Douglas Hyde: Wikis

Advertisements
  
  

Note: Many of our articles have direct quotes from sources you can cite, within the Wikipedia article! This article doesn't yet, but we're working on it! See more info or our list of citable articles.

Encyclopedia

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Douglas Hyde

Douglas Hyde, circa 1912

In office
25 June 1938 – 24 June 1945
Succeeded by Seán T. O'Kelly

Born 17 January 1860(1860-01-17)
Castlerea, County Roscommon
Died 12 July 1949 (aged 89)
Dublin, Ireland
Political party all-party nomination
Spouse(s) Lucy Cometina Kurtz
Profession UCD professor; Irish language activist
Religion Church of Ireland
Signature

Douglas Hyde (Irish: Dubhghlas de hÍde; 17 January 1860 – 12 July 1949), known as An Craoibhín Aoibhinn ("The Pleasant Little Branch"), was an Irish scholar of the Irish language who served as the first President of Ireland from 1938 to 1945. He founded the Gaelic League, one of the most influential cultural organisations in Ireland.

Contents

Background

Hyde was born at Longford House in Castlerea in County Roscommon, while his mother, Elizabeth née Oldfield (1834-1886) was on a short visit there. His father, Arthur Hyde, was Church of Ireland rector of Kilmactranny, County Sligo from 1852 to 1867, and it was here that Hyde spent his early years. Arthur Hyde & Elizabeth Oldfield married in Co. Roscommon in 1852 and had three other children, Arthur (1853-1879 in Co. Leitrim), John Oldfield (1854-1896 in Co. Dublin), and Hugh (1856) Hyde.[1] In 1867, his father was appointed prebendary and rector of Tibohine, and the family moved to neighbouring Frenchpark, in County Roscommon. While a young man he became fascinated with hearing the old people in the locality speak the Irish language. He was influenced in particular by the gamekeeper Seamus Hart and the wife of his friend, Mrs Connolly. He was crushed when Seamus Hart died (Douglas was 14) and his interest in the Irish language, which was the first language he began to study in any detail, and which was his own undertaking, flagged for a while. However, he visited Dublin a number of times and realised that there were groups of people, just like him, interested in Irish, a language looked down on at the time by many and seen as backward and old-fashioned.

Rejecting family pressure that like past generations of Hydes he follow a career in the Church, Hyde instead became an academic. He entered Trinity College, Dublin where he became fluent in French, Latin, German, Greek and Hebrew. His passion for Irish, already a language in severe decline, led him to found the Gaelic League, or in Irish, Conradh na Gaedhilge, in the hope of saving it from extinction.

Hyde married Lucy Cometina Kurtz, a German, in 1893 and had two daughters, Nuala and Una.

Conradh na Gaedhilge

Hyde's Irish language movement, initially seen as eccentric, gained a mass following throughout the island. He published a pamphlet called The Necessity for De-Anglicising Ireland, arguing that Ireland should follow her own traditions in language, literature and even in dress.

In 1893 he helped found the Gaelic League. It was set up to encourage the preservation Irish culture, its music, dances, and language. Many of the new generation of Irish leaders who played a central role in the fight for Irish independence in the early twentieth century, including Patrick Pearse, Éamon de Valera (who married his Irish teacher Sinéad Ní Fhlannagáin), Michael Collins, and Ernest Blythe first became politicised and passionate about Irish independence through their involvement in Conradh na Gaedhilge or (Gaelic League). His use of Irish to fill in the 1911 census form, provides a primary source confirming his commitment to this language (Census 1911 - de hÍde). Interestingly, his position, entered on the census form as (Ollamh) or professor at the National University of Ireland, (and its later constituent college University College Dublin), has been (intentionally?) mistranslated by the enumerator as "teacher"

Hyde himself, however, felt uncomfortable at the growing politicisation of his movement (which had been infiltrated by the Irish Republican Brotherhood, just like the Irish Volunteers and the Gaelic Athletic Association) and resigned the presidency in 1915; he was replaced reluctantly by co-Founder Eoin MacNeill[2].

