MACMANUS, SEUMAS

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MACMANUS, SEUMAS - Seamus MacManus Mentioning His Recently Deceased Wife, Poet Ethna Carbery
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MACMANUS, SEUMAS - Seamus MacManus Mentioning His Recently Deceased Wife, Poet Ethna Carbery

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MACMANUS, SEUMAS. (1867-1960). Irish author and storyteller and an influential member of the Irish Literary Revival. TLS. (“S. MacManus”). 1p. 4to. Donegal, July 27, 1904. To CORNELIUS WEYGANDT (1871-1957), a University of Pennsylvania professor of literature and writer on American culture and Irish literature. 

 

“I thank you for the copy of The Gael containing critique on ‘Four Winds of Eirinn’, and in response to your request I wish to say that I do not find any errors of fact in it. Of course, I could hardly undertake to say whether or not you made any errors of interpretation. Different people will interpret the same thing in different ways. Because my interpretation differed from yours, I could not for that reason say that your interpretation was a wrong one. Fiona MacLeod in her article in The Atlanticdiffered very much from you regarding its patriotic poems that you consider political. She quoted almost in full the poem ‘Mo Chraoivhim Cno.’

 

There is no biography and no bibliography of Ethna Carbery’s work (Please note that there is only one ‘r’ in the latter part of Carbery). I have not had such prepared. Some time I hope that her biography will be written by some one or other capable of dealing with it, and to it will probably be appended a bibliography.

 

I am pleased to note that you like my stories, and am interested too, to know that you [are] a friend of Mr. Morris, whom I esteem very much…”

 

Considered to be a great folklorist and storyteller in the tradition of the seanchaí, MacManus recorded traditional Irish tales which were published in newspapers and journals. In 1901, he married poet and publisher Anna Johnston who, upon her marriage,adopted the pennameEthna Carbery (1864-1902), and was author of Roddy McCorley and Song of Ciabhán.Shedied a year after their marriage, a tragedy which impacted the rest of MacManus’ life. In addition to her literary output, Carbery was a lecturer, founding member of the radical Irish women’s organization Inghinidhe na hÉireann with Maude Gonne, and publisher of The Northern Patriot and The Shan Van Vocht. McManus published some of her poems posthumously, including the popular “Mo Chraoivhim Cno,” in a 1902 volume entitled The Four Winds of Erin, mentioned in our letter.  

 

Fiona Macleod was a secret pseudonym of Scottish writer and biographer William Sharp (1855-1905), who, with Yeats, was a member of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, and who had a complicated relationship with the poet and other members of the Gaelic Revival.  

 

The Gael was an American “monthly journal devoted to the preservation and cultivation of the Irish language and the autonomy of the Irish nation,” published from 1885-1906 in Brooklyn, New York.  

 

Weygandt was a professor of English literature at the University of Pennsylvania from 1897 to 1952 with a special interest in poetry especially that of the Celtic Revival, penning several works on the subject and maintaining a correspondence with some of the leading members of that literary movement.  

 

With two minor holograph emendations, correcting the spelling of Weygandt’s name. Neatly folded and in very good condition; with the original envelope.

 

 

Item #20138


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