O'Donnell, John Francis

(1837-1874)
   Irish poet from Limerick, the son of a shopkeeper, he was educated by the Christian Brothers. He spent his life as a newspaper reporter: the Munster News, in Limerick, where he began publishing his verse; subeditor on the Tipperary; and editor of The (Catholic) Tablet in London. Many of his poems were published in Chambers's Journal, and Charles Dickens included some of his verses in All the Year Round. Returning to Dublin in 1862, he joined the staff of the Nation, the revolutionary newspaper of the Young Ireland Party, and was editor of Duffy's Hibernian Magazine. Wherever he lived, O'Donnell championed the nationalist movement, and he contributed many nationalist poems to Dublin newspapers under the pseudonyms of "Caviare" and "Monkton West." He was London correspondent of the Irish People, the organ of the Fenian Movement, which was suppressed by the government in September 1865. He died in London and was buried at Kensal Green. His grave was marked by a Celtic cross. His two poetry publications: 1865, The Emerald Wreath; and 1871, Memories of the Irish Franciscans. Three of his poems: "A Spinning Song," "By the Turnstile," "Limerick Town."
   Sources: Dictionary of National Biography. Electronic Edition 1.1. Oxford University Press, 1997. English Poetry, Second Edition Bibliography: 19th Century British Minor Poets. W.H. Auden, ed. Delacorte Press, 1966. Lyra Celtica: An Antholog y of Representative Celtic Poetry. E.A. Sharp and J. Matthay, eds. John Grant, 1924. Lyra Celtica, Contents (http://www.sundown.pair.com/Sharp/Lyra%20Celtica/celtica_contents.htm). O'Donnell Coat of Arms and Family History (http://www.araltas.com/features/ odonnell/). Poems, By John Francis O'Donnell. Introduction by Richard Dowling. Ward and Downey, 1891. The Columbia Granger's Index to Poetry. 11th ed. The Columbia Granger's World of Poetry, Columbia University Press, 2005 (http://www.columbiagrangers.org).

British and Irish poets. A biographical dictionary. . 2015.

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