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Celtic Literature

Many of history’s most famous writers and poets were born in Wales, Scotland, and Ireland. Irish authors have been particularly adept at reaping prestigious honors and awards for their life’s work: Several Irishmen have been awarded The Nobel Prize in Literature. The Nobel Foundation honored William Butler Yeats in 1923; George Bernard Shaw, 1925; Samuel Beckett, 1969; and Seamus Heaney, 1995. (Ironically, the man whom many single out as the most influential and greatest of all Irish authors, James Joyce, was snubbed by the Nobel Prize Committee.)

By visiting the Nobel Prize in Literature website, you can read biographies, speeches about and by the laureates, and even view images of their “diplomas” – the one-of-a-kind, artist-designed award certificates bestowed upon each recipient by the King of Sweden.

Below is a regrettably short and admittedly incomplete list of several notable authors and poets of Irish, Welsh, and Scottish descent. We apologize in advance should your favorite author not be listed here. For each writer a link is given where you can search for books written by and about them.

Irish Writers

Samuel Beckett
Brendan Behan
Roddy Doyle
Seamus Heaney
James Joyce
Frank McCourt
George Bernard Shaw
Bram Stoker
Jonathan Swift
John Millington Synge
Oscar Wilde
William Butler Yeats

Welsh Writers

Roald Dahl
T.E. Lawrence
Dylan Thomas
R.S. Thomas

Scottish Writers

Sir James Matthew Barrie
James Boswell
Robert Burns
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Kenneth Grahame
Robert Louis Stevenson


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