Once numbered among the best-known authors and most-controversial literary figures of his day, George Moore has been relegated to a footnote on the Irish Literary Revival of the first decade or so of the twentieth century. His most important book remains Hail and Farewell (published in three volumes: Ave, Salve, and Vale), a doorstopper of a memoir of the revival. (Hemingway included the book in his short list of prose works a young writer must read.) In bringing Moore and his times to life in a copiously footnoted biography of more than 600 pages,[1] Adrian Frazier has produced a fascinating picture of the Anglo-Irish writer, a man of many contradictions, immense initiative, and energy: one of the most multifaceted writers of his own or any time.

Moore was born in 1852, the oldest son of George Henry Moore, Member of Parliament for County Mayo, a Catholic landlord, horseman,...

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