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Distributed for University College Dublin Press

Memories of West Wicklow


The Hanbidge family originated in Gloucester, and came to Ireland in the seventeenth century. They have been settled in the Donard/Dunlavin area ever since, with branches in Dublin, and elsewhere. The Hanbidge memoirs provide a vivid and unique account of Protestant ’small farmer’ life in West Wicklow in the nineteenth century, together with recollections of the 1798 rebellion. There are also glimpses of Jonathan Swift and members of the Synge family. Wiliam Hanbidge wrote at the behest of his daughter, setting down in a simple but detailed manner the life of his family, their farming practices, past-times, communal relations, religious views, and awareness of the outer world. His account of travelling to New York after the Famine with a party of boys is especially fascinating. No comparable account of his social group and class has ever been published. Mary Hanbidge’s devoted private publication of her father’s memoirs was eclipsed by the outbreak of the Second World War, when many copies were destroyed by bombing.

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Table of Contents

Introduction by W. J. Mc Cormack Memories of West Wicklow - A few thoughts of my young days My school days Sports My life and work in London Conclusion A few anecdotes of the Irish Rebellion of 1798 as I heard from my father Appendix I Foreword by Mary Hanbidge to the 1939 edition Appendix II Introduction by Mary Hanbidge - My father My father’s home Appendix III Folklore and superstitions Appendix IV Chronicles of the family and stock of the Hanbidges Notes

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