Collection ID: LMC 1988
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Collection context


Starkey, James Sullivan, 1879-1958 and O'Sullivan, Seumas, 1879-1958
The Starkey mss., 1891-1956, consist of letters and papers of James Sullivan Starkey, 1879-1958, (Seumas O'Sullivan, pseud.), as editor of the Dublin Magazine.
1 Box (1 standard)
Materials are in English.
Preferred citation:

[Item], Starkey mss., Lilly Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana.


Biographical / Historical:

James Sullivan Starkey (pseud. Seumas O'Sullivan), 1879-1958, was an Irish editor and poet from Dublin. Along with his friend and major literary influence George William Russel ("A.E."), he was considered one of the "Celtic twilight" or "Celtic revival" poets who wrote lyrically about Irish folklore. His poetry was first published in the Irish Homestead in 1902. In 1905, his first book of poetry, The Twilight People, was published by Whaley & Co., the publishing firm he had re-established in 1904 with actor and poet George Roberts. In 1926, he married Estella Frances Solomons, 1882-1968, a nationalist, Jewish painter. He was a founding member of the Irish National Dramatic Society (also called the Irish National Theatre Society); a founding member of the Irish Academy of Letters, a council member, and its vice president; president of Dublin PEN; and a member of the Old Dublin Society.

In 1923 he founded the Dublin Magazine, 1923-1925 and 1926-1958, Ireland's chief literary periodical of the time, which he edited and contributed to under his pseudonym Seamus O'Sullivan. Poets closely associated with the journal include Austin Clarke, Patrick Kavanagh, F.R. Higgins, and Padraic Fallon. The periodical discontinued publication after Starkey's death.

Scope and Content:

The Starkey mss., 1891-1956, consist of letters and papers of James Sullivan Starkey, 1879-1958, (Seumas O'Sullivan, pseud.), as editor of the Dublin Magazine.

Correspondents represented in the collection include: Samuel Beckett, Padriac Fallon, Thomas McDonagh, Arthur Morrison, Nora O'Kelly, Seumas O'Kelly, Vincent O'Sullivan, Thomas Brown Rudmose-Brown, George William Russell, Michael Sadleir, Rachel (Annand) Taylor, George (Lees) Yeats, and William Butler Yeats.

The letters refer to contributions to the Dublin Magazine, to other writings of the writers of the letters, to other writers, and to personal matters. A letter of November 18, [1908], from William Butler Yeats to Thomas Koehler deals with the secession of Koehler and others from the Abbey theatre in Dublin.

Included also in the collection are manuscripts of the following writings: a holograph draft of Seumas O'Kelly's "La grippe"; holograph drafts of three poems of O'Kelly, "The seannachie tells another story," "The borheen (1916)," and "Piper Denny Delaney," all of which were published in O'Kelly's Aftermath of East Week, (Dublin, 1917), pp. 10, 17- 18, and 25-26, respectively; a typescript of O'Kelly's poem, "The singer (To a goldfinch)"; holograph drafts of four book reviews written by Vincent O'Sullivan for the Dublin Magazine, reviewing The Strange Necessity, by Rebecca West (London, 1928), Ambrose Bierce: a Biography, by Carey McWilliams (New York, 1929); Jean-Luc Persecute, by Charles Ferdinand Ramuz (Paris, 1930), and ... Tourgueniev by André Maurois (Paris, [1931]); a holograph draft of an article by Vincent O'Sullivan of which the first page is lacking, but which seems to relate to an exhibition of letters from contributors to Francois Buloz, editor of the Revue des Deux Mondes from 1831 to 1877; and a typescript of William Butler Yeats' "Mourn - and then onward," a poem on the death of Parnell, which appeared in United Ireland, October 10, 1891.

Acquisition information:
Acquired: Purchase. 1959, 1960, 1962.
Physical location:
Lilly - Stacks



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[Item], Starkey mss., Lilly Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana.

Indiana University Bloomington
1200 East Seventh Street
Bloomington, Indiana 47405-5500, USA
Indiana University Bloomington
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