  • Lady Gregory, Irish Myths and Legends [orig. as Gods and Fighting Men, 1904] (Philadelphia: Running Press; London: Creative Umbrella 1998), 446pp.; Do. [another imp.?] (Philadelphia: Courage Press 1998), 446pp.; Do., with an introduction by Colum Tóibín (Folio Society Edn. 2011), 380pp., ill. [12 col. ills. by Jillian Tamaki; sewn slip-case quarter-bound in brown leather].

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Correspondence
  • Ann Saddlemyer, sel. & ed., Some Letters of John M. Synge to Lady Gregory and W. B. Yeats (Dublin: Cuala Press 1971), vii, 85pp. [ltd. edn. of 500].
    Ann Saddlemyer, sel. & ed., Theatre Business; The Correspondence of the First Abbey Directors (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe 1982), 330pp.
  • Dan H. Laurence & Nicholas Grene, eds., Shaw, Lady Gregory and the Abbey: A Correspondence and a Record (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe 1993), xliii, 211pp., ill.

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See also Letters of W. B. Yeats (ed. John Kelly, et al.)


Internet resources
“The Fate of the Children of Lir” and “Oisin and Patrick” (trans. Lady Gregory), at “Irish Resources”, ed. Michael Sundermeier, Creighton University [link].

Bibiliographical details

Seven Short Plays (Dublin: Maunsel 1909), 211, [5]pp. Contents: “Spreading the News” [1] “Hyacinth Halvey” [31]; “The Rising of the Moon” [79]; “The Jackdaw” [97]; The Travelling Man” [163]; “The Gaol Gate” [181]; Music for Songs in the plays [195]; Notes [204]; ded. to W. B. Yeats, ‘good praiser, wholesome dispraiser, heavy-handed judge, open-handed helper of us all [because] you like them and because you have taught me my trade’, 10 May 1909.

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Ideals in Ireland, ed. Lady Gregory (London: At the Unicorn 1901), 107pp. - comprising AE [George Russell], ‘Nationality and Imperialism’; D. P. Moran, ‘The Battle of Two Civilizations’; Douglas Hyde, ‘The Return of the Fenians’; George Moore, ‘Literature and Irish Language’; Hyde, ‘What is Ireland Asking For’; Standish O’Grady, ‘The Great Enchantment’; W. B. Yeats, ‘The Literary Movement in Ireland (A Postscript)’. Essay taken from New Ireland Review, All Ireland Review, North American Review, An Claidheamh Soluis, and The Leader. [See rep. edn.: New York : Lemma Publishing Corporation, 1973, 107pp.]

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Cuchulain of Muirthemne: The History of the Men of the Red Branch of Ulster, arranged and put into English by Lady Gregory, with a Preface by W. B. Yeats [1902]; rep. [with Gods and Fighting Men ] as The Complete Irish Mythology (London: The Slaney Press [Reed Consumer Books] 1995), 550pp. CONTENTS: Birth of Cuchulain [339]; Boy Deeds of Cuchulain [342]; The Courting of Emer [350]; Bricriu’s Feast, and the War of Words of the Women of Ulster [366]; The Championship of Ulster [374]; The High King of Ireland [385]; Fate of the Children of Usnach [398]; The Dream of Angus [420]; Cruachan [423]; The Wedding of Maine Morgor [429]; The War for the Bull of Cuailgne [439]; The Awakening of Ulster [479]; The Two Bulls [493]. Epigraph: “Bheirim an mhóid do bheir mo mhuinntir”, ar Cúchulain, “go mbéidh tracht agus iomrádh fós ar mo gníomharthaibh-se ameasg na n-árd-gníomh do rinne na gairgidhigh is tréine. “I swear by the oath of my people”, said Cuchulain, “I will make my doings be spoken of among the great doings of heroes in their strength”. Dedication of the Irish Edition to the People of Kiltartan: ‘My Dear Friends, / When I began to gather these stories together, it is of you I was thinking, that you would like, to have them and to be reading them. For although you have not to go far to get stories of Finn and Goll and Oisin from any old person in the place, there is very little of the history of Cuchulain and his friends left in the memory of the people, but only that they were brave men and good fighters, and that Deirdre was beautiful. / When I went looking for the stories in the old writings, I found that the Irish in them is too hard for any person to read that has not made a long study of it. Some scholars have worked well at them, Irishmen and Germans and Frenchmen, but they have printed them in the old cramped Irish, with translations into German and French or English, and these are not easy for you to get, or to understand, and the stories themselves are confused, every one giving a different account from the others in some small thing, the way there is not much pleasure in reading them. It is what 1 have tried to do, to take the best of the stories, or whatever part of each will fit best to one another, and in that way give a fair account of Chuchulain’s life and death. I left out a good deal I thought you would not care about for one reason or another, but I put in nothing of my own that could he helped, only a sentence or two now and again to link the different parts together. I have told the whole story in plain and simple words, in the same way my old nurse Mary Sheridan [330] used to be telling stories from the Irish long ago, and I a child at Roxborough. / And indeed if there was more respect for Irish things among the learned men that live in the college at Dublin, where so many of these old writings are stored, this work would not have been left to a woman of the house, that has to be minding the place, and listening to complaints, and dividing the share of food. / My friend and your friend the Craoibhin Aoibhin [Douglas Hyde] has put Irish of today on some of these stories that I have set in order, for I am sure you will like to have the history of the heroes of Ireland told in the language of Ireland. And I am very glad to have something that is worth offering you, for you have been very kind to me ever since I came over to you from Kilchrist, two and twenty years ago. / Augusta Gregory - March 1902.’ (For Preface, see under W. B. Yeats, in Library, “Irish Classics”, infra; for remarks from Notes, see under Quotations [infra]; quotations from see also under Robert Atkinson for remarks in author’s afterword [infra].

