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Francis Sheehy-Skeffington Portrait

Pacifist and sufragette

Francis Sheehy-Skeffington, writer and pacifist who did not take part in the Easter Rising 1916 but was unwittingly caught up in a scuffle with British soldiers and was subsequently executed.

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Francis Sheehy-Skeffington

Writer and Pacifist

Dimensions

300mm x 200mm or11 3/4 inches x 8 inches

Mounting

Precision cut double mount

Backing

High quality backing card

'COPY' on image

This does not appear on the print

Framing

Available in mahogany style frame with gold trim

Francis Sheehy-Skeffington

Francis Skeffington (1878 - 1916) from Bailieborough, County Cavan, was an Irish atheist (born Roman Catholic) suffragist and pacifist. He was a friend and schoolmate of James Joyce, Oliver St John Gogarty, Tom Kettle, and Conor Cruise O'Brien's father at the Jesuit school at St. Stephen's Green, Dublin. He was married to one of Conor Cruise O'Brien's aunts (neé Hanna Sheehy), whose own surname he adopted as part of his name, resulting in his being known as Francis Sheehy-Skeffington.

In 1916, he was executed on the orders of an Irish-born British officer, Colonel Bowen-Colthurst, who was adjudged insane for the multiple murders he committed and sent to Broadmoor briefly. During the week of the Easter Rising, as Bowen-Colthurst sought out 'Fenians', he took captive a young boy, two pro-British journalists, and a Sinn Féin politician, Richard O'Carroll, all of whom he shot to death. Bowen-Colthurst was sent to a hospital in Canada, but eventually released with a pension.

Francis Sheehy-Skeffington was survived by his wife, Hanna Sheehy-Skeffington, who became increasingly nationalist-minded, and his son, the now-deceased Owen Sheehy-Skeffington, who would eventually play a moderate role in Irish politics and who attended the traditionally Protestant and Unionist Sandford Park High School with his cousin, Conor Cruise O'Brien, because Owen's mother refused to send her son to any school with a pro-Treaty ethos.