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Prodigal Father
The Life of John Butler Yeats (1839-1922)

William M. Murphy

Paper $29.95    |   0-8156-0725-3    |   2001

An extraordinary portrait of the life of the elder Yeats, this recognized masterpiece establishes William M. Murphy as the premiere Yeats family biographer.

"Murphy’s pages read like an enthralling family novel."
The New Yorker

"An outstanding picture of the life of Ireland's greatest family. . . . Begetting genius is a good thing, possessing it is better. John Butler Yeats happily did both. . . . [The book] shows J. B. Yeats to have been as worthy of his sons as they were of their father."
New York Times Book Review

"An achievement nearly as rare as its subject, the right book written by exactly the right man."
Hugh Kenner

"[Prodigal Father] is exact, searching, wide-ranging, critical and at the same time often amusing and always compassionate. This is a book on the grand scale."
Times Literary Supplement

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William M. Murphy is Thomas Lamont Professor of Ancient and Modern Literature Emeritus at Union College. He is the author of Family Secrets: William Butler Yeats and His Relatives, also published by Syracuse University Press.

6 x 9, 690 pages, 14 photographs, notes

Prodigal Father

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