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Gods and Fighting Men: The Story of the Tuatha de Danaan and of the Fianna of Ireland, arranged and put into English by Lady Gregory, with a Preface by W. B. Yeats [1904]; rep. [with Cuchulain of Muirthemne ] as The Complete Irish Mythology (London: The Slaney Press] [Reed Consumer Books] 1995), 550pp., [2] 1-332. ‘Dedication to the members of the Irish literary society of New York: ‘My Friends, those I know and those I do not know, 1 am glad in the year of the birth of your Society to have this book to offer you. / It has given great courage to many workers here - working to build up broken walls - to know you have such friendly thoughts of them in your minds. A few of you have already come to see us, and we begin to hope that one day the steamers across the Atlantic will not go out full, but come back full, until some of you find your real home is here, and say as some of us say, like Finn to the woman of enchantments - / “Ní fhagfamaois á dtír féin dá bhfagmaois an domhan mór mar dhuithche agus Tír-na-na-nÓg leis / We would not give up our own country - Ireland - if we were to get the whole world as an estate, and the Country of the Young along with it.” Augusta Gregory.’ CONTENTS: PART [1 - The Gods: Book I - The Coming of the Tuatha de Danaan . I. The Fight with the Firbolgs [17]; II. The Reign of Bres [21]; Book II - Lugh of the Long Hand . I. The Coming of Lugh [26]; II. The Sons of Tuireann [31]; III. The Great Battle of Magh Tuireadh [47]; IV. The Hidden House of Lugh [54]; Book III - The Coming of the Gael . I. The Landing [56]; II. The Battle of Tailltin [59]; Book IV - The Ever-Living Living Ones . I Bodb Dearg [61]; II. The Dagda [64]; III. Angus Og [66]; IV. The Morrigu [68]; V. Aine [69]; V1. Aoibhell [70]; VII. Midhir and Etain [71]; VIII. Manannan [78]; IX. Manannan at play [80]; X. His Call to Bran [84]; XI. His Three Calls to Cormac [87]; XII. Cliodna’s Wave [91]; XIII. His Call to Connla [92]; XIV. Tadg in Manannan’s Islands [94]; XV Laegaire in the Happy Plain [99]; Book V - The Fate of The Children of Lir [103]; PART II - THE FIANNA. Book I - Finn, Son of Cumbal . I. The Coming of Finn [117]; II. Finn’s Household [123]; III. Birth of Bran [125]; IV. Oisin’s Mother [126]; V. The Rest Men of the Fianna [129]; Book II - Finn’s Helpers . I. The Lad of the Skins [135]; II. Black, Brown, and Grey [138]; III. The Hound [140]; IV. Red Ridge [145]; Book III - The Battle of the White Strand . I. The Enemies of Ireland [146]; II. Cael and Credhe [147]; III. Conn Crither [149]; IV. Glas, Son of Dremen [150]; V. The Help of the Men of Dea [151]; VI. The March of the Fianna [153]; VII. The First Fighters [154]; VIII. The King of Ulster’s Son [157]; IX. The High King’s Son [159]; X. The King of Lochlann and his Sons [161]; XI. Labran’s journey [163]; XII The Great Fight [165]; XIII Credhe’s Lament [170]. Book IV - Huntings and Enchantments . I. The King of Britain’s Son [172]; II. The Cave of Ceiscoran [174]; III. Donn, Son of Midhir [175]; IV. The Hospitality of Cuanna’s House [181]; V. Cat-Heads and Dog-Heads [183]; VI. Lomna’s Head [185]; VII. Ilbrec of Ess Ruadh [186]; VIII. The Cave of Cruachan [192]; IX. The Wedding at Ceann Slieve [194]; X. The Shadowy One [199]; XI Finn’s Madness [100]; XII The Red Woman [101]; XIII. Finn and the Phantoms [204]; XIV. The Pigs of Angus [206]; XV The Hunt of Slieve Cuilinn [208]. Book V - Oisin’s Children [211]. Book VI - Diarmuid . I Birth of Diarmuid [215]; II. How Diarmuid got his Love-Spot [216]; III. The Daughter of King Under-Wave [218]; IV. The Hard Servant [223]; V. The House of the Quicken Trees [130]. Book VII - Diarmuid and Grania . I. The Flight from Teamhair [232]; II. The Pursuit [236]; III. The Green Champions [140]; IV. The Wood of Dubhros [246]; V. The Quarrel [254]; VI. The Wanderers [256]; VII. Fighting and Peace [258]; VIII. The Boar of Beinn Gulbain [260]. Book VIII - Cnoc-an-Air . I. Tailc, Son of Treon [268]; II. Meargach’s Wife [270]; III. Ailne’s Revenge [274]. Book IX - The Wearing Away of the Fianna . I. The Quarrel with the Sons of Morna [279]; II. Death of Goll [283]; III. The Battle of Gabhra [284]; Book X - The End of the Fianna . I. Death of Bran [288]; II. The Call of Oisin [288]; III. The Last of the Great Men [290]. Book XI - Oisin and Patrick. I. Oisin’s Story [293]; II. Oisin in Patrick’s House [296]; III. The Arguments [298]; IV. Oisin’s Laments [305]. Notes, viz., I. An Apology [309]; II. The Age and Origin of the Stories of the Fianna [310]; III. The Authorities [Part One: Books One, Two, and Tree; Book Four; Part Two: The Fianna]; IV: Pronunciation [318-24; End]. (For Preface by Yeats - see in RICORSO Library > Authors > “Irish Classics” > W. B. Yeats [infra].)

