John Millington Synge

[J.M.] (16 April 1871 - 24 March 1909 / Newtown Villas, Rathfarnham, County Dublin)

John Millington Synge
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Edmund John Millington Synge was an Irish playwright, poet, prose writer, travel writer and collector of folklore. He was a key figure in the Irish Literary Revival and was one of the cofounders of the Abbey Theatre. He is best known for his play The Playboy of the Western World, which caused riots in Dublin during its opening run at the Abbey Theatre.

Although he came from an Anglo-Irish background, Synge's writings are mainly concerned with the world of the Roman Catholic peasants of rural Ireland and with what he saw as the essential paganism of their world view.

Synge suffered from Hodgkin's disease, a form of cancer at the time untreatable. He died just weeks short... more »

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Best Poem of John Millington Synge

In Kerry

We heard the thrushes by the shore and sea,
And saw the golden star's nativity,
Then round we went the lane by Thomas Flynn,
Across the church where bones lie out and in;
And there I asked beneath a lonely cloud
Of strange delight, with one bird singing loud,
What change you'd wrought in graveyard, rock and sea,
This new wild paradise to wake for me. . . .
Yet knew no more than knew those merry sins
Had built this stack of thigh-bones, jaws and shins.

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