LYSAGHT, Edward. Poems, by the late Edward Lysaght, Esq. Barrister at Law. GAISFORD ST LAURENCE HOWTH CASTLE COPY
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Dublin: Gilbert & Hodges, 1811. Foolscap octavo. pp. xix, xxii, xix, , 110. Bound possibly by George Mullen in full diced russia, covers framed by double gilt fillets and a blind acanthus roll. Spine divided into six panels by five gilt raised bands, title in gilt direct in the second; board-edges and turn-ins ruled in gilt; splash-marbled endpapers. Armorial bookplate of Thomas Gaisford. Upper joint rubbed. A fine copy. Extremely rare.
No copy located on COPAC. WorldCat 1.
Lysaght, Edward (1763-1810), lawyer, wit, and versifier, was the only son of John Lysaght, landed gentleman of Brickhill, County Clare, and Jane Eyre Dalton, daughter of Edward Dalton of Deerpark, County Clare, and first cousin of Lord Eyre of Eyrecourt, County Galway. Edward obtained his early education at Rev. Patrick Hare’s school in Cashel, Co. Tipperary. He later attended TCD and Oxford University, taking an MA in the latter. While studying at Trinity his father died, and Lysaght, full of deep grief, returned home to his mother. With her he remained for some time, and in 1784 he was after examination admitted a student of the Middle Temple, London. Before long he gained some of the best prizes, and having taken his degree of M.A. at Oxford, was called to the English and Irish bar in 1798. Lysaght’s poetry was, like himself, full of wit and humour, with an under-stratum of feeling and sentiment, and a strength and directness of expression which were characteristic of him in everyday life. His style is essentially a healthy one, escaping on the one hand from the stiffness of the age in which he lived, yet free from license and not overloaded with ornament. His insight into character, especially Irish character, was wonderful, and his “Sprig of Shillelah” remains to this day a perfect photograph of the now extinct being it portrays. The respect of the bench and bar in Ireland for Lysaght’s memory was shown by their donation of £2520 for his widow and daughters. This volume of his poems was published in Dublin in 1811, but it does not contain some of his best effusions, many of which are now doubtless lost.
Engraved portrait frontispiece drawn by J. Cullen from recollection, P. Maguire Sculpt.
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