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Poets and Dreamers (Dublin: Hodges & Figgis 1903), and Do. [rep. edn., with foreword by T. R. Henn; Coole Edn., Vol. 11] (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe 1974), 287pp. CONTENTS - Raftery; West Irish ballads; Jacobite ballads; An Craoibhin’s poems; Boer ballads in Ireland; A sorrowful lament for Ireland; Mountain theology; Herb-healing; The wandering tribe; Workhouse dreams; On the edge of the world; An Craoibhin’s [i.e., Douglas Hyde’s] plays.

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Criticism
  • W. B. Yeats, ‘Lady Gregory’s Translations’, in The Cutting of the Agate (NY: Macmillan 1912; London: Macmillan 1919) [q.pp.].
  • Andrew E. Malone [on Lady Gregory], in Dublin Magazine (Jan-March 1933) [q.pp.].
  • Vere R. T. Gregory, The House of Gregory: The Gregory Family in Ireland, foreword by T. U. Sadleir [Ulster King of Arms] (Dublin: Browne & Nolan 1943), 210pp., ills.
  • Hazard Adams, Lady Gregory (Lewisburg: Bucknell UP 1973) [q.pp.].
  • Elizabeth Coxhead, Lady Gregory: A Literary Portrait (NY: Harcourt, Brace & World 1961); Do., [rev. edn.] (London: Secker & Warburg 1966), ill..
  • Mary Lou Kohfeldt, Lady Gregory: The Woman Behind the Irish Renaissance (London: André Deutsch; NY: Atheneum 1985).
  • Ann Saddlemyer, ‘Augusta Gregory, Irish Nationalist’, in Joseph Ronsley, ed., Myth and Reality in Irish Literature (Ontario 1977).
  • Ann Saddlemyer, In Defence of Lady Gregory, Playwright (Dublin: Dolmen Press 1966) [q.pp.] .
  • Kohfeldt, Lady Gregory, The [Fine] Woman Behind the Irish Renaissance (London 1984 NY: Atheneum 1985).
  • Ann Saddlemyer and Colin Smythe, eds., Lady Gregory: Fifty Years After (Gerrards Cross 1987) [include. Gabriel Fallon, ‘Fragments of Memory’, pp.30-34 ; Elizabeth Longford, ‘Lady Gregory and Wilfrid Scawen Blunt’, pp.85-97; John Kelly, ‘“Friendship is All the House I Have”: Lady Gregory and W. B. Yeats’, pp.179ff.; Mary Fitzgerald, ‘Four French Comedies: Lady Gregory’s Translations of Molière’, pp.277-90 ; Smythe, ‘Lady Gregory’s Contribution to Periodicals: A Checklist’, et al.].
  • George F. Butler, ‘The Hero’s Metamorphosis in Lady Gregory’s Cuchulain of Muirthemne: Scholarship and Popularisation’, in Éire-Ireland, 22, 4 (Winter 1987), pp.36-46.
  • A. N. Jeffares, W. B. Yeats: A New Biography (1988).
  • E. H. Mikhail, Lady Gregory, An Annotated Bibliography of Criticism (NY: Whitston 1982).
  • Mikhail, Lady Gregory: Interviews and Recollections (NJ: Rowman & Littlefield 1977).
  • Saddlemyer, In Defence of Lady Gregory, Playwright (Chester Springs PA: Chester Springs: Dufour Edns. 1966).
  • James F. Knapp, ‘History against Myth, Lady Gregory and Cultural Discourse’, in Éire-Ireland, 22, 3 (Fall 1987), pp.30-42.
  • Mary Helen Thuente, ‘Lady Gregory and the Book of the People’, in Éire-Ireland 15, 1 (Spring 1980), pp.89-99.
  • James Pethica, ‘“Our Kathleen”: Yeats’s Collaboration with Lady Gregory in the Writing of Cathleen ni Houlihan’, in Warwick Gould., ed., Yeats Annual, 6 (London: Macmillan 1988), pp.3-31.
  • John Quinn, ‘Lady Gregory and the Abbey Theatre’, in The Abbey Theatre: Interviews and Recollections (London: Macmillan 1988), pp.104-07.
  • Edward A. Kopper, Lady Gregory: A Review of Criticism [Mod. Irish Literature Monograph Series] (1991).
  • James F. Knapp, ‘Irish Primitivism and Imperial Discourse: Lady Gregory’s Peasantry’, in Macropolitics of Nineteenth Century Literature: Nationalism, Exoticism, Imperialism (Pennsylvania UP 1991), pp.286-301.
  • Romine Scott, ‘Lady Gregory and the Language of Transgression’, in Arkansas Quarterly, 2 (1993), pp.109-23.
  • Lucy McDiarmid, ‘Augusta Gregory, Bernard Shaw, and the Shewing-Up of Dublin Castle’, in PMLA, 109 (1994), pp.26-44.
  • Declan Kiberd, ‘Lady Gregory and the Empire Boys’, in Inventing Ireland: The Literature of the Modern Nation (London: Jonathan Cape 1995), pp.83-95.
  • Mary Lowe-Evans, ‘Hyacinth and the Wise Man: Lady Gregory’s Comic Enterprise’, in Theresa O’Connor, The Comic Tradition in Irish Women Writers (Florida UP 1996), pp.40-55.
  • Tramble T. Turner, ‘Lady Isabelle Augusta Persse Gregory ’ in Bernice Schrank & William Demastes, ed., Irish Playwrights, 1880-1995: A Research and Production Sourcebook (CT: Greenwood Press 1997), pp.108-23.
  • Selina Guinness, ‘Visions and Beliefs in the West of Ireland: Irish Folklore and British Anthropology’, in Irish Studies Review (April 1998), pp.37-46.
  • Patrica Lysaght, ‘Perspectives on Narrative Commonication and Gender: Lady Augusta Gregory’s Visions and Beliefs in the West of Ireland (1920)’, in Fabula, 39 (1998), 256-76pp.
  • Anne Fogarty, ‘A Woman of the House: Gender and Nationalism in the Writings of Augusta Gregory’, in Border Crossings: Irish Women Writers and National Identities, ed. Kathryn Kirkpatrick (Dublin: Wolfhound Press; Alabama UP 2000), [Chap. 5].
  • Seán & Lois Tobin, eds., Lady Gregory Autumn Gatherings: Reflections at Coole (Galway [2001]), 218pp. [contribs. incl. Katie Donovan, John Quinn, Lorna Reynolds, Bruce Arnold, Declan Kiberd and Catriona Clutterbuck].
  • Colm Tóibín, Lady Gregory’s Toothbrush (Lilliput Press 2002), 127pp.
  • Declan Kiberd, ‘Augusta Gregory’s Cuchulain: The Rebirth of the Hero’, in Irish Classics (London: Granta 2000), pp.399-419.
  • James Pethica, ‘Lady Gregory’s Abbey Theatre Drama: Ireland Real and Ideal’, in The Cambridge Companion to Twentieth-century Irish Drama, ed. Shaun Richards (Cambridge UP 2003) [Chap. 5.]
  • Irish University Review [“Lady Gregory” Special Issue], 34, 1 (Spring/Summer 2004) [infra].
  • Judith Hill, Lady Gregory: An Irish Life (Sutton Publ. 2005), 432pp,, ill. [+8pp. photos].
  • Paul Murphy, ‘Woman as Fantasy Object in Lady Gregory’s Historical Tragedies’, in Women in Irish Drama: A Century of Authorship and Representation, ed. Melissa Sihra (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan 2007) [q.pp.].
  • George Cusack, The Politics of Identity in Irish Drama: W.B. Yeats, Augusta Gregory and J. M. Synge (London: Routledge 2009), 210pp.
  • Judith Hill, ‘Lady Gregory’, in W. B. Yeats in Context, ed. David Holdeman & Ben Levitas (Cambridge UP 2010) [Chap. 12]
  • Cathy Leeney, ‘Augusta Gregory: Shaping the Image and the Breaking of Love’, in Irish Women Playwrights - 1900-1939 (Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe 2010), pp.19-58;
  • Judith Hill, Lady Gregory: An Irish life (Cork: Collins Press 2011), 600pp.
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    See also Maria DiBattista & Lucy McDiarmid, eds., High and Low Moderns: Literature and Culture, 1889-1939 (NY: OUP 1996); R. F. Foster, W. B. Yeats: A Life, Vol. I: The Apprentice Mage (OUP 1997), Vol. II: The Arch-Poet (OUP 2003); Christopher Murray, Twentieth-Century Irish Drama: A Mirror Up to Nation (Manchester UP 1997); Ben Levitas, The Theatre of Nation: Irish Drama and Cultural Nationalism 1890-1916 (Clarendon Press 2002); Lionel Pilkington, Theatre and State in 20th Century Ireland (London: Routledge 2001).