Senator

Hyde had no association with Sinn Féin and the Independence movement. He did, however, accept appointment to Seanad Éireann, the upper house of the Irish Free State's Oireachtas (parliament) from his friend, the President of the Executive Council W. T. Cosgrave, after the creation of the new state.

However, his tenure was short-lived. In November 1925, the house moved from being an appointed to an elected body. Hyde contested the election, which was based on one state-wide constituency, but a smear by a religious organisation, the Catholic Truth Society of Ireland, based on his supposed support for divorce (in fact he was anti-divorce) and his Protestantism, and promoted by the CTS secretary in the letters column of the Irish Independent, fatally damaged his chances and he lost his seat.

He returned to academia, as Professor of Irish at University College Dublin, where one of his students was future Attorney-General and President of Ireland, Cearbhall Ó Dálaigh.

President of Ireland

Hyde is notable in that he is the only leader of independent Ireland to be featured on its banknotes, here on a Series C Banknote of IR£50.

In April 1938, by now retired from academia, Douglas was plucked from retirement by Taoiseach Éamon de Valera and again appointed to Seanad Éireann. Again his tenure proved short, even shorter than before. But this time it was because, on the suggestion of Fine Gael in inter-party negotiations to choose a first President of Ireland, Hyde had been chosen to take on the office. He was selected for a number of reasons.

  • Both wanted to purge the humiliation that had occurred when he had lost his Senate seat in 1925;
  • Both wanted a president who would prove that there was no danger that the new president would become an authoritarian dictator in Ireland, a widespread fear when the new constitution was being discussed in 1937;
  • Both wanted to pay tribute to Hyde's Conradh na Gaeilge role in achieving Irish independence.
  • Both wanted to choose a non-Catholic to disprove the assertion that the State was a "confessional state".[3]

Hyde was inaugurated as the first President of Ireland in June 1938 and moved into the long vacant Viceregal Lodge. Hyde's recitation of the Presidential Declaration of Office in his native Roscommon Irish dialect, remains one of the few recordings of a dialect that has long disappeared and of which Hyde himself was one of the last users.

"Fine and scholarly old gentleman" says F.D.R.

Hyde, with his handlebar mustache and warm personality, was a popular president. United States President Franklin D. Roosevelt called President Hyde a "fine and scholarly old gentleman", while President Hyde and King George V corresponded about stamp collecting.

However in April 1940 he suffered a massive stroke. Plans were made for his lying-in-state and state funeral, but to the surprise of everyone he survived, albeit paralysed and having to use a wheelchair.

Decisions as President

Although the role of President of Ireland was, and is, largely ceremonial, Hyde did have a small number of important decisions to make during his presidency.

He was confronted with a crisis in 1944 when de Valera's government unexpectedly collapsed in a vote on the Transport Bill and the President had to decide whether or not to grant an election to de Valera.[4] (He granted the election.)

President Hyde also twice used his power under Article 26 of the Constitution, having consulted the Council of State, to refer a Bill or part of a Bill to the Supreme Court, for the court's decision on whether the Bill or part referred is repugnant to the Constitution (so that the Bill in question cannot be signed into law).

On the first occasion, the court held that the Bill referred - Offences Against the State (Amendment) Bill, 1940- was not repugnant to the Constitution. [5] In response to the second reference, the Court decided that the particular provision referred - section 4 of the School Attendance Bill, 1942 - was repugnant to the Constitution.[6]

Because of Article 34.3.3° of the Constitution, the constitutional validity of the Offences Against the State (Amendment) Act, 1940[7] cannot be challenged in any court, since the Bill which became that Act was found by the Supreme Court not to be repugnant in the context of an Article 26 reference.

