GORE-BOOTH, Eva. The Buried Life of Deirdre. With twelve illustrations [LIMITED TO 256 COPIES ONLY]
1 in stock
London: Longmans, 1926. First edition. Quarto. pp. xi, 64, 12 (drawings). Quarter linen on grey papered boards, title on printed label on upper cover and spine. Edition limited to 256 numbered copies. Minor wear to extremities. Top edge gilt. A very good copy. Rare.
COPAC locates 8 copies only.
Eva Gore-Booth, the daughter of Sir Henry Gore-Booth, was born at Lissadell, County Sligo on 22nd May, 1870. Sir
Henry was a good landlord and provided for his tenants during the famine of 1879-80. It was probably the example of
Gore-Booth that helped develop in his two daughters, Eva and Constance Gore-Booth, a deep concern for the poor.
Eva Gore-Booth met Esther Roper, secretary of the Manchester National Society for Women’s Suffrage while in Italy
in 1896. The two women became life-long friends and Eva moved to Manchester where she became active in the
National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies and in women’s trade union movement. This included writing
propaganda pamphlets and articles in feminist and trade union journals.
The editor of Women’s Labour News, Gore-Booth became one of the leaders of the radical socialist group, the
Independent Labour Party. A popular platform speaker for left-wing causes, in 1903 Gore-Booth and Esther Roper
founded the Lancashire and Cheshire Women’s Textile Workers Representation Committee.
Eva Gore-Booth continued to be interested in the struggle for women’s rights and in the 1908 joined her sister,
Constance Markievicz, in the campaign against Winston Churchill in the parliamentary election in Manchester.
Gore-Booth published ten volumes of poetry and the verse dramas ‘Unseen Kings’ (1904) and ‘Death of Fionavar’
(1916). Eva Gore-Booth died in Hampstead, London on 30th June, 1928.
Written in 1908, the theme of the play is the working out of the sins of a past life, knowledge of which is granted to
Deirdre in her most famous incantation, in which she foretold the destruction of the Red Branch. The didacticism is
very thinly covered in the veil of the legend - this is, in fact, less a play than an idea for a play - and it is not clear why
Deirdre attributes knowledge of the sorrow to come particularly to women, since her own sorrow was foretold by the
bard Cathvah when she was born. There is, however, a certain charm about some of the songs, and the conflict of Angus
and Mannanaun is well conceived. Very charming, too, are the sketches by the author, who had never learnt to draw -
for an illustrated edition.
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