Lloyd, John (Lúid, Seon) (1740?–c.1785), writer, was probably a native of Limerick. Information on his place and date of birth and family background is lacking, but the earliest datable manuscript in his hand was written in 1755. Lloyd may have been a quack physician in his youth as his announcement of a cure for gout in the Munster Journal and Spain's involvement in the seven years war inspired a song by Tomás Ó Míodhcháin (qv). Lloyd's reply, beginning ‘A chnú ghlain dar shaorshil Minerva a gealchíocha’, is his earliest datable composition. A poem that he sent from Limerick to Fr Liam Inglis (qv) at Cork in 1765 provides further evidence of contact with fellow poets. Lloyd moved to Furroor in the parish of Moyarta, near Kilkee, Co. Clare, where he taught school for several years, lodging for a time in the home of the father of Eugene O'Curry (qv). While in Moyarta he made an English translation of the Life of St Senan by Aindrias Mac Cruitín (qv). About 1773 he returned to Limerick and opened a school. While living in the city he associated with a circle of scribes that included Aindrias Mac Mathghamhna, Séamas Bonnbhíol (Bonfield), and Diarmaid Ó Maolchaoine, but in 1778 he quarrelled with Mac Mathghamhna and Bonnbhíol and left Limerick for Ennis. His friend Tomás Ó Míodhcháin tried unsuccessfully to heal the rift but Lloyd remained in Clare as private tutor in the household of Augustine Fitzgerald, land agent, at Tooreen, about 6 km from Ennis.
The texts of more than twenty poems and songs by Lloyd are extant, the Jacobite aislingí ‘Tríom shuan go sochma aréir dom’ and ‘Cois leasa dom go huaigneach’ being perhaps the most popular. The second of these was sung to the air ‘The flowers of Edinburgh’ and entered the oral tradition as well as being recorded in a large number of manuscripts. In 1780 a guide book by Lloyd was published at Ennis under the title A short tour; or an impartial and accurate description of the county of Clare. Among the features of the county described in the book was an ogham stone on Mount Callan, whose inscription Lloyd interpreted as marking the burial place of the Fenian hero Conán Maol mac Morna. The stone provided timely support for the view that Ireland rather than Scotland was the homeland of Fionn son of Cumaill (qv) and the Fianna – notwithstanding the Ossianic productions of James MacPherson – and it quickly attracted the attention of antiquaries. The ogham inscription is now known to be a late forgery, and Lloyd, along with Theophilus O'Flanagan (qv), is one of those principally suspected of perpetrating the fraud.
When Tomás Ó Míodhcháin convened a cúirt éigse or court of poetry at Ennis in April 1780 Lloyd greeted the participants in verse (‘Sláinte ó chroí agus míle fáilte’) but no work of a later date can be attributed to him with certainty. Lloyd did not marry. He was prone to excessive drinking and his body is said to have been found on the roadside near his home at Tooreen. The year of his death is not known.