Retirement and death

Hyde left office on 25 June 1945. Due to his ill-health he did not return to his Roscommon home Ratra, which had lain empty since the death of his wife early in his term. Instead he was moved into the former Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant's residence in the grounds of Áras an Uachtaráin, which he renamed Little Ratra and where he lived out the remaining four years of his life. He died quietly at 10pm on 12 July 1949, aged 89.

State funeral

Memorial to Douglas Hyde in St. Patrick's Cathedral, Dublin.

As a former President of Ireland he was accorded a state funeral. One protocol problem arose; as a member of the Church of Ireland his funeral service took place in Dublin's Church of Ireland St. Patrick's Cathedral. However, contemporary rules of the Roman Catholic Church prohibited Roman Catholics from attending services in non-Catholic churches. As a result all but one member of the Catholic cabinet, Dr. Noel Browne, remained outside the cathedral while Hyde's funeral took place. They then joined the cortège when his coffin left the cathedral. Éamon de Valera, by now Leader of the Opposition also did not attend, being represented by a senior Fianna Fáil figure who was a member of the Church of Ireland, Erskine Childers, a future President of Ireland himself. Hyde was buried in County Roscommon at Portahard Church, (where he had spent most of his childhood life) beside his wife Lucy, his daughter Nuala, his sister Annette, mother Elizabeth and father Arthur.

In Memorial

Advertisements

Gaelscoil de hÍde , Roscommon

In 2000 Gaelscoil de hÍde was set up in Roscommon town. Currently 120 students attend the school.

Hyde Museum, Frenchpark, Roscommon

His father's old church is now a museum dedicated to showing memorabilia about Douglas Hyde, the Church of Ireland squire who took up the cause of the Irish language and ended up as the first President of Ireland.

Coláiste de hÍde, Tamhlacht

Coláiste de hÍde, a Gaelcholáiste (all-Irish secondary level college) was founded in 1993 in Tallaght, South Dublin in his honour. A picture as well as a collection of his books originally written in Irish are on display in the school's new building in Tymon North Park, Tallaght.[8]

Dr. Hyde Park, Roscommon

Dr. Hyde Park is the home of Roscommon GAA. Opened in 1969 it has a capacity of 30,000. It hosts many championship matches due to Roscommon's geographical positioning.

The Douglas Hyde Gallery

The Douglas Hyde Gallery is located in Trinity College, Dublin. It was opened in 1978 and it is home to many contemporary art exhibitions.

Footnotes

  1. ^ McTernan, John C. (1994). Worthies of Sligo, Profiles of Eminent Sligonians of Other Days. Sligo: Avena Publications. ISBN 0-85342-503-5. 
  2. ^ Grote, Georg. Torn Between Politics and Culture: the Gaelic League, 1893-1993.(Münster: Waxman Verlag GmbH, 1994),120.
  3. ^ Critics accused de Valera of introducing a "Catholic constitution" that discriminated against non-Catholics. In fact his constitution gave Catholicism a technically meaningless "special position" while recognising the Church of Ireland, the Presbyterian Church, the Methodist Church and others, including Irish Jews.
    This recognition and the failure of de Valera to make Roman Catholicism in Ireland the "established church" (akin to the Church of England in England) infuriated right-wing Catholic groups, such as Maria Duce, specifically those who had hounded Hyde in 1925. Even de Valera's controversial ban on divorce was publicly applauded by the Church of Ireland hierarchy.
  4. ^ Under the Constitution the President of Ireland may grant or refuse a dissolution to a Taoiseach who has "ceased to retain the support of a majority in Dáil Éireann". If a dissolution is granted, a general election is proclaimed to fill the seats now vacated by the dissolution. However, this means that for four to six weeks, until the new Dáil assembles, there is no Dáil to speak of. Fearing that this gap might facilitate a German invasion during World War II (called The Emergency in Ireland), as they would have known that no parliament could be called to deal with the invasion, the Oireachtas enacted emergency legislation (under Article 28.3.3°) - the General Elections (Emergency Powers) Act 1943 [1] - which allowed an election to be called separate from a dissolution, with the Dáil only being dissolved just before new Dáil would assemble, so ensuring the gap between Dála (plural of Dáil) would be too short to facilitate an invasion. Under the Act the President could "refuse to proclaim a general election on the advice of a Taoiseach who had ceased to retain the support of a majority in Dáil Éireann". Hyde had that option, but after considering it with his senior advisor, Michael McDunphy, he opted to grant de Valera his election request.
  5. ^ Re Article 26 of the Constitution and the Offences Against the State (Amendment) Bill, 1940 [1940] IR 470.
  6. ^ Re Article 26 of the Constitution and the School Attendance Bill, 1942 [1943] IR 334.
  7. ^ "Irish Statute Book, Acts of the Oireachtas, Offences Against the State (Amendment) Act, 1940". http://www.irishstatutebook.ie/ZZA2Y1940.html. Retrieved 2008-06-25. 
  8. ^ "Coláiste de hÍde". http://www.colaistedehide.ie. Retrieved 2008-06-25. 

