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J. Sheridan Moore (1828 – 1891)

Joseph Sheridan Moore was born in Dublin, Ireland, in 1828, the son of a solicitor, Luke Moore, and his wife Bride Marion (ne Sheridan). He was educated at a Jesuit college in Lancashire, England, and emigrated to New South Wales at the age of nineteen in 1847. In Sydney, Moore joined the Benedictine monastic order, and became headmaster of a Catholic school, Lyndhurst College.

After leaving Lyndhurst and the Benedictine order in 1856, Moore began to play an active role in literary and cultural life in Sydney, and was associated particularly with the literary patron Nicol D. Stenhouse and his circle. While continuing to teach at various colleges in Sydney, Moore contributed articles to the press and gave public lectures, and in 1858 he became editor of the literary periodical The Month. From the 1860s to the late 1880s, Moore also published numerous pamphlets, often derived from his lectures on various subjects. His only collection of verse, Spring Life Lyrics, was published in 1864, though his collection of essays entitled The Ethics of the Irish Under the Pentarchy (1872) also included some poems and stories.

While Moore had developed a literary reputation in the colony, he had difficulty securing regular employment, and in 1873 he was declared bankrupt with debts of over £1000. He died in Sydney on 17 October 1891. Moore's poetry was closely modelled on the style of the English Romantic poets.

Poetry Collections
  • Spring Life Lyrics Sydney: London Reading and Wellbank: Sampson and Low 1864
Suggested Further Reading
  • Francis Devlin Glass Moore, Joseph Sheridan (1828-1891) Australian Dictionary of Biography Melbourne Melbourne University Press 1974 Volume 5, pp. 278-79.
  • Ann-Mari Jordens The Stenhouse Circle: Literary Life in mid-Nineteenth Century Sydney Melbourne Melbourne University Press 1979