Mac A Liondain (Mac Giolla Fhiondáin), Padraig (c.1665–1733), poet, was probably a native of the barony of Fews, Co. Armagh, the district in which he spent his adult life. The son of Eoghan Mac a Liondain and his wife Siobhán Nic Ardail, Mac a Liondain was a prosperous farmer and it is likely that he followed his father in that occupation. His mother was the great-granddaughter of a well-known harper, and the fact that Pádraig Mac a Liondain was himself both a harper and a poet, as well as the conservative character of the language found in his work and his occasional use of loose versions of the syllabic metres formerly employed by the professional bardic poets, may be a reflection of this family connection with the aos dána, the hereditary learned class of Gaelic Ireland. Mac a Liondain extended hospitality to fellow poets from the Leinster–Ulster border region, and the figures with whom he is known to have been in contact include Séamas Dall Mac Cuarta (qv), Turlough Carolan (qv), Raghnall Dall Mac Domhnaill, Pádraig Ó Prontaigh, and Fearghas Mac Bheatha.
Mac a Liondain's formal and self-consciously literary style holds few attractions for modern readers, and his compositions may now be of greater importance for the historical insights they provide than as works of literature. More than a dozen of his compositions are extant. They include a lament for Eoghan Rua Ó Néill (qv) (‘Níl stáidbhean tséimh de Ghaelaibh beo, monuar’) in which the poet regretted the lack of a contemporary leader capable of defending Ireland as Eoghan Rua had done; a eulogy (‘A rí ler fuasclaíodh as geimheal guaise’) in praise of Hugh MacMahon (qv), catholic archbishop of Armagh 1715–37, which likened the primate's role to that of Moses when he led the people of Israel out of Egypt; a poem in praise of the composer and harper Turlough Carolan (‘Mo chreach is mo léan ó fhearta Dé’); and a piece of crosánacht (a mixture of prose and verse in satirical vein) written in response to criticisms of Ulster by a Co. Meath poet named Brian Ó Cuagáin, in which Mac a Liondain blamed the Leinstermen for refusing to help Brian Bóruma (qv) at the battle of Clontarf, for introducing the Normans to Ireland, for failing to assist Eoghan Rua Ó Néill in the 1640s, and for the treachery of Brigadier Henry Luttrell (qv) at the battle of Aughrim.
Mac a Liondain married and had at least two children, Pádraig Óg and Máire (Molly), and some songs attributed to the latter have survived. A lament (‘Dá roinntí d'ionmhas liom a theampaill’) that he composed on the death of Séamas Dall Mac Cuarta in 1732 is the only one of his works that can be accurately dated. When Mac a Liondain died in 1733 he was himself the subject of an elegy by Fearghas Mac Bheatha and was interred in Creggan churchyard, near Crossmaglen, Co. Armagh.