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Presidential Commission
President of Ireland
1938 – 1945
Succeeded by
Seán T. O'Kelly
Preceded by
The Right Hon. Lord Glenavy
President of the College Historical Society
1931 – 1949
Succeeded by
Sir Robert W. Tate

1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

"DOUGLAS HYDE (1860-), Irish scholar and writer, known in Ireland as the Craoibhin Aoibhinn (i.e. " delightful little branch," an allegorical name for Ireland, in folk-song), was born in 1860, the youngest son of the Rev. Arthur Hyde, of Frenchpark, co. Roscommon, and nearest living representative of the Castle Hyde family of co. Cork. He was educated at Trinity College, Dublin, where he won the highest honours, and afterwards spent a year in Canada in the State University of New Brunswick. Coming back to Ireland he helped to found in 1893 the Gaelic League or Connradh na Gaedhilge, and became its first president, a position to which he was annually reelected until 1915, when he resigned. He was also first president of the National Literary Society, a post which he resigned on the foundation of the Gaelic League. As president of the elder society he had already in 1892 foreshadowed the ideals of the League in a lecture entitled " The necessity for de-anglicizing the Irish nation," not, he explained " as a protest against imitating what is best in the English people, for that would be absurd, but rather to show the folly of neglecting what is Irish, and hastening to adopt, pell-mell and indiscriminately, everything that is English, simply because it is English." For some years Dr. Hyde's work for " Irish Ireland " made little progress; but in 1899 an attack upon the Irish language, before a Vice-regal Committee to inquire into intermediate education, gave him his chance. He produced letters which he had procured from all the leading Celtic scholars in Europe as to the value of the language and literature, and the publication of these letters and his own evidence saved the language on the Intermediate Board, and attracted a great deal of attention throughout Ireland. Towards the beginning of the century the first Oireachtas was held in Dublin; it was the equivalent of the Welsh Eisteddfod, and became an annual event, and from this time forward the movement (which had now added to its aims a new clause - the support of Irish industries) began to go forward of its own momentum. In 1905 Dr. Hyde set out on a tour through America to collect money for the League, and returned after seven months with £Ii,000. On his return he was presented with the freedom of Dublin, Cork, and other cities. He was also appointed on a Royal Commission to inquire into Irish university education, including Trinity College, an institution which had been excluded from the purview of former commissions. The result of this commission was the foundation of the National University of Ireland, with three colleges (Dublin, Cork and Galway), and the Queen's University, Belfast. It was probably owing to Dr. Hyde's influence with his fellow commissioners that Trinity College, following their recommendations, established a moderatorship and gold medal in Celtic studies. He himself became professor of modern Irish in University College, Dublin.

