Lady Gregory tells about Ireland's gods and her fighting men from the old Irish sagas.
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Isabella Augusta, Lady Gregory (née Persse; 15 March 1852 – 22 May 1932) was an Irish dramatist, folklorist and theatre manager. With William Butler Yeats and Edward Martyn, she co-founded the Irish Literary Theatre and the Abbey Theatre, and wrote numerous short works for both companies. Lady Gregory produced a number of books of retellings of stories taken from Irish mythology. Born into a class that identified closely with British rule, her conversion to cultural nationalism, as evidenced by her writings, was emblematic of many of the political struggles to occur in Ireland during her lifetime. Lady Gregory is mainly remembered for her work behind the Irish Literary Revival. Her home at Coole Park, County Galway, served as an important meeting place for leading Revival figures, and her early work as a member of the board of the Abbey was at least as important for the theatre's development as her creative writings. Lady Gregory's motto was taken from Aristotle: "To think like a wise man, but to express oneself like the common people." A trip to Inisheer in the Aran Islands in 1893 re-awoke an interest in the Irish language and in the folklore of the area in which she lived. She organised Irish lessons at the school at Coole and began collecting tales from the area around her home, especially from the residents of Gort workhouse. One of the tutors she employed, was Norma Borthwick, who would visit Coole numerous times. This activity led to the publication of a number of volumes of folk material, including A Book of Saints and Wonders (1906), The Kiltartan History Book (1909), and The Kiltartan Wonder Book (1910). She also produced a number of collections of "Kiltartanese" versions of Irish myths, including Cuchulain of Muirthemne (1902) and Gods and Fighting Men (1904). ("Kiltartanese" is Lady Gregory's term for English with Gaelic syntax, based on the dialect spoken in Kiltartan.) In his introduction to the former, Yeats wrote "I think this book is the best that has come out of Ireland in my time." James Joyce was to parody this claim in the Scylla and Charybdis chapter of his novel Ulysses. from wikipedia
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