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Irish Literature and Language (Irish Studies)

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Biography

A multi-page research guide to Irish literature resources in the Boston College libraries

Biographical Databases

Available to the Boston College community:

Contemporary Authors  Provides complete biographical and bibliographical references for more than 90,000 authors in the U.S. and around the world.

Dictionary of Literary Biography The online version of the DLB provides access to thousands of essays from 99 DLB volumes focusing on all genres and time periods of American and British Literature.

Literature Online (LION) A fully searchable library of more than 330,000 works of English and American poetry, drama, and prose. This online library also includes biographies, bibliographies, criticism, and reference sources. You may search the complete Literature Online database at once, or choose an individual collection from the list of collections


Literature Resource Center Provides information on more than 90,000 novelists, poets, essayists, journalists and other writers, with in-depth coverage of 2,000 of the most-studied authors. Combines many of Gale's literary databases in a single Internet-searchable service.

More biographical databases at Boston College ...

Biographical Dictionaries of Irish Authors (English Language)


Brady, Anne M. and Brian Cleeve. Biographical Dictionary of Irish Writers. New York: St. Martin's Press, 1985. (O'Neill Library: Reference PR8727. B5 1985) Rev. ed. of: Dictionary of Irish Writers / Brian Cleeve. 1967-1971. Gives information on Irish novelists, playwrights, poets, and short storyists. Part one covers writers in English, and part two covers writers in Irish and Latin.

Coleman, Anne. Dictionary of Nineteenth Century Irish Women Poets. Galway: Kenny's Bookshop, 1996. (O'Neill Library: Reference PR8733.C65 1996; Burns Library: PR8733.C65 1996 IRISH) Includes nineteenth century women who were born in Ireland (and did not emigrate from the British Isles) and wrote in English. Does not provide literary or historical context, or any critical analysis. Sets out to disprove three myths about Irish women's poetry of the nineteenth century: that "little was written, it was unpopular, and it was isolated."

Dictionary of Irish Biography (BC Community Only). A collaborative project between Cambridge University Press and the Royal Irish Academy this database contains over 9,000 signed biographical articles in fields such as politics, law, religion, literature, journalism, architecture, painting, music, the stage, science, medicine, engineering, entertainment and sport.

Dictionary of Literary Biography. O'Neill Library: Reference. See individually titled works in series and Dictionary of Literary Biography online version. The print version contains more photographs than does the online version.

Gonzales, Alexander G. Irish Women Writers: an A-Z Guide. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2006. (O'Neill Library: PR8733.I75 2006)

Gonzales, Alexander G. Modern Irish Writers: A Bio-Critical Sourcebook. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1997. (O'Neill Library Reference: PR8727.G66 1997)

Hogan, Robert. Dictionary of Irish Literature. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1996. (O'Neill Library Reference: PR8706.D5 1996; Burns Library: PR8706.D5 1996 REF) Dictionary format, in two volumes.

Loeber, Rolf and Magda Loeber with Anne Mullin Burnham. A Guide to Irish Fiction, 1650-1900. Dublin: Four Courts, 2006. (O'Neill Library Reference: PR8706.L64 2006; Burns Library: PR8706.L64 2006 IRISH)

McMahon, Sean & O'Donaghue, Jo. Mercier Companion to Irish Literature. Cork: Mercier Press, 1967-1971. (O'Neill Library: Reference PR8706.M47 1998) Shorter and more portable than Welch's, Boylan's or Hogan's dictionaries of Irish literature.  Includes writers and organizations, and is cross-referenced.


Molino, Michael. Twenty-first century British and Irish Novelists. Detroit: Gale, 2003. (O'Neill Library Reference: PN451.D53 vol. 267)


O' Donoghue, D.J. The Poets of Ireland: A Biographical and Bibliographical Dictionary of Irish Writers of English Verse. Dublin: Hodges, Figgis & Co., Ltd.; London: Henry Frowde, Oxford University Press, 1912.(O'Neill Library: Reference PR8706.O3 1912)
Emphasis is on poets who wrote in English. He defines poets broadly to include songwriters, as long as their works had been previously published. Entries for each author include biographical information and a brief bibliography.

O'Toole, Tina. Dictionary of Munster Women Writers, 1800-2000. Cork: Cork University Press, 2005. (O'Neill Library: PR8706.D53 2005; Burns Library: PR8706.D53 2005 REF)

Welch, Robert, ed. The Oxford Companion to Irish Literature. New York: Clarendon, 1996. (O'Neill Library: Reference PR8706.O88 1996; Burns Library: PR8706 .O88 1996 REF) In dictionary format. Covers sixteen centuries of Irish literature, including essays on organizations, authors, and genres.  Provides historical context to pieces of literature, bibliographies after most entries, maps, and chronologies.

Biographical Dictionaries of Irish Authors (Irish Language)

Breathnach, Diarmuid. Beathaisnéis: 1882-1982. Baile Átha Cliath: An Clóchomhar, 1986- (O'Neill Library: Reference PB1317.B327x 1986) Includes biographies of Irish-language writers from the late nineteenth to the late twentieth century. Entries are in Irish.


Brady, Anne M. and Brian Cleeve. Biographical Dictionary of Irish Writers. New York: St. Martin's Press, 1985. (O'Neill Library: Reference PR8727. B5 1985) Rev. ed. of: Dictionary of Irish Writers / Brian Cleeve. 1967-1971. Gives information on Irish novelists, playwrights, poets, and short storyists. Part one covers writers in English, and part two covers writers in Irish and Latin.

Ó Cearnaigh, Seán. Scríbhneoirí na Gaeilge, 1945-1995. Baile Átha Cliath: Comhar Teoranta, 1995. (O'Neill Library: Reference PB1325 .O14 1995) Begins with a lengthy essay on writing in Irish between 1945 and 1995, followed by biographies of authors. Essay and entries are in Irish.


Uí Nia, Gearóidín. Eolaire Chló Iar-Chonnachta de Scríbhneoirí Gaeilge: Who's Who in Irish-language Writing. Indreabhán, Conamara: Cló Iar-Chonnachta, c1998. (O'Neill Library: PB1325 .U48 1998) A directory, in Irish, of Irish language literary authors, with contact information and very brief outlines of literary careers. The entries contain little or no biographical information.