DAY, Ella B. Mr. Justice Day of Kerry 1745-1841. With a foreword by Stephen Gwynn.
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Illustrated. Exeter: William Pollard, 1938. pp. xix, , 311, 14 (plates). Blue ribbed cloth, Day armorial shield in silver on upper cover, title in silver on spine. Some mild foxing. A very good copy. Extremely rare. No copy located on COPAC. WorldCat 1.
Robert Day (1746-1841) was the outstanding politico-judicial figure of Kerry at the turn of the nineteenth century. Born at Lohercannon, outside Tralee, his mother was Lucy FitzGerald, daughter of the Knight of Kerry. He was one of the most prominent Kerryman of his day in the generation preceding Daniel O’Connell, whom he knew and with whom he was often in conflict. Day was a member of the Irish Parliament, representing Tuam and later Ardfert. and at the same time the popular judge of the Dublin county court at Kilmainham. From there he was raised to the King’s Bench in early 1798 where he served until 1819. He lived at Loughlinstown House, which he leased from the Domville family. He was the father of Elizabeth Lady Denny and principal trustee of the Denny estate which included the town of Tralee and its parliamentary borough, and he set about reorganising that estate when his daughter’s family prepared their move to England to become absentee landlords. When he died on 8th February, 1841, it was reported in ‘The Kerry Evening Post’: “The good old Judge ... The kind relative, the true and steadfast friend, the benefactor of the poor, and the refuge of the distressed and the afflicted, has at last given up his spirit into the hands of the Judge of all flesh ... Of his character as a Judge of the land for many years, the history of his country will speak. His decisions were those of justice tempered by mercy; and many a trembling wretch was rescued from ignominious death and reserved for repentance and forgiveness. As a kind, indulgent landlord, none stood higher in the estimation of the public, or in the affection of his tenantry, who, with his highly respectable and numerous relatives and friends, will never cease to revere his memory, Of him it may be truly said ‘he never made an enemy, never lost a friend’.
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