Joseph M. Hone letters to Hylda Wrench
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Irish intellectual and author Joseph M. (Joseph Maunsell) Hone (1882-1959) was a significant figure in the Irish Literary Revival of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. He wrote works on a variety of topics, whose contributions to Irish philosophical, artistic, and political life include an authorized biography on William Butler Yeats, titledWilliam Butler Yeats: the poet in contemporary Ireland (1942), a history co-written with Page Dickinson titled Persia in Revolution (1910) as well as several books on Irish nationalism.
The son of a wealthy merchant family in Dublin, Joseph M. Hone was educated at Wellington and Cambridge. Subsequently, he established himself in the literary world, co-founding the publishing house Maunsel & Company, which became one of Ireland's largest publishing houses, and editing the journalThe Shanachie: An Illustrated Irish Miscellany , which included a host of his contemporaries such as William Butler Yeats and George Bernard Shaw. Early in his career, Joseph M. Hone was known for his translation of Daniel Halevy's Life of Nietzsche (1911). Hone's later writing is mainly biographical. In 1951, he became president of the Irish Academy of Letters. He died in Dublin in 1959.
Boylan, Henry. 1988. "Hone, Joseph Maunsel (1882-1959)."A Dictionary of Irish Biography. New York: St. Martin's Press, 162-3."Joseph Hone."Ricorso. http://www.ricorso.net/rx/az-data/authors/h/Hone_J/life.htm (accessed September 30, 2014).
Born Hylda Henrietta Brooke (1879-1955), she was the daughter of the Anglo-Irish baronet, Victor Alexander Brooke (1843-1891). She was briefly married to the baronet Sir Frederick des Voeux (1857-1937) before marrying Sir (John) Evelyn Leslie Wrench (1882-1966). A devotee of Irish theater and literature, Hylda Wrench also wrote several articles in her lifetime collected inReflections (1956) a memorial volume.
"Hylda Henrietta Brooke."The Peerage. http://www.thepeerage.com/p18145.htm (accessed September 30, 2014).
Irish literary critic and biographer Joseph M. (Joseph Maunsell) Hone (1882-1959) wrote ten letters to Hylda Henrietta Wrench (1879-1955), discussing current literature and Irish theatre. A poem, entitled "Mars," mentioned in the letters and written in Hone's hand is included.
Hone and Wrench's shared enthusiasm for the literary scene, especially the authors associated with the burgeoning Irish Literary Revival, played a central role in their correspondence. In the letters, Hone wrote at length about poets ranging from Walt Whitman to William Blake to Alice Meynell (her sonnet "Renouncement" received special attention). Hone made reference to an array of works that accompanied the letters, which they lent one another from their book collections. In addition to books, Hone sent Wrench his copies of contemporary literary journals, specifically naming Standish O'Grady'sAll Ireland Review . On several occasions in the letters, Hone brought up William Butler Yeats and the Abbey theatre, mentioning a particular performance of J. M. Synge's Deirdre of the Sorrows (1910) that drew a "fine audience," including authors associated with his quarterly, The Shanachie . Aside from literature, the letters touched upon the larger art scene with a brief discussion of Max Beerbohm's book of caricatures, The Poet's Corner (1896).
The letters bear additional notes written in the hand of Hylda Wrench. The notes vary from occasional clarifications to extended explanations of the context of certain letters. On one letter, she wrote at length about a conversation between her and Hone concerning the definition of art, in which he quoted Nietzsche. Her commentary serves as a gloss on an oblique reference in Hone's letter to Coventry Patmore's poem, "The Toys."
Boxes 5, F0109: Shelved in SPEC MSS 0099
Purchase, August 1987.
Processed and encoded by Sean Lovitt, October 2014.
- Hone, Joseph M. (Joseph Maunsell), 1882-1959
- Hone, Joseph M. (Joseph Maunsell), 1882-1959--Correspondence
- Wrench, Hylda Henrietta, 1879-1955--Correspondence
- Wrench, Hylda Henrietta, 1879-1955
- Authors, Irish--20th century--Correspondence
- English drama--Irish authors--20th century
- Theater--Ireland--History--20th century
- University of Delaware Library Special Collections
- Finding Aid Author
- University of Delaware Library, Special Collections
- Finding Aid Date
- 2014 October 1
- Access Restrictions
The collection is open for research.
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Includes Hone's handwritten poem "Mars."
The year of the letter is not specified, but Hone's reference to J. M. Synge's playDeirdre of the Sorrows dates the letter to circa 1910, when the first production was held at the Abbey Theatre.