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The Connollys

A Nest of

Irish Rebels


Mícheál Ó Conghaile


ISBN: 978-1-911131-39-7


eBook: 978-1-911131-72-4


Price: €14.00








About the Book:


A potted version of Irish history and how a family, the Connollys coped with a background of turbulent times in Ireland in the late 19th and early 20th Century.  How ordinary people get caught up in events over which they had little or no control and how they responded to such events.  The family’s reaction to an eviction, the 1913 lockout, the 1916 Easter Rising, death, imprisonment, the War of Independence, the Civil War and its aftermath.  If offers a critical retrospective analysis of what has happened in Ireland since Independence up to the present day.


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This is the true story about an ordinary Irish family, the Connollys, who were caught up in historical events at the end of the nineteenth century and during the early years of the twentieth century. Many members of the family were involved in the nationalist struggle, which had its moment of glory in the Easter Rising of 1916. Each committed member played a significant role in the Rising, which resulted in the death of one of them. He was Captain Sean Connolly, the Abbey actor, who was described as “the player Connolly”, by William Butler Yeats in his poem Three Songs to the One Burden, one of the poems he wrote in response to the Easter Rising:


Who was the first man shot that day?

The player Connolly,

Close to the City Hall he died;

Carriage and voice had he;

He lacked those years that go with skill’

But later might have been

A famous, a brilliant figure

Before the painted scene.









About the Author:


Michael Connolly was born, raised and educated in Dublin Ireland.  Following a varied sales career which included selling printing and office equipment, he came to Johannesburg over thirty years ago.  He has travelled extensively in Europe, the Middle East and North America; interests include writing, art, travel, literature, history, architecture, sailing and walking.  Formerly Chairman of Writers 2000 a writer’s group in SA; and an active member of the Irish South African Association. 







Sample Excerpt:


“One day, one of the prisoners got very weak and was close to collapse.  He asked to be excused from walking and went over to a water tap in the centre of the ring where he wet his handkerchief and patted his forehead.  It was Joseph Mary Plunkett, who had been a member of the Volunteers and attached to the G.P.O. garrison.  Plunkett who was tubercular had left hospital just before the Rising after undergoing surgery on his neck glands.  He had joined his fellow rebels in the G.P.O. while still in bandages.  The night before his execution he was permitted to marry his fiancée Grace Gifford and was executed the following morning.”




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Official book launch in Liberty Hall; featuring the author, Mike Connolly, with Mrs Sabina Higgins, wife of the President of Ireland.