MacCabe, William Bernard (DNB00)

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MACCABE, WILLIAM BERNARD (1801–1891), author and historian, was born of Roman catholic parents in Dublin on 23 Nov. 1801. In early life, from 1823, he was connected with the Dublin press (for which he reported many of O'Connell's earlier speeches), and was editor of more than one provincial Irish newspaper. About 1833 he settled in London, and at once obtained an engagement on the ‘Morning Chronicle,’ at a time when its staff included some of the most eminent men connected with journalism. MacCabe was an accomplished scholar, and his rare mastery of modern languages rendered him an exceptionally valuable foreign correspondent. In the parliamentary recesses most of his time was spent abroad, and he also contributed critical reviews to the ‘Morning Chronicle,’ and afterwards to the ‘Morning Herald.’ At all times an industrious student of history, he devoted many years to preparing a history of England during the Anglo-Saxon period. This work, which was founded upon original researches into the monastic records at home and abroad, appeared in London in three large volumes in 1847, 1849, and 1854, under the title of ‘A Catholic History of England,’ and the third volume closed with the Norman conquest. MacCabe was also the author of several interesting and dramatic historical romances, such as ‘Bertha,’ 1851, 3 vols. 8vo, which dealt with the struggle between the Emperor Henry of Germany and Hildebrand; ‘Adelaide, Queen of Italy,’ 1856, 12mo, and ‘Florine, Princess of Burgundy,’ 12mo. These works have been translated into German, Italian, and French. In 1852 MacCabe for a brief period renewed his connection with the Dublin press as editor of the ‘Telegraph’ newspaper; but he soon after retired from active literary work, and lived for many years in Brittany. He was a contributor to ‘Once a Week’ and to ‘Notes and Queries;’ and was also the author of many scholarly articles in the ‘Dublin Review.’ He died on 8 Dec. 1891 at Donnybrook, co. Dublin, at the age of ninety.

[Personal knowledge.]

E. W.