The Other Wilde: Jane

Jane Wilde in the 1840s

Jane Wilde in the 1840s

“My dear boy, no woman is a genius…They represent the triumph of matter over mind, just as men represent the triumph of mind over morals.” The Picture of Dorian Gray

When it comes to the Wilde family you never know how many surprises you are likely to come across.  Possibly one of the most unexpected ones, is the brilliance and the nationalistic fervor of Oscar’s mother Jane Wilde.

The daughter of a clergyman, very well connected (a brother became one of the most respected judges on the US bench, and an uncle Charles Ormesby was a member of the Irish Parliament) she was a young woman during the dreadful years of the Irish famine.  Her response was to take up a fiery torch for home rule, and she wrote the poem The Stricken Land in 1847. Continue reading