Biographies A-Z

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Murphy, Patrick

Murphy, Patrick (1834–62), ‘world's tallest man’ and fairground performer, was born 15 June 1834 in Killowen, Co. Down, son of James Murphy (d. c.1850), smallholder, and Peggy Murphy (née Cunningham). There was nothing exceptional about his physique as a child. An…

Murphy, Paul Aloysius

Murphy, Paul Aloysius (1887–1938), plant pathologist, was born 22 February 1887 at Ballybur, Cuffesgrange, Co. Kilkenny, son of James Murphy, farmer, and Julia Murphy (née Mackey). He attended St Kieran's College, Kilkenny, before attending the Albert Agricultural College,…

Murphy, Robert

Murphy, Robert (1806–43), mathematician, was born in Mallow, Co. Cork, fifth son among seven sons and three daughters of John Murphy, shoemaker and Church of Ireland parish clerk in Mallow, and his wife Margaret (maiden name unknown). His father died (1814), leaving the family…

Murphy, Seamus

Murphy, Seamus (1907–75), sculptor, was born 15 July 1907 at Greenhill, Burnfort, near Mallow, Co. Cork, one of five sons of James Murphy, engine driver, and Margaret Murphy (née Sheehan); four daughters died in infancy. While he was still a young child the family moved to Cork city…

Murphy, Seán Anthony

Murphy, Seán Anthony (1896–1964), diplomat, was born 3 August 1896 at 40 South Parade, Waterford city, eldest son of Patrick A. Murphy, solicitor, and Catherine Murphy (née Doyle), both originally of Kilkenny. He was educated at Clongowes Wood College, Co. Kildare, and…

Murphy, Seán Óg (‘Jackie’)

Murphy, Seán Óg (‘Jackie’) (1892–1956), hurler, was born 31 October 1892 at Windmill Road, Cork city, son of James Murphy, carrier, and Bridget Murphy (née Walsh). Originally named John Francis Murphy, he became known as ‘Seán Óg’ at an early age. He was educated locally at the…

Murphy, Sheila Geraldine Mary

Murphy, Sheila Geraldine Mary (1898–1983), diplomat, was born 28 December 1898 at 18 Harcourt St., Dublin, elder daughter and fourth among five children of Dr. John Joseph Murphy, physician and surgeon (b. Carlow c.1841), and Louisa Murphy (née Dickson; b. Tyrone c.

Murphy, Thomas

Murphy, Thomas (1915–97), academic and president of UCD, was born 3 December 1915 in Bunclody, Co. Wexford, elder of two sons of John Murphy, farmer, and Mary Murphy (née Doyle). A sister of the two boys died in childhood. Educated…

Murphy, Thomas (‘Tommy’)

Murphy, Thomas (‘Tommy’) (1921–85), Gaelic footballer, was born in Graiguecullen, Queen's Co. (Laois). Educated at Graiguecullen national school and Knockbeg College, he played for the Laois minor team aged 15, made his senior football debut for Laois in 1937 while still at school,…

Murphy, Timothy Joseph

Murphy, Timothy Joseph (1893–1949), politician, was born 17 July 1893 in Clondrohid, Co. Cork, son of Timothy Murphy, carpenter, and Mary Murphy (née Shea). Educated at Clondrohid and Macroom national schools, he worked as a journalist for a time. Initially a political supporter of…

Murphy, William

Murphy, William (1771–1849), businessman and political adviser, was listed as a salesmaster (cattledealer) at 48 Smithfield, Dublin, from 1795. According to Miles Byrne (qv), who later knew him well, he was so trusted by the United Irish…

Murphy, William

Murphy, William (1834–72), demagogue, was born at Castletown Conyers, Co. Limerick, eldest son among seven children of Michael Murphy, Roman catholic headmaster of the local national school, and his wife. When he was a child his father converted to protestantism, and when this was…