Dr. Hyde was the first to collect the Love Songs of Connacht, which he published in 1894, and which he translated into verse and also into the sort of English prose afterwards adopted by Lady Gregory and by Synge. He was also the first to collect Irish folk-lore in the original; and his many volumes, some in Irish and some with English or French translations, will always be of value to the folklorist. He was also almost the first to turn to short plays in Irish as a method of popularizing the language. The first of these, The Twisting of the Rope, was produced in the Gaiety theatre, Dublin, in 1901, the author himself acting the principal role. His Literary History of Ireland (1899) had gone through seven impressions by 1921.


<< Arthur Wollaston Hutton

Sir Mir Osman Ali Khan Hyderabad >>


Simple English

Dubhghlas de hÍde
Douglas Hyde
File:Douglas Hyde - Project Gutenberg eText


In office
25 June 1938 – 24 June 1945
Preceded by None
Succeeded by Séan T Ó Ceallaigh

Born 17 January 1860(1860-01-17)
Castlerea, County Roscommon
Died July 12, 1949 (aged 89)
Dublin, Ireland
Political party all-party nomination
Spouse Lucy Cometina Kurtz
Profession UCD professor; Irish language activist

Douglas Hyde (or Dubhghlas de hÍde[1] Born January 17 1860 Died July 12 1949[2]) was the first President of Ireland from 1938 to 1945. He founded the Gaelic League, one of the most influential cultural organisations in Ireland. He promoted use of the Irish language, using the Irish spelling of his name and the pseudonym "An Craoibhin Aoibhinn"

Contents

Background

Hyde was born at Longford House in Castlerea in County Roscommon, while his mother was on a short visit there. His father, Arthur Hyde, was a Church of Ireland rector.[3]. He became fascinated with hearing the old people in the locality speak the Irish language. At the time the Irish language was looked down on seen as backward and old-fashioned.

He founded the Gaelic League, or in Irish, Conradh na Gaeilge, in the hope of saving it from extinction in 1893.

Conradh na Gaeilge

The league was set up to encourage the Irish culture, music, dances, and language. Many of the new generation of Irish leaders who played a central role in the fight for Irish independence in the early twentieth century, including Patrick Pearse, Éamon de Valera (who married his Irish teacher Sinéad Flanagan), Michael Collins, and Ernest Blythe first became passionate about Irish independence through their involvement in Conradh na Gaeilge or (Gaelic League).

Hyde himself was uncomfortable at the league becoming political instead of cultural and resigned as its president in 1915. He was replaced by the radical political activist and Irish-language teacher, Patrick Pearse (1879-1916). Pearse led the Easter Rising, and his election showed that the league had been infiltrated by the Irish Republican Brotherhood, just like the Irish Volunteers and the Gaelic Athletic Association)

Senator

Hyde had no association with Sinn Féin or the Independence movement. But he did accept an appointment to the senate, part of the Irish Free State parliament.

In November 1925 he lost the election to the senate because of lies about his support for divorce (in fact he was anti-divorce) and his Protestantism.

He became Professor of Irish at University College Dublin, where one of his students was future Attorney-General and President of Ireland, Cearbhall Ó Dálaigh.

President of Ireland

In April 1938 he was retired, but Taoiseach Éamon de Valera appointed him to Seanad Éireann. He was not a Senator for very long, because he was chosen to be first President of Ireland.

  • Both the Taoiseach, Éamon de Valera and the Leader of the Opposition, W. T. Cosgrave were admirers of his;
  • Both wanted to apologise for the lies others told about him in 1925;
  • Both wanted someone who would show that the new president would not be a dictator in Ireland. Many were afraid of this when the new constitution was being discussed in 1937;
  • Both wanted to pay tribute to Hyde's Conradh na Gaeilge role in achieving Irish independence.
  • Both wanted to choose a non-Catholic to show that the new Ireland was a not ruled by the Catholic church.[4]

Hyde was inaugurated as the first President of Ireland in June 1938 and moved into the old "Vice Regal Lodge", the old home of the British Lords Lieutenant of Ireland. The lodge was also used by Governors General of the Irish Free State. Hyde renamed it the House of the President or Áras an Uachtaráin.

