Charles Maturin: The Wild Irish Boy

(1199 words)
  • Christina Morin (Trinity College Dublin )

Charles Robert Maturin’s second novel, The Wild Irish Boy (1808), has been pejoratively declared a “bizarre imitation” of Sydney Owenson’s then recently published and highly successful work, The Wild Irish Girl (1806) (Flanagan 46). Judging from the title, this certainly seems to be the case, leading both Maturin’s contemporaries and later critics to understand The Wild Irish Boy as an obvious imitation of Owenson, undertaken in a bid to capitalise on her success. Owenson’s pioneering novel – now typically understood as the first Irish national tale – responded to the Anglo-Irish Union of 1801 and attempted both to ‘introduce’ I…

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Morin, Christina. "The Wild Irish Boy". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 26 August 2007
[, accessed 06 July 2015.]