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    Bibliographical details
    Irish University Review [“Lady Gregory” Special Issue], 34, 1 (Spring/Summer 2004), 212. CONTENTS: Contributors [v]; Anne Fogarty [ed.,] Introduction [viii]; James Pethica, ‘“A Young Man’s Ghost”: Lady Gregory and J. M. Synge’ [1]; Judith Hill, ‘Finding A Voice: Augusta Gregory, Raftery, and Cultural Nationalism, 1899-1900’ [21]; Carla De Petris, ‘Lady Gregory and Italy: A Lasting and Profitable Relationship’ [37]; Sinéad Garrigan Mattar, ‘“Wage For Each People Her Hand Has Destroyed”: Lady Gregory’s Colonial Nationalism’ [49]; Lucy McDiarmid , ‘Lady Gregory, Wilfrid Blunt, and London Table Talk’ [67]; Paige Reynolds , ‘The Making of a Celebrity: Lady Gregory and the Abbey’s First American Tour’ [81]; Michael McAteer , ‘“Kindness in Your Unkindness”: Lady Gregory and History’ [94]; R. F. Foster, ‘Yeats and the Death of Lady Gregory’ [109]; Richard Allen Cave, ‘Revaluations: Representations of Women in the Tragedies of Gregory and Yeats’ [122]; Dawn Duncan, Lady Gregory and the Feminine Journey: The Gaol, Grania and The Story Brought by Brigit’ [133]; Eric Weitz, ‘Lady Gregory’s “Humour of Character”: A Commedia Approach to Spreading the News’ [144]; Cathy Leeney, ‘The New Woman in a New Ireland?: Grania after Naturalism’ [157]; Anthony Roche, ‘Re-Working The Workhouse Ward: McDonagh, Beckett, and Gregory’ [171]; List of Books Reviewed [185]; Books Reviewed by Jarlath Killeen, Shaun Richards, Corinna Salvadori Lonergan, Alex Davis, Jefferson Holdridge, Douglas Archibald  [186]. List of Books Received [209].

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    References
    Stephen Brown
    , Ireland in Fiction [Pt. I] (Dublin: Maunsel 1919) & includes brief biographical notices and summaries of prose works.

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    Desmond Clarke, Ireland in Fiction [Pt II] (Cork: Royal Carbery 1985), alludes to an obituary article on Lady Gregory by Andrew E. Malone in Dublin Magazine (Jan.-March 1933) in which the author writes, ‘… Her family were of English extraction and its outlook and its sympathies were as British as its political view was Unionist. From her earliest childhood she had been devoted to the peasantry, in her native Galway and the folklore of her native county fascinated her. She learned Irish the more readily to assimilate it … She originated a curious literary folk dialect which came to be known as Kiltartan. It is doubtful, however, if she ever got anything more than the peasant speech; the mind eluded her. She viewed the peasant from without, from above, and as her outlook was essentially comic, she saw them as figures of fun.’

