New book rediscovers Dublin wit and satire of a century ago

Dublin City Council’s Public Libraries have announced the publication of a new book which promises to offer the reader an irreverent take on a tumultuous period in Irish History.
 
James Curry and Ciarán Wallace’s new book Thomas Fitzpatrick and The Lepracaun Cartoon Monthly 1905-1915 will introduce a new generation of readers to the work of Thomas Fitzpatrick owner and chief cartoonist of the ‘Lepracaun’ monthly which was a best seller on Dublin’s news-stands a century ago.
 
The monthly satirised the leading politicians, publicans, clerics, suffragettes, trade unionists and industrialists of its day for the price of a penny. It also countered the ape-like Irishman and the noble figure of ‘Pat’ that featured in the contemporary London publication Punch.
 
Dublin’s Deputy Lord Mayor Cllr. Larry O’Toole will launch the new book at Dublin City Library & Archive, 136-144 Pearse St, Dublin 2 tonight, Thursday 19th February, at 6pm. He says “This new publication reminds us of how courageously the ‘Lepracaun’ took aim at the vested interests of its day. At a time when some would seek to question the value of satire in society I congratulate the book's authors and Dublin City Council’s library service for publishing this book.”
 
Author James Curry says, “in a decade when separatists, suffragettes, home rulers and unionists were battling for Ireland’s future – the ‘Lepracaun’s’ cartoonists were spoilt for choice.”
 
His co-author Ciarán Wallace says “The ‘Lepracaun’ lampooned it all: the arrival of the motor-car, Dublin’s slums and hilarious fashions in hats appear alongside votes for women, workers’ rights and the Ulster Crisis.”
 
Today’s readers can revisit these times and Thomas Fitzpatrick’s enduring satire by borrowing the book from libraries in Dublin city. The book is also widely on sale and available online from www.fourcourtspress.ie
 
Ends
 
Dublin City Council Media Relations Office T. (01) 222 2170, M. 087 740 0277. https://twitter.com/DubCityCouncil www.facebook.com/DublinCityCouncil
 
Notes to the editor
 
This is what the Evening Herald had to say on the death of Thomas Fitzpatrick on 16th July 1912
“From its inception the [Lepracaun Cartoon Monthly] grew in popularity mainly by the aid of Mr. Fitzpatrick’s pen. At times satirical, at moments even bitterly sarcastic (though there was no bitterness in the man himself, for above all, he possessed one of the most genial personalities in the world) on other occasions delightfully humorous, and with all the innate wit of the Celtic race, he was always the highest standard. In short, he brought to bear in the portrayal of his art all that was best in the branch to which he chose to devote himself. More could be said, but little more conveyed as to what Mr. Fitzpatrick did to raise the tone of what was generally known to the public as cartoons.”
 
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