Delargy Collection

Séamus Ó Duilearga (1899-1980), born in Cushendall, Co. Antrim, was a student of Celtic Studies in UCD when a chance meeting in 1921 with Norwegian folklorist Reidar Thorolf Christiansen launched him on what was to become a lifetime of collecting and safeguarding Ireland’s folk heritage. He was a founding member of the Folklore of Ireland Society in 1926 and editor of its journal Béaloideas . Following a visit to Scandinavia in 1928, where folklore collection, preservation and research were vibrant, he became founder-director of the Irish Folklore Institute in 1930, and later honorary director of the Irish Folklore Commission, the work of which is today carried out by the National Folklore Collection in University College Dublin. He also served as Professor of Folklore at University College Dublin (1946-1971), and continued to broaden the academic relationships he fostered during his 1928 trip.


The Delargy Collection is a large collection of c.4000 items and constituted part of the personal library of Professor Séamus Ó Duilearga. It was acquired by the James Hardiman Library NUIG in 1981 and contains a fine representation of writings on all aspects of both Irish and European folklore from much of the 20th century. In addition to book material, there is a significant collection of offprints received by Professor Ó Duilearga from academic colleagues throughout the world, many of which are personally inscribed to him.

Physical characteristics

c.4000 books, pamphlets and offprints dealing with folklore, folk music and song, literatures, languages and dialects

Description or Catalogue






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Purchased by University College Galway, 1981, with the aid of the Heritage Trust.

Added by NUI Galway | Last updated on: 08 February 2018