Portrait bust, Séamus Murphy RHA (1907-75), 'Seán Ó Riordáin'

25 Aug 2020

Bronze: 'Seán Ó Riordáin', 1957, signed and dated.

Ref: T1534 © University College Cork

Sculptor: Séamus Murphy RHA (1907-1975), Irish.

Murray, Catalogue No 371 (p252, with photo): "1957, bronze, life-size, signed and dated; note: 4 bronze casts made".

Date: 1957


Seán Ó Riordáin (1916-1977)

Seán Ó Riordáin (3/12/1916-21/02/1977) was born at Ballyvourney, Co. Cork. After the death of his father in 1926, the family moved to Inniscarra in 1932. He worked in the motor taxation office in Cork from 1936 until 30/09/1965.  Stricken with pneumonia when he was thirteen, a diagnosis of tuberculosis in 1936 affected his lifelong health. His collections of poetry included: Eireaball Spideoige (1952), Brosna (1964), Línte Liombó (1971) and Tar éis mo Bháis (published posthumously in 1978). He wrote a weekly column in The Irish Times from 1967 until 1975. Ó Ríordáin was awarded an honorary D.Litt. by the National University of Ireland in 1976. Ó Riordáin died at Sarsfield’s Court Hospital, Glanmire, and is buried with his father and paternal grandparents in St Gobnait's cemetery, Ballyvourney, Co. Cork. His gravestone was carved by Séamus Murphy RHA.

His papers were purchased by UCD in 1984 and are held in the UCD Special Collections, James Joyce Library, UCD: ÓR ‘Seán Ó Riordáin Papers/Aircív Sheáin Uí Ríordáin’ (1940-77). His library is in the Boole Library, UCC ‘Ó Ríordáin Collection’, eighteen items removed from these books are accessible in Special Collections, Boole Library, BL/L/SOR, Seán Ó Riordáin Collection.


Connection with University College Cork

Appointed visiting part-time lecturer in the Department of Irish in 1969 [DIB].



Murray, Peter (ed.), Seamus Murphy 1907-1975 Sculptor (Kinsale: Produced for the Crawford Gallery of Art by Gandon Editions, 2007)

Breathnach, Diarmuid and Máire Ní Mhurchú ‘Ó Ríordáin, Seán (1916–1977)’

Ó Coileáin, Seán, ‘Ó Ríordáin, Seán’ Dictionary of Irish Biography

RTÉ Writer in Profile Seán Ó Riordáin (1970)


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