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The Irish Classical SelfPoets and Poor Scholars in the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries$
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Laurie O’Higgins

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198767107

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198767107.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 27 September 2021

Books in Their Hands

Books in Their Hands

(p.37) 2 Books in Their Hands
The Irish Classical Self

Laurie O’Higgins

Oxford University Press

This chapter surveys evidence for classical texts in eighteenth-century hands, and considers how people of modest means might have had access to Greek and Latin books. Evidence includes booksellers’ ledgers, inventories of libraries, port books, and reports of book confiscations at ports of entry. Greek and Latin texts, grammars, and conversational exercises were printed in Ireland in the eighteenth century. Texts like Fénelon’s Les Aventures de Télémaque, representing a strain of radical thinking inspired by the classical world, found a sympathetic audience in Ireland. The story of Constantia Grierson, the wife of the King’s Printer, George Grierson, is a remarkable example of classical erudition in a woman of modest birth.

Keywords:   Greek, Latin, Constantia Grierson, Fénelon, Les Aventures de Télémaque

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