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    D. E. S. Maxwell, Modern Irish Drama (Cambridge UP 1984), lists Collected Plays, 4 vols, in The Coole Edition of Lady Gregory’s Writings, gen. eds., Colin Smythe and T. R. Henn (1970), Comedies [Vol. 1]; Tragedies and Tragic Comedies [Vol. 2]; Wonder and Supernatural [Vol. 3]; Translations, Adaptions and Collaborations [Vol. 4], all edited and introduced [Foreword] by Ann Saddlemyer; Also, Spreading the News (Maunsel 1909); The Rising of the Moon (Lon. 1907); other works, Cuchulain of Muirthemne (1902); Gods and Fighting Men (1904); Visions and Beliefs in the West of Ireland, with 2 essays and notes by W. B. Yeats, 2 vols. (1920); Our Irish Theatre (1913); and Lennox Robinson, ed., Lady Gregory’s Journals (1946).

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    Seamus Deane, gen. ed., The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing (Derry: Field Day 1991), Vol. 2, selects Cuchulain of Muirthemne [534-40]; Spreading the News [616-24]; The Workhouse Ward [624-29]; REFS & REMS, Shaw, ‘the modern Irish theatre began with Kathleen ni Houlihan of Mr Yeats and Lady Gregory’s Rising of the Moon, in which the old patriotism stirred and wrung its victims; but the theatre thus established called on Young Ireland to write Irish plays and … the immediate result was a string of plays of Irish life … in which the heroines proclaimed that they were sick of Ireland &c’ (Composite Autobiography), 498; [517, 518, 519, 521, ‘cultural nationalism’, ed. essay, Terence Brown], images to supplant stage-Irishman of popular theatre [ed., D. E. S. Maxwell], 562; an indispensable mediator, 563; [do., 567], Synge meets Lady Gregory, 717; with Yeats, rejected The Silver Tassie, 720; when Hyde found some Raftery poem in the RIA Lady Gregory found 22 more in another MS, 723; see also pp.770n. 772, 779, 798, 810n, 817n, 825, 818n, 830, 845, 898, 931, 1025, 1026n; and 560, BIOG. Notes on Robert Gregory, 783, 801-03, 817n; and further notes on Lady Gregory at FDA3 86 [helped Joyce], 171 [disapproved of Lennox Robinson’s founding Dublin Drama League], 231, 245n, 484, 548, 571, 655, 1312-13l 1323n.

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    Helena Sheehan, Irish Television Drama (RTE 1987), RTÉ film, An Fear Suil, writtten by Lady Gregory and directed by Brian MacLochlainn (1966); also The Workhouse Ward, Lady Gregory/Jim Fitzgerald (1963).

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    Publishers & Auctioneers
    Colin Smythe, Ltd. [publisher to the Lady Gregory Estate], lists Gods and Fighting Men [0-901072-37-0] Paperback £6.95; The Journals, volume 1, Books 1-29 (ed. Daniel J.Murphy) [0-900675-91-8] £40.00; ; The Journals, volume 2, Books 30-44 (ed., Daniel J.Murphy) [0-900675-92-6] £40.00; ; The Kiltartan Books [0-900675-33-0] £20.00; ; Mr Gregory’s Letter-Box, 1813-35 (ed.) [0-900675-41-1] £25.00; ; Poets and Dreamers [0-900675-35-7] £28.00; ; Selected Plays Chosen & Introduced by Mary Fitzgerald [0-86140-099-2] £22.00; ; 0-86140-100-X Paperback £6.95 Collected plays 2: Tragedies and Tragic-Comedies 0-900675-30-6 £22.50 0-86140-017-8 Paperback £6.95 Collected Plays 3: The Wonder and the Supernatural Plays 0-900675-31-4 £25.00; Collected Plays 4: Translations, Adaptations & Collaborations 0-900675-32-2 £22.50 0-86140-019-4 Paperback £6.95 Visions & Beliefs in the West of Ireland 0-900675-25-X £22.50 0-901072-36-2 Paperback £6.95 Douglas Hyde, Selected Plays (With translations by Lady Gregory) 0-86140-095-X £22.50 -096-8 £5.95 Shaw, Lady Gregory, & the Abbey (Editors Dan H.Laurence and Nicholas Grene) 0-86140-278-2 £25.00; Lady Gregory, Fifty Years After (Editors Ann Saddlemyer and Colin Smythe) 0-86140-112-3 £35.00; A Guide to Coole Park, Home of Lady Gregory Colin Smythe 3rd edition 0-86140-382-7 Paperback £4.95 Me & Nu: Childhood at Coole Anne Gregory 0-86140-010-0 Paperback £4.50. [Available at Colin Smythe Ltd., PO Box 4, Gerrards Cross, Colin Smythe, PO BOX 6 Gerrards Cross, Bucks ENGLAND SL9 8XA tel 01753 886000 fax 01753 886469; email & webpage.]

