Rev. Denis Taaffe

From A Compendium of Irish Biography, 1878

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Taaffe, Denis, Rev., a Catholic clergyman, author of a History of Ireland, was born in Ireland in the middle of the 18th century. He was educated at Prague, entered the priesthood, and returned home. He took an active part in the Insurrection of 1798, and headed the insurgents at Ballyellis, in the County of Wexford, in an engagement where they almost annihilated a detachment of the regiment of Ancient Britons. He was afterwards wounded, but managed to escape into Dublin secreted in a load of hay. Being suspended from his sacerdotal functions, he became a Protestant. He wrote against the Union, and, between 1809 and 1811, published four volumes of An Impartial History of Ireland.

Although written hastily, and from meagre materials, it contains some matter of importance not to be met elsewhere. He became reconciled to his Church before his death in 1813, but continued hostile to the Government to the last, bitterly complaining to a friend who visited him in sickness of having to occupy lodgings in sight of "that cursed red flag," flying from the Magazine Fort in the Phoenix Park. His remains were laid in St. James's churchyard, Dublin, near Sir Toby Butler's monument.

Sources

16. Authors, Dictionary of British and American: S. Austin Allibone. 3 vols. Philadelphia, 1859-'71.

112. Dublin and London Magazine. 4 vols. London, 1825-'8.

208. Lanigan, Dr., and Irish Wits and Worthies: William J. FitzPatrick, LL.D. Dublin, 1873.
Lanigan, Rev. John, see No. 119.

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