St. Patrick's Day may have been and gone, but that doesn't mean that our appreciation for all of the wonderful things Ireland has to offer must come to an end. And among all things wonderful and Irish are perhaps some of the greatest authors the world of literature has ever seen. So, to keep showing our love after the celebrations have died down, here are just a few of the most memorable Irish names in literature - and what makes them so great and and revered!
It takes a special kind of talent to write a book that still has an enduring legacy 300 hundred years after its release. Among his other works, Jonathan Swift's Gulliver's Travels is a name that just about any reader still knows today, which is a truly impressive feat since this classic adventure book was first published in 1726! In fact, this Dublin born writer's work has proven to be so influential that his particular form of satirical writing (deadpan and ironic) has been named after him; Swiftian.
It's almost impossible to hear the name of James Joyce without instantly thinking of his classic, widely-known modernist novel Ulysses. Considered one of the most important works of modernist literature, this is not only the ultimate example of Joyce's penmanship but also his love for his homeland and country. As quoted by the author himself, "I always write about Dublin, because if I can get to the heart of Dublin I can get to the heart of all the cities of the world." Overall, it's debatable that there even is an Irish novel that deserves more celebration, and for that we will always have James Joyce to thank.
This writer (and his most successful novel) needs no introduction. Dracula has chilled the blood and stopped the hearts of millions of readers since 1887, serving as the creation of one of the most terrifying, merciless, and enduring horror characters in all of literary history. What many fans of Dracula may not know, however, is that his creator was born and raised in Dublin, showing yet again what a talent the Irish have when it comes to literature and creativity.
Need we say more? Oscar Wilde, as our author of the month, has already had a full blog post recently dedicated to him here at Country House Library - but we just couldn't keep his name from this list! A true titan of classic literature, his plays and lone novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray, have cemented Wilde as both one of the most beloved Irishmen and one of the most respected writers in all of history. A name that belongs on any bookshelf, whether its his novel, his plays, or his beautiful poetry!