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    Sotheby’s [Auction Catalogue]: Printed Books formerly in the Library at Coole, The Property of Lady Gregory (London: Sotheby & Co.), Auction Catalogue, 20-21 March 1972 [510 lots]; prefaced by extract from Lady Gregory’s “Coole” (Dolmen 1971), by permission of The Lady Gregory Estate and Colin Smythe, Ltd: ‘After my marriage my husband told me that very soon after he had first met me, and when I knew him but slightly, he had in making his will left to me the choice of any six books in his Library at Coole. After marriage he directed, in his later testament, that not six, but all, should be mine through my lifetime. But is, as seems likely, I am now, through changes, to be divorced from these companionable shelves, I sometimes ponder which among the volumes should I choose from their long accustomed places to go with me for the scanty years or days of eyesight and understanding that remain.’ Goes on to cite titles such as Turnford (Voyages), Frazer (on Persia), Twiss (on Portugal and Spain) and Orme (on Hindustan), also naming Robert Gregory, the friend of Burke and Fox and builder of the Library - which incl. Institutes of Hindu Law and oriental translations by Charles Wilkinson [&c.], Singalese works collected by her husband, and those of Richard Gregory, ‘the one of my forerunners I feel most drawn to’, whose ‘romantic elopement [and] fabled riches make still the kernel of folk stories in Kiltartan’; further cites shelves filled by her husband with editions of the classics, a ‘more spacious shelf below [that] holds larger volumes [such as] a volume of Tragedies of Eschylus [1777], printed at Norwich in such “clean letters” as our wandering Irish poet Raftery admired; the Royal arms on the cover; its bookplate “Carlton House Libary” [… &c.]’ She ends: ‘I shall be sorry to leave all these volumes among which I have lived. They have felt the pressure of my fingers. They have been my friends.’ See specimen contents under Sir William Gregory, References, noting that some of the volumes bear her book plate and other matter tipped in relating to her, infra.)

     

    Booksellers
    Hyland Books (Catalogue 214) list The Image, A Play in Three Acts (1st ed. 1910); Hyacinth Halvey (1st sep. edn. 1910); The Kiltartan Moliere [The Miser, The Doctor in Spite of Himself; The Rogueries of Scapin] (1910); New Comedies (1st ed. 1913). Hyland Cat. 220 (1995) lists Seven Short Plays (NY Edn. n.d.) [signed copy from L. A. G. Strong to John Lehmann].

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    Libraries
    Library of Herbert Bell
    (Belfast) holds Lady Gregory, ed., Sir William Gregory, KCMG, An Autobiography (London 1894) [Signed ‘To J.B. Yeats from A Gregory Coole 1899]; Cuchulain of Muirthemne (London 1902); Lennox Robinson, ed., Lady Gregory’s Journals 1916-1930 (London n.d.); The Kiltartan Molière (Dublin 1910); Seven Short Plays (Dublin 1911); New Comedies (New York 1913); The Golden Apple, A Play for Children (London 1916); The Image & Other Plays (London 1923); the Story Brought By Brigit (London 1924); Elizabeth Coxhead, ed., Lady Gregory, Selected Plays (London 1962); Coxhead, Lady Gregory, A Literary Portrait (London 1966). Also reprint edns., The Coole Edition of her Works in 12 vols.; Visions and Beliefs in the West of Ireland (1970), Cuchulain of Muirthemne (1970), Gods and Fighting Men (1970), Our Irish Theatre (1972), The Comedies (1970), The Tragedies (1970), Wonders and Supernatural (1970), The Translations and Adaptations (1970), The Kiltartan Books (1971), Hugh Lane (1973), Poets and Dreamers (1974), The Book of Saints and Wonders (1971), Seventy Years 1852-1922 (1974); The Kiltartan Molière (Dublin 1910); also Vere R. T. Gregory, The House of Gregory (Dublin 1943).

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    Notes
    (Literary) Ideals: In 1901 Lady Gregory edited Ideals in Ireland, with contributions from Russell, Yeats, Hyde, et al., where John Eglinton has previously issued under the title Literary Ideals in Ireland (1899), a collection of essays by Yeats, Eglinton, George [“AE”] Russell and Larminie originally published as a controversy in the Daily Express - in which collection the essay by AE, in the last position, bears the same name as the title of the whole. [See details under John Eglinton, supra.]

    Under Twenty-Five (Gaiety Theatre 14 March 1903): an early version was published in New York under the title A Losing Game because the editor of The Gael thought that the card-game ‘25’’ at which the returning emigrant deliberately loses his money to the husband of his beloved would be unknown to Americans.

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    McDonough’s Wife, a play by Lady Gregory, was first published in New Irish Comedies (NY & London 1913).

    Spreading the News commonly copied as The Spreading of the News [err.], as in framed photography of the premier cast, in Glynn’s Hotel, Gort, Co. Galway; the cast represented incl. P. Mac Shuibhlaig; W. G. Fay; Sara Allgood; Máire Ní Gharbhaigh; Arthur Sinclair (poss. from Irish Nat. Theatre tour to Loughrea, organised by Gerald O’Donovan, 1901).

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    1916 Commemoration: The Abbey theatre commemorated the 1916 Rising in 1949 with three one-act plays including Lady Gregory’s Dervorgilla (Bríd Ní Loinsigh, Michael Hennessy, May Craig, and Philip Flynn) and The Rising of the Moon (Walter Macken and Harry Brogan, resp. as the Sargeant and the Ballad Singer); also Lost Light by Roibeard Ó Faracháin. (See The Irish Times, Tues. April 19, 1949; rep. in The Irish Times, 12 Sept. 2009 [suppl].)

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    W. B. Yeats: According to Robert Greacen, in a review of Judith Hill, Lady Gregory first met “Yates” on the same occasion as Coventry Patmore in the home of Lord Morris, and found him ‘every inch a poet’ sporting a black cloak, a black sombrero, and black tie, before meeting him again two years later with Paul Bourget, Arthur Symons and others - a meeting that marked the beginning of a long friendship. (Books Ireland, Dec. 2005).

