A Memory of Synge

  • W. B. Yeats


A correspondent has sent me the following little essay with the comment ‘A short time ago I read Synge’s life, and it seemed to me rather lacking in the personal touch, so I wrote down these few memories.’1 Where we have so little with that ‘touch,’ I am grateful as an old friend of Synge’s, and I have asked the Irish Statesman to put the essay into print that it may remain for some future biographer. John Synge was a very great man, and in time to come every passing allusion that recalls him, whether in old newspaper articles or in old letters, will be sought out that historians of literature may mould, or try to mould, some simple image of the man. Even before the war, invention had begun, for a tolerably well-known American journalist, who had never been under the same roof with Synge, or even set eyes upon him, published scenes and conversations, that were all, from no malicious intention but because of his gross imagination, slander and travesty. He based all upon what he supposed the inventor of so many violent and vehement peasants must be like, knowing so little of human character that he described, without knowing it, Synge’s antithesis. I have left my correspondent’s notes as they came from her unpractised hand, trivial and important alike. That praise of Wordsworth, for instance, is nothing in itself.


Newspaper Article Human Character Front Door Simple Image Love Affair 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 1977

Authors and Affiliations

  • W. B. Yeats

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations