Padraic Colum was one of Ireland’s most popular writers of the early 20th century.
He was a talented playwright and poet, and was friends with fellow literary giants such as James Joyce and WB Yeats. Colum is best remembered for his work to preserve the Irish language and tradition with his work.
He got his name, Patrick Collumb, from Collumbkille but changed it to Padraic Colum after joining the Gaelic League and the Irish Republican Army in 1901.
He was born in a workhouse in Collumbkille, Co Longford – his father worked there as the workhouse master. There he saw the poverty of the people. He also heard tales of the lives of people who had lived through the famine in the mid-19th century.
Colum also travelled Ireland’s fairs and markets with his uncle, who was a poultry dealer. He met ballad singers and storytellers from whom he gained much of his inspiration.
He collected many songs which had been passed through generations orally, and wrote them down keeping them for the future generations, such as She Moved Through the Fair.
Read more about the song with videos and lyrics and chords on our sister site, Irish Music Daily
He played a large part in the Irish Literary Revival, and was founder member of Dublin’s Abbey Theatre, and a leading figure in the Irish Literary Revival. He wrote 61 books, including children’s books.
After studying at University College, Dublin, he went to America 1914, and was made a US citizen in 1945.
An Old Woman of the Roads
Padraic Colum poems
Did you know?Singing Cork barman has fans across the world - a video of the Irish music loving barman singing while he poured a pint went viral as people became enchanted by his easy going style and great voice. Check out his video.
Have you heard about…Irish people warned about the ‘Celtic curse’ - a potentially deadly blood condition, that harms the liver, heart and pancreas, has been labelled the ‘Celtic Curse’ because more people in Ireland are prone to it than people from other countries. Find out more.
What about this…‘Irish giant’ Tom Crean was one of the bravest and toughest explorers of the early part of the 20th century. Thanks to his positivity and faith, he managed to not only survive horrific conditions but also save the lives of his colleagues. Find out more.