Cover image for Wild Irish women : extraordinary lives from history
Wild Irish women : extraordinary lives from history
Broderick, Marian.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Dublin : O'Brien, 2001.
Physical Description:
316 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm
Geographic Term:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
CT3650.I73 B76 2001 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

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From patriots to pirates, warriors to writers, and mistresses to male impersonators, this book looks at the unorthodox lives of inspiring Irish women.

In times when women were expected to marry and have children, they travelled the world and sought out adventures; in times when women were expected to be seen and not heard, they spoke out in loud voices against oppression; in times when women were expected to have no interest in politics, literature, art, or the world outside the home, they used every creative means available to give expression to their thoughts, ideas and beliefs.

In a series of succinct and often amusing biographies, Marian Broderick tells the life stories of these exceptional Irish women.

Author Notes

Marian Broderick is a writer and editor who lives and works in London.

Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

Broderick, a freelance writer and editor of Irish heritage who resides in London, here profiles 71 Irishwomen, both well known and unknown and including writers, nuns, artists, warriors, killers, journalists, politicians, and many others. Although the women are grouped according to 11 categories (e.g., tough cookies, women on the front line, great pretenders), many of them could have been included in more than one category. Maud Gonne, for example, is categorized as a "political animal" but is also styled the "Princess Diana of her day." Unlike Edmund Lenihan's Ferocious Irish Women, this work defines women as wild only in the sense of their being unconventional for their time. Whether Irish-born but making their mark elsewhere (like Mother Jones), Irish by inclination (like Countess Markievicz), or possibly mythical (like the pre-Christian Queen Maeve), these women all fulfill the author's purpose of telling a good story and help to relieve what historian Margaret Ward has called our "collective amnesia" about women's place. Although interesting reading and a good introduction to the subject, this title will not replace a more comprehensive biographical dictionary and reference book like Kit and Cyril O'Ceirins's Women of Ireland. For Irish and women's collections in college and public libraries. Janice Dunham, John Jay Coll. Lib., CUNY (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Table of Contents

Introductionp. 9
Women of Letters
Maria Edgeworthp. 12
Lady Sydney Morganp. 17
Marguerite, Countess of Blessingtonp. 22
Lady Jane Wildep. 25
Lady Augusta Gregoryp. 32
Somerville and Rossp. 38
Peig Sayersp. 42
Kate O'Brienp. 46
Wives and Lovers
Eleanor FitzGerald, Countess of Desmondp. 50
Marie Louise (Louison) O'Morphip. 55
Eibhlin Dubh ni Chonaillp. 59
Dora Jordanp. 62
Sarah Curranp. 67
Katharine O'Sheap. 71
Bridget Clearyp. 73
Nora Barnaclep. 76
Kitty Kiernanp. 80
The Great Pretenders
Kit Cavanaghp. 84
Anne Bonnyp. 88
Dr James Barryp. 91
Women on the Front Line
Anne Devlinp. 98
Mother Jonesp. 104
Madame Eliza Lynchp. 108
Dr Kathleen Lynnp. 110
Delia Larkinp. 114
Mairead Farrellp. 116
Veronica Guerinp. 119
Ahead of Their Time
Lady Arabella Dennyp. 124
Nano Naglep. 129
Ladies of Llangollenp. 132
Mary Ann McCrackenp. 136
Kate Tyrrellp. 141
Countess Constance Markieviczp. 143
Hanna Sheehy Skeffingtonp. 150
Dame Kathleen Lonsdalep. 157
Political Animals
Gormlaithp. 162
Charlotte Despardp. 164
Fanny and Anna Parnellp. 169
Maud Gonnep. 172
Louie Bennettp. 180
Mary MacSwineyp. 182
Kathleen Clarkep. 186
Saints and Sinners
St Brighidp. 194
Dame Alice Kytelerp. 197
Margaret Lessonp. 201
Lady Bettyp. 204
Venerable Catherine McAuleyp. 206
Margaret Haughereyp. 211
Tough Cookies
Queen Maeve of Connachtp. 216
Katherine FitzGerald, Old Countess of Desmondp. 218
Grace O'Malleyp. 220
Inion Dubhp. 228
Maire Rua O'Brienp. 231
Biddy Earlyp. 233
Molly Brownp. 236
Kathleen Behanp. 238
Intrepid Travellers
Lola Montezp. 242
Daisy Batesp. 250
Beatrice Grimshawp. 255
Lady Mary Heathp. 260
Maura 'Soshin' O'Halloranp. 265
Stars of Stage and Screen
Peg Woffingtonp. 270
George Anne Bellamyp. 276
Sara Allgoodp. 279
Dame Ninette de Valoisp. 282
Greer Garsonp. 285
Siobhan McKennap. 287
Artistic Temperaments
Sarah Purserp. 292
Lily and Lolly Yeatsp. 295
Grace Giffordp. 299
Mainie Jellettp. 302
Glossaryp. 307
Bibliographyp. 313