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The GrailContentsPrefaceChapter OneChapter TwoChapter ThreeChapter Four

Chapter FiveChapter SixChapter SevenChapter EightConwayMemoirBibliography

[The Grail of Catholic EmancipationCopyright © 2002 by Desmond Keenan. Book available from and]



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Newspapers .............................................................

Abbreviations ...........................................................

Archival Material .....................................................

Printed Sources ........................................................

Dictionary of National Biography .........................



            The principal sources on which I have drawn for this book are the Dublin newspapers. Of particular use was Saunders Newsletter, a commercial newspaper which gave a good but neutral coverage of the both the Catholic and Protestant organisations. Catholic affairs were very much a topic of interest. Its coverage of Catholic affairs tended to be brief but factual. It was not a Government paper, but on the whole supported the Government except where freedom of the press was concerned. The Dublin Evening Post was definitely a Whig newspaper, anti-Government and pro-Catholic, and thus a particular target for the Government. Though the rashness of the Magee family which owned and edited it gave the Government opportunities. Its factual coverage was also good, but the editors were inclined to indulge themselves in diatribes against the Government. The Magee family then employed a new and more circumspect editor. This was Frederick Conway, who was probably the greatest Irish editor in the first half of the century. He was strongly pro-Catholic and immersed himself in the activities of the Catholic Association. He claimed to have framed more addresses and resolution than O’Connell himself. The Freeman’s Journal was similar to the Post but not so outspoken. The Journal was at its peak at this time under the editorship of Philip Whitfield Harvey, one of the outstanding newspapermen of his generation. It declined after his death in 1826. The Evening Mail was started as a Protestant anti-Government when the Marquis Wellesley was Lord Lieutenant. It was soon to rival the neutral Newsletter as the paper with the largest circulation, but its coverage of Catholic affairs was poor. It does thrown light on the views of the anti-Emancipation Protestants. All of these owners and editors were Protestants. There was no Catholic newspaper, and no Catholic editor.

            A great disappointment was the quality of the provincial newspapers. None of them had reporters or even stringers for local news, and just reprinted the news in the Dublin newspapers. It is odd to find that even with a great event like the by-election in Clare in 1828, the local newspapers were just copying from the Dublin newspapers. Editorial comment in local newspapers up until 1825 was usually strongly pro-ascendancy and pro-Tory. After that date, more local newspapers with a pro-Whig and pro-Catholic tone began to appear. But they were no more objective or reliable than their Tory counterparts. By the end of the century almost every small town had one of each (for more information see Keenan II).  [Top]


D. Chron.  Dublin Chronicle

DEP          Dublin Evening Post

DNB          Dictionary of National Biography                  

DJ              Dublin Journal

FJ               Freeman’s Journal

RWC          Ramsey’s Waterford Chronicle

SNL            Saunders Newsletter 

MP             Member of Parliament

n.d.             no date

NLI            National Library of Ireland

OED         Oxford English Dictionary

PRONI       Public Record Office of Northern Ireland [Top] 

Archival Material 

Some Letters of the Marquis of Anglesey, PRONI, D619

Papers belonging to the Marquesses of Downshire, PRONI, D 671

Copies of  Papers of the Eighth Earl of Fingall, PRONI, T 3255

Family Papers of the Earls of Fingall

Papers of the Eighth Earl of Fingall NLI, Ms 8023

Family Papers of Lord Bellew

Typed extracts of the Acta of Propaganda 1800-1820, copies NLI

Scritture Riferite nei Congressi Irlanda, (documents referred to by the Congregation; Vatican Archives. Congegation of Propaganda). copies NLI

Letters of Archbishop Troy and Archbishop Murray, Dublin Catholic Diocesan Archives 30/7

Richard Reilly Papers, Armagh Catholic Diocesan Archives

Papers of Charles MacDermott, Clogher Diocesan Archives, PRONI, DioRC 1/6. 

            The archival material was disappointingly scanty, and much inferior to what was openly published. Indeed almost all important letters were published in the newspapers. [Top] 

Printed Sources

Aspinall, A., Politics and the Press 1780-1850, London 1949.

Allies, M. H., The Life of Pius VII, London, 1875.

Amherst, W. J., The History of Catholic Emancipation, London, 1886.

Ayling, S., George III, London, 1972.

Anon. Memoirs of Sir Robert Peel, London, 1856

Ayling, S., George III, London, 1972.

Barnes, D., George III and William Pitt 1783-1806, New York, 1965.

Beckett, J.C., The Making of Modern Ireland, London, 1966.

Bolton, C.C., The Passing of the Irish Act of Union, Oxford, 1966.

Brenan, M.J., Ecclesiastical History of Ireland, Dublin, 1840.

Buschkuehl, M., Great Britain and the Holy See 1746-1870, Dublin, 1982.