Hyde said the Presidential oath of office in Irish. The recording of his Roscommon dialect is one of the few recordings of the dialect, which has now died out.

"Fine and scholarly old gentleman" says F.D.R.

Hyde was a popular president. United States President Franklin D. Roosevelt called him a "fine and scholarly old gentleman". President Hyde and King George VI corresponded about stamp collecting. (George VI was legally King of Ireland until 1 April 1949 [5])

However in April 1940 he suffered a massive stroke. Plans were made for his lying-in-state and state funeral, but to the surprise of everyone he survived, albeit paralysed and having to use a wheelchair.


President Hyde twice asked the Supreme Court, if a bill was Constitutional (so that the Bill in question can be signed into law).

On the first occasion, the court held that the Bill referred - Offences Against the State (Amendment) Bill, 1940- was Constitutional.[6]

The second reference, the Court decided that the particular provision referred - section 4 of the School Attendance Bill, 1942 - was "repugnant to the Constitution".[7] and told the Dáil he was refusing to sign it.

Retirement and death

Hyde left office on 25 June 1945. Due to his ill-health he did not return to his Roscommon home Ratra. Instead he was moved into the former Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant's residence in the grounds of Áras an Uachtaráin, which he renamed Little Ratra and where he lived out the remaining four years of his life. He died quietly at 10pm on 12 July 1949, aged 89.

State funeral

File:Douglas Hyde St Patrick's Cathedral Dublin 2006 Kaihsu
Memorial to Douglas Hyde in St. Patrick's Cathedral, Dublin.

As a former President of Ireland he was given a state funeral. As an Anglican his funeral service took place in Dublin's Church of Ireland St. Patrick's Cathedral. But the Catholic Church did not let Roman Catholics attend services in Anglican churches. As a result all but one member of the Catholic cabinet, Dr. Noel Browne, remained outside the cathedral while Hyde's funeral took place. They then joined the cortège when his coffin left the cathedral. Éamon de Valera, by now Leader of the Opposition, was represented by a senior Fianna Fáil figure who was a member of the Church of Ireland, Erskine Childers, a future President of Ireland himself. Hyde was buried in County Roscommon, where he had spent most of his childhood life.

Footnotes

  1. President of Ireland
  2. http://www.britannica.com/eb/article-9041691/Douglas-Hyde Retrived on [[10 October 2007
  3. McTernan, John C. (1994). Worthies of Sligo, Profiles of Eminent Sligonians of Other Days. Sligo: Avena Publications. ISBN 0-85342-503-5. 
  4. Critics accused de Valera of introducing a "Catholic constitution" that discriminated against non-Catholics. In fact his constitution gave Catholicism a technically meaningless "special position" while recognising the Church of Ireland, the Presbyterian Church, the Methodist Church and others, including Irish Jews.
    This recognition and the failure of de Valera to make Roman Catholicism in Ireland the "established church" (akin to the Church of England in England) infuriated right-wing Catholic groups, such as Maria Duce, specifically those who had hounded Hyde in 1925. Even de Valera's controversial ban on divorce was publicly applauded by the Church of Ireland hierarchy.
  5. The Republic of Ireland Act, 1948 Act number 22/1948 of 21 December 1948
  6. Re Article 26 of the Constitution and the Offences Against the State (Amendment) Bill, 1940 [1940] IR 470.
  7. Re Article 26 of the Constitution and the School Attendance Bill, 1942 [1943] IR 334.

Other websites

Political offices
Preceded by
Presidential Commission
President of Ireland
1938 – 1945
Succeeded by
Séan T Ó Ceallaigh
Preceded by
The Right Hon Lord Glenavy
President of the
College Historical Society

1931 – 1949
Succeeded by
Sir Robert W. Tate

Advertisements






Got something to say? Make a comment.
Your name
Your email address
Message