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    Hugh Lane: Lady Gregory joined with [i.e., rallied] George Russell, Douglas Hyde, Somerville & Ross, Emily Lawless, George Russell, and W. B. Yeats in ‘An Appeal from Irish Authors’ (Freeman’s Journal, 13 Dec. 1904), protesting against Corporation judgement on Hugh Lane’s gallery of modern art. (See Adrian Frazier, ‘Paris, Dublin: Looking at George Moore Looking at Manet’, in New Hibernia Review, 1, 1, Spring 1997, pp.19-30; also Alan Denson, Letters from AE (London: Abelard-Schuman 1961), p.54 - as given under Jane Barlow, “Notes”, supra.

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    St. John Ervine, Some Impressions of My Elders (NY 1922), incl. remarks on Lady Gregory in a section more generally on Yeats: ‘When one remembers that she has established a considerable reputation as a dramatist on two continents entirely on the strength of a half-dozen one act plays, it is impossible to doubt that she is at least as skilful as he [Yeats] in drawing attention to herself.’ (p.260.)

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    Maud Gonne reports that she was confronted by Lady Gregory (‘a queer old lady, rather like Queen Victoria’) who asked her ‘if I would marry Willie Yeats’, and adds that Gregory was ‘rather relieved’ when she said no. (See Anthony Jordan, The Yeats Gonne MacBride Triangle, Westport 2000, pp.15-16.)

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    G. B. Shaw called her ‘the greatest living Irishwoman’ and attacked the Irish nationality of Devoy (‘not an Irish name’); the company was taken to court by Irish-Americans in Philadelphia, the plaintiff being Joseph McGarrrity; in the NY Evening Sun, during the troublesome Abbey American tour of 1911-12; Lady Gregory advised by G. B. Shaw to leave Ireland for Scotland in 1925, ‘Sell Coole and settle here, you will find all the beauties of Irland with the drawback of Irish inhabitants’; see Lucy McDiarmid, reviewing Dan H Laurence and Nicholas Grene, Shaw, Lady Gregory and the Abbey, A correspondence and a Record (Gerrards Cross 1993).

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    Alexander Irvine: Irvine dedicated his My Lady of the Chimney Corner (4th imp. 1914) ‘To/Lady Gregory / and / The Players of the Abbey Theatre / Dublin’. (Why?)

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    Eoin MacNeill wrote in a letter to Lady Gregory on reading Cuchulain of Muirthemne, ‘A few more books like it, and the Gaelic League will want to suppress you on a double indictment, to wit, depriving the Irish language of her sole right to express the innermost Irish mind, and secondly, investing the Anglo-Irish language with a literary dignity it has never hitherto possessed.’ (Ladey Gregory, Seventy Years, Gerrards Cross, 1974, p.402; cited in Michael Cronin, Translating Ireland: Translations, Languages, Cultures, Cork UP 1996, p.150.)

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    James Joyce (1) In Ulysses Buck Mulligan refers to Gregory of the Golden Mouth, in a reference to a place-name from J. M. Synge’s Riders to the Sea, being the Bay where the body of Bartley is washed up.

    Ulysses (“Scylla & Charybdis”) - Buck Mulligan: ‘Longworth is awfully sick, he said, after what you wrote about that old hake Gregory. O you inquisitional drunken jew jesuit! She gets you a job on the paper and [277] then you go and slate her drivel to Jaysus. Couldn’t you do the Yeats touch?’ (Bodley Head Edn., 1960; pp.277-78.) E. V. Longworth was the editor of the Dublin Daily Express and Lady Gregory’s Poets and Dreamers the book in question (26 March 1903; Critical Writings of James Joyce [1959] Viking Press 1965, pp.102-05.

    James Joyce (2): Joyce wrote a limerick on Lady Gregory: ‘There was an old lady named Gregory / Who cried, “Come, all ye poets in beggary.” / She found her imprudence / when hundreds of students / Cried, “We’re in that noble category.”’ (Quoted in Richard Ellmann, James Joyce 1959 [q.p.]); also in Stan Gebler Davies, James Joyce: A Portrait of the Artist, 1975, p.116 - remarking that Padraic Colum could recite it. Note that the authorship is disputed with Gogarty but generally ascribed to Joyce.

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    Oliver St John Gogarty - who wrote that Lady Gregory mostly inspired terror in Abbey actors - remarked of W. B. Yeats’s tour of Italy with her in 1907 that it must have been like seeing it from inside it from inside a Black Maria. (See R. F. Foster, R. F. Foster, W . B. Yeats: A Life - I: “The Apprentice Mage”, OUP 1997, p.367, citing Horace Reynold’s diary for 6 July 1927 [held in Harvard].)

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    Harry Clarke: ‘The Story Brought by Brigit’ by Lady Gregory is the subject of a panel in the stained-glass “Geneva Window” of Harry Clarke (1929).

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    Mervyn Wall: Wall portrays Lucian Brewse Burke, the hero, writing thus to the newspapers: ‘During the fifteen years office of the de Valera Government mansions all over the country were levelled to provide material for labourers’ cottages or “for the sake of the lead in the roof”; and no one in power raised a hand to save them. Countless material relics of our history were swept away. I need scarcely mention Coole, the residence of Lady Gregory and the birthplace of our literary movement. Today event he site of the house can scarcely be identified. The castle at Barrettstown is the only object which gives dignity to that town, and not only its it a piece of our country’s history but it is associated with one of the greatest of our love stories. There is now a new government in power … Are they also indifferent, and must we few in this country who care for the things of the spirit reconcile ourselves to living in a land of labourers’ cottages and country council houses? (Leaves for the Burning, 1952, p.18; cited in Patrick Rafroidi, ‘A Question of Inheritance: The Anglo-Irish Tradition’, in Rafroidi and Maurice Harmon, eds, The Irish Novel in Our Time, Université de Lille 1975-76, p.13.)

