Prout, Daniel (1757–1830), priest, was born in Gragaugh, Ballygarry, Co. Tipperary. Nothing is known of his parents. He was educated in the Irish College in Paris before returning to work in his native diocese. After serving as curate for a time to his uncle, Fr Cashin, parish priest of Moycarkey, he was curate in Bansha 1792–9. On 10 September 1799 he was appointed administrator at the parish of Anacarty with an obligation of paying twenty-five guineas a year to his predecessor, Fr Denis O'Heffernan, who had resigned. Prout wrote that he did not consider himself parish priest of Anacarty, but only in care of it, until he received a collation from the archbishop. This was never forthcoming, and in 1804 Archbishop Thomas Bray (qv) took, for the newly formed parish of Kilcommon, a number of townlands in Donohill parish from Prout, who protested and then resigned, declaring that ‘no such injustice has been perpetuated since the partition of Poland’ (Skehan, 241). In 1806 he transferred to Cork to become parish priest of Ardnageehy, probably through the influence of a prominent citizen, David Barry of Lisgoold, who was married to his niece. A zealous priest, Prout immediately began the construction of a new church at Meenane and in 1827 commenced the parish register, which has not survived. He was, however, most noted for his eccentricity. A sermon he preached in the 1820s was later published in the Cork Constitution (24 Aug. 1875); in it he persuades his congregation, in colourful vernacular, that the poor referred to in the scriptures are not beggars nor cripples but the clergy, ‘many a time wearing a threadbare black coat, white at the seams and out at the elbows’. He died on 25 July 1830 and was buried in the family plot of the Barrys in Ballinalty graveyard.
His name achieved remarkable posthumous fame through Francis Sylvester Mahony (qv), whose celebrated Reliques of Father Prout first appeared in Fraser's Magazine between 1833 and 1860. Mahony, a native of Cork who was ordained about 1828, came in contact with Prout in the late 1820s. After forsaking the priesthood, he commenced writing the ‘reliques’, alleging to have come upon them in a trunk belonging to the deceased priest. This deception was accepted for a number of years; Prout was considered eccentric enough to have written Mahony's ‘poignant mixture of toryism, classicism, sarcasm, and punch’ (Kent, xix).