Essays by an Irish Rebel: available now in bookshops in Dublin, Limerick, Galway

‘Essays by an Irish Rebel: Revolution, Politics and Culture’ is a fascinating book of essays by a veteran of the 1916 Rising and Prof of Romance Languages at NUI Galway, Liam Ó Briain. Written in Irish between the 1930s and 1960s and published in a range of Irish-language periodicals they are gathered together and translated here into English for the first time. Focused mainly on the War of Independence, the book is now available in bookshops in Dublin, Galway, Limerick and a few other towns or by post. Details below. The essays were gathered together and carefully and faithfully translated by my father Eoin with notes by my mother Niamh. Very proud of them. It includes lots of seldom-seen photos from Galway during the war of Independence. 

In Dublin: Alan Hanna’s Rathmines Road;  Books Upstairs D’Olier St;.

In Galway: at;  Charlie Byrnes in Galway.;  Dubray Books;  NUIG Siopa Leabhair;  Moycullen Bookshop; Clifden Bookshop;  Siopa Standún, Spiddal.  

In Limerick: O’Mahonys Booksellers. And Tralee Castle Street.

Liam Ó Briain (1888 – 1974) was a well-known figure in Irish public life. Spending his early life in the Dublin Docks area , he fought in the Easter Rising of 1916 as an Irish volunteer and endured imprisonment in the aftermath. After his detention he was appointed Professor of Romance Languages at University College Galway where he lectured for forty years. He had also travelled in Europe between 1911 and 1914 on a scholarship . He was a target of the Black & Tans in Galway during the War of Independence and was again imprisoned. He is a striking presence in Peter Lennon’s 1968 documentary Rocky Road to Dublin.

This book includes profiles of friends who were to become notable figures in modern Irish history. Friends like Eoin Mac Néill, Pádraic Ó Conaire, Arthur Griffith, Seán T O’ Kelly, Pádraig de Brún, Piaras Béaslaí and WT Cosgrave. The 25 essays also include a fascinating piece on his neighbour in the Dublin Docklands , the playwright Sean O’Casey and a chance meeting with an Englishman who had participated in the execution of an Irish patriot .


Ardcrú Books have published two other books that give new insights into the 1916 Rising, the War of Independence and other aspects of twentieth century Irish history and culture.

Insurrection Memories 1916 (2016), also by Liam Ó Briain

Memoir of an Irish Economist, Working Class Manchester to Irish Academia(2015) at €15.00 each. More details here:


About niallodoc

Senior Lecturer in the School of Political Science and Sociology at the National University of Ireland Galway
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