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O'Hara
O'Hara
64

a prominent part. On 21 Jan. 1775, at the same theatre, was produced O'Hara's 'Two Misers,' a musical farce, borrowed from the French (Genest, v. 462). The cast included Quick and Miss Catley. In the registry of deeds office, Dublin, under date 16 Nov. 1780, is a document by which Thomas Ryder, manager of the Theatre Royal, Crow Street, Dublin, covenanted to purchase this piece of O'Hara and produce it at his theatre. 'The Two Misers' was published in 1781. A burletta of inferior quality, 'A Fine Day,' was performed for the first time at the Haymarket on 22 Aug. 1777, with Banister as Don Buffalo. It was published in the same year. O'Hara three years later converted Fielding's 'Tom Thumb' (1733) into an opera, with original songs. It was first performed at Covent Garden on 3 Oct. 1780 (ib. vi. 186).

Before 1780, when he signed with his 'mark' the covenant with Ryder, O'Hara was completely blind, but, despite his affliction, posed as a brilliant wit and fine gentleman. He was notably tall, and was nicknamed St. Patrick's Steeple. A favourite Italian glee of the day contained the refrain 'Che no' hanno crudeltà,' and a parody on this, 'Kane O'Hara's cruel tall,' was written by a local wag, which had much popularity in Dublin as a slang song. In his old age he is described as having the appearance of 'an old fop with spectacles and an antiquated wig, yet withal a polite, sensible, agreeable man, the pink of gentility and good breeding, and an am using companion, though somewhat prosy.' O'Hara in later life moved from King Street, Dublin, to Molesworth Street; but much of his time was spent on visits to the country seats of his friends. He died on 17 June 1782 in Dublin. He left no will.

Among the songs composed by Torlogh O'Carolan [q. v.] on Sligo men from whom he had received, hospitality is one entitled 'Kian O'Hara.' A translation from the Irish, by Furlong, of another — 'The Cup of O'Hara' — appears in Hardiman's ' Irish Minstrelsy ' (vol. i. p. viii).

O'Hara, like O'Keeffe, was also gifted as an artist; his etching of Dr. William King, the learned Anglican archbishop of Dublin, was copied by Richardson. O'Hara's own portrait is still at Annaghmore, the seat of is family in co. Sligo.

A skit called 'Grigri, translated from the Japanese into Portuguese,' and clearly shown to be O'Hara's, was first published in the 'Dublin Monthly Magazine' for 1832. 'Irish Varieties' by J. D. Herbert, whose real name was Dowling, assigns to O'Hara the Dublin slang song, 'The night before Larry was stretched;' but we know, on the authority of Thomas Moore, that the writer was the Rev. Dr. Burroughes.

[Recollections of John O'Keeffe; Register of Trinity Coll. Dublin; Reminiscences of Michael Kelly; Biographia Dramatica, Dublin, 1782; Gilbert's Dublin; Archdeacon O'Rorke's Hist, of Sligo; Registry of Deeds Office, Dublin; Records of the Irish Probate Court; letter from Caldwell to Garrick, 3 June 1766; Manuscript Account-book of Kane O'Hara in possession of the present writer; Irish Monthly Mag. 1832; Genest's Account of the Stage.]

W. J. F.


O'HARTAGAIN, CINETH (d. 975), Irish poet, was a native of the north of Ireland, and his death is recorded by Tighearnach under the year 975. A poem on the former grandeur and present desolation of Tara, beginning 'Domhan duthain alainne' ('Transitory, beautiful World'), is attributed to him in the 'Leabhar Gabhala' of the O'Clerys. Several long poems ascribed to him occur in the 'Dinnsenchus,' a work which relates the legendary history of the duns, lakes, plains, mountains, and other topographical features of Ireland. It gives a prose account of each place, followed by an account in verse.

[Book of Leinster, facsimile; Book of Ballymote, photograph; Transactions of Iberno-Celtic Society, Dublin, 1820.]

N. M.


O'HEARN, FRANCIS (1753–1801), Irish catholic divine, was born at Lismore, co. Waterford, in 1753, and educated at the Irish College in Louvain, where he was ordained, and afterwards became a professor, and finally rector. Daniel O'Connell [q. v.] was for a short time a pupil of his in this college. While a student there, O'Hearn attended the university of Louvain, and became a member of the Flemish 'nation,' one of the groups into which, in accordance with old custom, the university was divided. He became a diligent student of the Flemish language; and, moreover, did much to foster the language, then much in neglect, among the Flemings themselves. He wrote several poems in Flemish, of one of which the Bollandist Father de Buck has remarked that few Flemings of that day could produce so good a poem. O'Hearn was an accomplished scholar, and spoke several European languages fluently. He was also an enthusiastic traveller, and had made journeys through most of the continental countries on foot. On one occasion, while travelling in Turkey, he was suspected of instigating a rebellion against the sultan, and his arrest was ordered; but he escaped to Russia, and, it is stated, wandered through a portion of Siberia, and returned to Belgium by Norway, a remarkable feat of travelling in those days.