Richard Nugent

Works

Life
fl.1604; author of Cynthia (1604), a sonnet series - the first to be published in Ireland - addressing Queen Elizabeth and an Irish lady who has repudiated his love in a seeming allegory of Old English relations with the English crown.

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Works
  • Rich: Nugent's Cynthia: Containing Direfull Sonnets, Madrigalls, and passionate intercourses, describing his repudiate affections expressed in Loues owne Language (London: Printed by T[homas] P[urfoot] for Henrie Tomes 1604), 4 [s.p.];
  • Do. rep as Cynthia by Richard Nugent, ed. Angelina Lynch, intro. by Anne Fogarty (Dublin: Four Courts 2010), 82pp. [see details].

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Bibliographical details
Angelina Lynch, ed., Cynthia, by Richard Nugent, with an introductory essay by Anne Fogarty [Literature of Early Modern Ireland] (Dublin: Four Courts Press 2010), 82pp. First published in London by Thomas Purfoot for Henry Tomes, 1604. “Cynthia” (1604) is a fascinating sonnet sequence by Richard Nugent, a member of a long-established Old English dynasty based in County Meath. The poems which record Nugent’s hopeless love for an unyielding mistress subtly transpose many of the reigning conceits of Tudor poetry. “Cynthia” unites the roles of Elizabeth I and a local Irishwoman, simultaneously allegorizing the poet’s love of Ireland and his loyalty to the English crown. Nugent’s account of the psychic damage wrought by his beloved’s cruelty testifies to the difficulties that members of the Old English community had in maintaining these dual and often incompatible allegiances. Angelina Lynch is an IRCHSS fellow at University College Dublin; Anne Fogarty is professor of James Joyce studies at University College Dublin. (See COPAC - online.)

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