Butler, J., The Eldest Brother, London, 1973.

Brynn, E., Crown and Castle: British Rule in Ireland 1800-1830, Dublin, 1978.

Cogan, A., The Diocese of Meath, vol. 3, Dublin, 1870.

Cannon, S. Irish Episcopal Meetings 1788 to 1882, Rome, Italy, 1976.

Catholic Encyclopaedia, 1913 edition,

Crone, J. S., Concise Dictionary of Irish Biography, Dublin, 1928.

Cusack, M. F., Life and Times of the Liberator, 

Derry, J. (I), Charles James Fox, London, 1972.

---           (II) Castlereagh, London, 1976.

Doyle, J. (I) Letters on the State of Ireland, Dublin, 1825.

---            (II) The Life of the Rt. Rev. James Doyle, New York, n.d.

Evidence on the State of Ireland, Excerpts from Sessional Papers 1825, London 1826

Fitzpatrick, W.J., (I), The Life, Times, and Correspondence of the Rt. Rev. Dr. Doyle, Dublin, 1861.

---            (II), Correspondence of Daniel O’Connell, London, 1888.

Gash, N., Peel, London, 1976.

---        (II) Mr Secretary Peel, London, 1961.

Gray, T., The Orange Order, London, 1972.

Grattan, H. Life and Times of Henry Grattan, London, 1849.

Greville, C., The Greville Memoirs, London, 1874.

Gwynn, D., The Struggle for Catholic Emancipation, London, 1928.

Hay, E., History of the Insurrection in County Wexford A.D. 1798, Dublin, 1803.

Healey, J.,  Maynooth College, the Centenary History, Dublin, 1895.

Hibbert, C., George IV Regent and King, London, 1973.

Husenbeth, F., The Life of John Milner, Dublin, 1862.

Keenan, D., (I) The Catholic Church in Nineteenth Century Ireland, Dublin, Towota, 1983.

---                 (II) Pre-Famine Ireland: Social Structure, Xlibris, Philadelphia, 2000.

---                 (III) Ireland 1800-1850, Xlibris, Philadelphia, 2001.

Longford, E., (I) Wellington, the Years of the Sword, London, 1970

---                   (II) Wellington, the Pillar of State, London, 1972

Lover, S., Handy Andy, Belfast 1842

Luby, T.C., The Life and Times of Daniel O’Connell, Glasgow, n.d.

 McCullough, W., Memoirs of Richard Sheil, London, 1855.

MacDonough, M. The Life of Daniel O’Connell, London, 1903.

Maxwell, H., The Life of Wellington, London, 1900.

Milner, J., Enquiry concerning the Catholic Inhabitants of Ireland, London, 1808.

Moran, P., Specilegium Ossoriense, Dublin, 1874.

O’Grada, C., Ireland, A New Economic History 1780-1939, Oxford 1994.

Reid, L., Charles James Fox, London, 1969.

Reynolds, J. The Catholic Emancipation Crisis in Ireland, 1823-1829, New Haven 1954.

Roberts, M., The Whig Party 1807-1812, London, 1965.

Ronan, M., An Apostle of Catholic Dublin, Dublin, 1944.

Roseberry, Lord, Pitt, London, 1891.

Senior, H., Orangeism in Ireland and Britain 1795 to 1836, London, 1966.

Vane-Stewart, C., Memoirs and Correspondence of Viscount Castlereagh, London, 1848.

Ward, B., (I) The Dawn of the Catholic Revival in England 1781 to 1803, London, 1909.

---             (II) The Eve of Catholic Emancipation, London, 1911.

Webb, A., Compendium of Irish Biography, Dublin, 1878.

Webster, Sir Charles, The Foreign Policy of Castlereagh, London, 1963.

Wyse, T., Historical Sketch of the Catholic Association, London, 1829.

Ziegler, F. Melbourne, London, 1976. 

            The two volumes by Bernard Ward which relate the events from the point of view of the Church in England, are essential reading. The other books have been consulted regarding specific points. On O’Connell, the work by Luby and the lengthy entry in the Dictionary of National Biography are commended. Fitzpatrick’s Life of Doyle, and Ronan’s Apostle of Catholic Dublin are recommended for the light they throw on the life of Catholics at the time. On Arthur Wellesley, the Duke of Wellington, Lady Longford’s two volumes are indispensable. [Top] 

Dictionary of National Biography 

            The old version of the DNB from 1885 onwards has been followed. It is published by the Oxford University Press, and is available on CD-ROM where the Supplements are incorporated into the main sequence. The entry on every person mentioned during the period 1793 to 1829 was consulted, and as a source of factual information was second only to the newspapers.




Copyright Desmond J. Keenan, B.S.Sc.; Ph.D. ;.London, U.K.