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Editor: John Cunningham

This collection offers important new insights across a broad range of topics relating to medicine in Early Modern Ireland. Of particular note is the substantial attention devoted to the years before 1750, a period that has been relatively neglected in studies of Irish medicine. The book brings together an exciting selection of established scholars, such as Peter Elmer and Clodagh Tait, as well as a number of early career historians. Their work effectively situates Irish medicine in relation to long-term social and cultural change on the island, as well as to appropriate international contexts, encompassing Britain, Europe and the Atlantic World. The chapters also engage in various ways with important aspects of the historiography of medicine in the twenty-first century. Among the key subjects addressed by the contributors are Gaelic medicine, warfare, the impact of new medical ideas, migration, patterns of disease, midwifery and childbirth, book collecting, natural history, and urban medicine. A common thread running through the chapters is the focus on medical practitioners. The book accordingly enables significant new understanding of the character of medical practise in Early Modern Ireland. This collection will be of interest to academics and students of the history of Early Modern medicine. It also contains much that will be essential reading for historians of Ireland.

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Print, reading and social change in early modern Ireland

Traditionally our understanding of that world has been filtered through the lenses of war, plantation and colonisation. This book explores the lives of people living in early modern Ireland through the books and printed ephemera which they bought, borrowed or stole from others. In economic terms, the technology of print was of limited significance in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Ireland, employing no more than a handful of individuals on a full-time basis. It uses the perspective of the world of print as a vantage point from which to observe the shifts in early modern Irish society. To do this it exploits two important attributes of print. First, the printed word had a material form and hence by examining how it was created, traded and owned as a commodity it is possible to chart some of the economic changes that took place in early modern Ireland as a traditional exchange economy gave way to a more commercial one. The second important attribute of print was that it had the potential to transmit ideas. The book discusses the social context of print, its social meaning, and with what contemporaries thought of the material and intellectual commodity that printing with movable type brought to Ireland. It also attempts to construct how contemporaries used the books they had bought, borrowed, stolen or heard others read aloud. The efforts of booksellers and others ensured that contemporaries had a range of books to which they could to turn for profit and pleasure according to their needs.

Author: Tamsin Badcoe

This book offers a new approach to engaging with the representation and aesthetics of provisional knowledge in Edmund Spenser’s writing via a focus on his use of spatial images. The study takes advantage of recent interdisciplinary interests in the spatial qualities of early modern thought and culture, and considers literature concerning the art of cosmography and navigation alongside imaginative literature in order to identify shared modes and preoccupations. The book looks to the work of cultural and historical geographers in order to gauge the roles that aesthetic subjectivity and the imagination play in the development of geographical knowledge – contexts ultimately employed by the study to achieve a better understanding of the place of Ireland in Spenser’s writing. The study also engages with recent ecocritical approaches to literary environments, such as coastlines, wetlands, and islands, in order to frame fresh readings of Spenser’s handling of mixed genres.

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John Cunningham

Ulster University. Yet despite the increased range and intensity of research, Cox rightly acknowledged that ‘there remain some very basic lacunae in our knowledge, especially in relation to periods before 1800’. 16 The following collection of chapters addresses some of these lacunae. One substantial effort to explore aspects of the history of medicine in Early Modern Ireland was the collection of essays edited by James Kelly and Fiona Clark and published in 2010: Ireland and Medicine in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth

in Early Modern Ireland and the world of medicine
The evidence of the Youghal parish registers
Clodagh Tait

sources of information are so hard to come by as in the case of Early Modern Ireland, even an impressionistic picture is better than nothing at all. The focus here is on the surviving Church of Ireland registers of the town of Youghal, Co. Cork, dating from the mid-1660s to 1720, which directly and indirectly reveal information on medicine, illness and mortality in a middle-sized provincial town. 6 These registers are all the more valuable as despite an increasing volume of publications on the medical history of Early Modern

in Early Modern Ireland and the world of medicine
Raymond Gillespie

read the Bible, and lawyers and politicians thought they knew how statutes could best be read. These social, political, economic, institutional and cultural frames which surrounded both reading and printing provide a point of departure in understanding the world of print in early modern Ireland. I In 1689 the Cork Williamite and future lord chancellor of Ireland Richard Cox, passing his exile from Jacobite-controlled Ireland in London, wrote a history of his native country. He concluded his address to the reader in the second part of the history, which dealt with the

in Reading Ireland
John Cunningham

insights into the situation in the 1640s. The Westminster committee’s resolutions from August 1642 and an enormous quantity of additional information concerning the rebellion in Ireland are preserved in the same archive: the 1641 depositions. The depositions are the best known and most controversial source for the history of Early Modern Ireland. They comprise around 8,000 witness statements and related material concerning the Irish rebellion of 1641 and its aftermath. 2 For centuries after the event, the depositions were

in Early Modern Ireland and the world of medicine
Philomena Gorey

be employed by [the] world whether they keep truth cleare & keep up their testimonys for [the] Lord in faithfulness & whether any such be present at their sprinkling of children & at their gossip feasts, & receive their offerings money, w[hi]ch at such time is usually given, if any be found to practice such things, they are to be reproved and admonished. 21 The confessional divisions within Early Modern Ireland meant that the necessity of performing the sacrament according to

in Early Modern Ireland and the world of medicine
A historiographical essay
Ethan H. Shagan

with considerable theoretical acuity the ideological pitfalls of either emphasising or deemphasising violence.3 My claim to novelty, then, is two-fold. First, I write not as an Irish historian but as an historian of early modern Britain and Europe, in hope that an oblique angle may offer some useful perspective to Irish historical studies; for indeed, as John Morrill has written, the escalating violence of early modern Ireland ‘makes Irish history look much more like continental European history’.4 Second, I want to think explicitly about the problem of violence as

in Ireland, 1641
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Mills and acts
Coleman A. Dennehy

was presented with a situation far more daunting, a task far more arduous, but he managed to put together a (albeit far from perfect) land settlement that promoted and preserved Protestant ascendancy and provided the monarchy with an eventual exchequer surplus, something which early modern Ireland had seldom, if ever, experienced. 176 This is not to suggest for a moment that the fortunes of the early and late Stuart monarchy revolved around the Irish Parliament’s ability to initiate legislation, more that Dublin Castle’s attitudes towards initiation of legislation

in The Irish Parliament, 1613–89