With an introduction, translation and glossary by David B. Quin. Preface by Liam Miller and foreword by John A. Gamble. With twelve folding woodcut illustrations. Belfast: Blackstaff Press, 1985. Quarto. pp. xxx, 220, 1 (2 plates). Quarter vellum on blue boards. Limited to 286 copies for sale. A fine copy in slipcase. Scarce.
The author of this historical poem John Derricke was a follower of Sir Henry Sidney, Elizabeth’s Lord Deputy of Ireland. The ‘Image of Irelande’ was written in 1578 and first published in 1581. The work is acclaimed for the set of twelve rude but curious woodcut illustrations of Irish Woodkerne (Foot soldiers). Depicting the costumes of the Irish at the close of the sixteenth century both civil, ecclesiastical and military. The illustrations included are: An Irish Chieftain; A Body of Kerne Burning a House; The MacSweeney Chiefs at Dinner; A Friar Blessing an Irish Chief; Triumphant return of the English Soldiers; Sir Henry Sidney setting out from Dublin Castle; Sidney delivering a Letter to an Irish Kerne (Donolle Obreane); The English Troops marching through the Countryside; Flight of the Irish with a Piper lying on the ground and his bagpipe beside him; Sidney’s Entry into Dublin; Rory Oge O’More in the Wilderness; and the Submission of Turlogh Lynagh O’Neale. Of the original edition only one complete copy is known and is located in the Drummond collection at Edinburgh University.