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    Derek Mahon has written, wrote, ‘Molière is at home everywhere and in every age’ adding that Lady Gregory play L’avare [based on Molière] had a good run at the Abbey. (q.p.), in his Preface to High Time: A Comedy in One Act (Field Day 1984; Gallery 1985).

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    Coole Park, near Gort, Co. Galway; home of Lady Gregory; guests icl. W. B. Yeats (20 years each summer from 1897 to his marriage), O’Casey, Shaw, Synge, Hyde, “AE” (George Russell), et al. The trunk of a robust copper beech in the garden holds many signatures - the ‘Autograph tree’ which sports the initials of Jack Yeats (with and an engraved donkey from his hand), Synge, Hyde (An Craoibhin), John Masefield, Augustus John (who also carved his signature at the top of the tree), Katherine Tynan, Violet Martin, Lady Gregory herself and her son Robert Gregory. The Coole Park estate was orig. 8,000 acres. The house was built by Robert Gregory, and English colonial officer who purchased the estate in 1768, having made money as chairman of the Honourable East India Company. He was sometime MP for Rochester. Arthur Young visited Coole in 1778 and remarked on Robert Gregory’s ‘noble nursery, for which he is making plantations.’ An eldest son was disinherited on account of his passion for cock-fighting but it attributed with the feat of transporting the statue of Maecenas in the walled garden across Europe by ox-cart. A second son William Gregory inherited instead, and became Under-Secretary for Ireland, 1812-32. He was the first in the line to treat Coole as his home, and planted the pinetum in the Nut Wood, being a self-confessed ‘Coniferomaniac’ (Feehan & O’Donovan, p.61.) In 1855 he had to sell off two-thirds of his estate to pay for racing debts. Having failed to provide his tenants with leases, he abandoned them to the incoming rack-rent owners and emigration in spite of good intentions. [Cont.]

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    Coole Park (cont.): His son William Henry Gregory (1817-1892) served as Governor of Ceylon and was an MP for his own constituency during the Famine and after. In 1880, following the death of first wife, he married Isabella Augusta Persse of Roxborough House, then 27. The sale of the remainder of the estate to the Encumbered Estates Board [Land Commission] was initiated by Robert in 1908 and later concluded by his widow Margaret in 1920 - on the condition that Lady Gregory retain life tenancy. House and demesne were sold on to the Irish Forestry Commission in 1927. Three months after Lady Gregory’s death in 1932 the entire contents of the house were auctioned while house itself was pointlessly demolished by a farmer who acquired it in 1941 [var. 1942]. Lady Gregory wrote: ‘I have lived there and loved it these forty years and through the guests who have stayed there it counts for much in the awakening of the spiritual and intellectual side of our country. If there is trouble now, and it is dismantled and left to ruin, that will be the whole country’s loss.’ (q.source.) Among the many poems that W. B. Yeats wrote at and about Coole Park are: ‘I walked among the seven woods of Coole’, ‘In the Seven Woods’, ‘Coole Park, 1929’, ‘Coole Park and Ballylee, 1931’, and ‘The New Faces’. See Lady Gregory, Coole (1931; enl. edn., Gerrard Cross 1971), and John Feehan & Grace O’Donovan, The Magic of Coole, [Dublin:] OPW 1993) - the latter dealing with the natural history of the estate and its immediate region.

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    Tithe-proctor: In Captain Rock (1824) Thomas Moore cited a report in the Galway Advertiser (18 Oct. 1822) reporting that ‘[a]t the quarter-sessions at Gort, one tithe-proctor processed eleven hundred persons for tithes. They were all, or most, of the lower order of farmers or peasants: - the expense of each process about eight shillings.’ (Captain Rock, 1824, p.297n.)

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    Portraits (1): an oil by John Butler Yeats [NGI]; Lady Gregory by Antonio Mancini c.1905, Municipal Gallery; see in Brian O’Doherty, The Irish Imagination 1959-1971 (1971), Rosc Exhib. Cat.

    Portraits (2): also Lady Gregory by Jacob Epstein (see Anne Cruikshank, Ulster Mus. 1965); also rep. in A. N. Jeffares, W. B. Yeats: Man and Poet (London: Routledge 1949 & Edns.), pls., between pp.182-83.

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    Portraits (3): portrait in oil by Gerald Festus Kelly (b.1879); and another by William Orpen in portrait in the National Gallery of Ireland; a bronze figure by Melanie le Brocquy entitled ‘Under the Tulipa Tree’ (c.1985), held in private collections.

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    Berg Collection (New York Public Library holds extensive papers of Lady Gregory including chiefly AMS of poems, also letters with correspondence relating to royal visit of Edward VII, and a copy of James Joyce’s limerick on Lady Gregory (‘poets in beggary …’; as infra) in her own hand, Irish Statesman, dated 1 June 1928, and a copy of a 1p. letter from Joyce, 22 Nov. 1902, 7 St Peter’s Tce. Cabra.

    Note also the phrases given to Stephen Dedalus in Telemachus episode of Ulysses: ‘That’s folk, he said very earnestly, for your book, Haines, Five lines of text and ten pages of notes about the folk and fish gods of Dundrum. Printed by the wiered sisters in the year of the big wind.’

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    Death-dates: Lady Gregory’s death is given as 28 [sic] April 1932 in Jeffares, 1988; 22 April, in Boylan, Dictionary of Irish Biography (1988); but correctly as first hour of 23 Monday April 1932, in Journals (ed. Murphy). In Commentary on the Poems of W B Yeats (1988), Jeffares gives the date of the demolition of Coole as 1942 (p.93).

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