General William Lawless

From A Compendium of Irish Biography, 1878

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Lawless, William, General, an ardent United Irishman, the confidant of Lord Edward FitzGerald, was Professor of Anatomy and Physiology in the Royal College of Surgeons, Dublin. Closely connected with John Sheares in the direction of affairs in the spring of 1798, a warrant for his arrest was issued on 20th May. Timely notice was, however, given him of the fact by Mr. Stewart, the Surgeon-General, and he escaped to France, where his abilities and spirit recommended him to the special favour of Napoleon. Entering the army, he rose to the rank of general, and distinguished himself on several occasions. He lost a leg at the battle of Dresden. General Lawless died in Paris, 25th December 1824. He was a distant relative and occasional correspondent of Lord Cloncurry. Thomas Moore speaks of him as "a person of that mild and quiet exterior which is usually found to accompany the most determined spirit."

Sources

65. Byrne, Myles: Autobiography. 3 vols. Paris, 1863.

72. Castlereagh, Viscount: Memoirs and Correspondence, edited by the Marquis of Londonderry. 12 vols. London, 1848-'53.

331. United Irishmen, their Lives and Times: Robert R. Madden, M.D. 4 vols. London, 1858-'60.

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