Murphy, William Lombard

Murphy, William Lombard (1876–1943), surgeon and newspaper proprietor, was born 1 October 1876 in Rathmines, Dublin, eldest of nine children of William Martin Murphy (qv), architect, politician, and founder of Independent…

Murphy, William Martin

Murphy, William Martin (1845–1919), businessman, was born on 6 January 1845 at Derrymihan, near Castletownbere, Co. Cork, son of Denis William Murphy, building contractor, and his wife, Mary Anne (née Martin). His solitary and austere personality was influenced by his status as an only…

Murray, Adam

Murray, Adam (d. 1706), soldier and hero of the siege of Derry, was probably of a Scots family, originally from Philiphaugh in Selkirkshire and settled for one or two generations at Ling near Claudy, Co. Londonderry; several versions of his antecedents have been offered. Nothing…

Murray, Alfred

Murray, Alfred (1914–99), GAA footballer and administrator, was born 24 December 1914 in Dromore, Co. Down, son of James Murray, national school principal, and Isabel Murray (née Campbell). He attended primary school locally at Dromore and Derrymacash before winning a scholarship to…

Murray, Charles Henry

Murray, Charles Henry (1917–2008), civil servant and governor of the Central Bank of Ireland, was born 29 January 1917 in Dublin to Charles Murray and his wife Teresa (née Duke). Educated at Synge Street CBS, Dublin, he reluctantly…

Murray, Daniel

Murray, Daniel (1768–1852), archbishop of Dublin, was born 18 April 1768 near Arklow, Co. Wicklow, fourth son of Thomas Murray, a prosperous tenant of Lord Wicklow, and Judith Murray. Baptised in Redross chapel, he received his early education locally. In about 1776 he was sent to…

Murray, James Andrew

Murray, James Andrew (1840–1921), businessman, was born in 1840 in Co. Clare, the eldest of five sons and one daughter of Michael Murray and his wife Ann (née MacNamara), of whom little is known. The family emigrated to Canada about 1845, and in 1858 at age eighteen, James left for the…

Murray, John Fisher

Murray, John Fisher (1811–65), journalist and nationalist, was born in February 1811 in Belfast, the eldest son of the eminent physician and chemist James Murray (qv), and his wife Margaret (née Sherlock). A catholic, he was educated…

Murray, (Joseph) Vivian

Murray, (Joseph) Vivian (1932–2009), public servant, was born on 22 July 1932 at 26 William Street, Clonmel, Co. Tipperary, one of six children of Jeremiah Murray, carpenter, and his wife Mary (née Lynch). After attending the local CBS, he worked in the town's post office as a…

Murray, Laurence Patrick, ('Larry'), (Ó Muireadhaigh, Lorcán)

Murray, Laurence Patrick, ('Larry'), (Ó Muireadhaigh, Lorcán) (1883–1941), priest, historian and Irish-language activist, was born 8 June 1883 in Newry Street, Carlingford, Co. Louth, the eldest of seven surviving children (four sons and three daughters) of James Murray, a member of…

Murray, Nicholas

Murray, Nicholas (1802–61), presbyterian minister in the USA, was born 25 December 1802 in Ballynaskeagh, Co. Westmeath, or near Ballinasloe, Co. Galway. All that is known of his family background is that his father, Nicholas Murray, a Roman catholic farmer, wanted him to become a…

Murray, Patrick Aloysius

Murray, Patrick Aloysius (1811–82), theologian, was born at Clones, Co. Monaghan, on 18 November 1811, the fourth of eight children of Philip Murray, a farmer and shopowner, and his wife, Mary (née Corley). His father was prosperous enough to be able to educate three sons for the…

Murray, Paul Finbarre

Murray, Paul Finbarre (1905–81), rugby player, was born 29 June 1905 in Sandycove, Dublin, one of nine children of Hugh C. Murray, chief transfer clerk of the Great Northern Railway, and Josephine A. Murray (née Farrell). Educated at Blackrock College and the…