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Edmund Burke, Volume I1730-1784$
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F.P. Lock

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780199226634

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199226634.001.0001

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Growing Up Irish, 1730–1744

Growing Up Irish, 1730–1744

(p.xvi) (p.1) 1 Growing Up Irish, 1730–1744
Edmund Burke, Volume I

F.P. Lock

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses Edmund Burke's Irish upbringing and his childhood. Burke was born in Dublin, in January 1730, about three months after the publication of Jonathan Swift's A Modest Proposal. He grew up in the shadow of the conditions that Swift described — an Ireland overshadowed by social and economic ills. Growing up in the 1730s and 1740s, he saw real poverty. Burke's early years were unusual. He experienced the life and culture of each of Ireland's chief religious groups: the Anglicans, the Catholics, and the Protestant Dissenters represented by the Quakers. His Irish upbringing conditioned in important ways the development of his mind and ideas. Growing up in Ireland, his earliest impressions of human life and society were far removed from those he would have absorbed in England or in Scotland. Just as he never lost his Irish accent, he never forgot his Irishness.

Keywords:   Burke, Ireland, Swift, childhood, Dublin

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