Front Page: Index

| Authors AZ | Bibliography | The Library |
| The Gateway | The Bulletin | About Ricorso |

Terms & Conditions Site Description Some Reviews A History Note

Authors AZ provides comprehensive bio-bibliographical information about 5,000 authors with some extracts, representative commentary, and sundry notes about them. Irish journals past and present are similarly treated.
Bibliography holds annual lists of publications on Irish literature and its contexts, together with compiled topical bibliographies and others from key monographs. The table of contents of Irish-studies journals are held here too.
The Library holds digital classic Irish texts along with extracts from leading monographs and articles, and selections from leading international critics. A large collection of reviews can be found here also. [Password required.]
The Gateway gives world-wide access to Irish-studies centres, associations, publishers & journals, Irish-interest websites, &c. OPACs of leading libraries can be reached from here - including the amazing COPAC (UK).
The Bulletin lists scholarly events in Irish Studies and gives some account of recent work on this website and functions as an aide memoire and diary for the editor which provide some insight into daily operations at RICORSO.
About Ricorso gives information about this website relating to content and history, authorship and design, abbreviations and sources - as well as describing the methods of compilation and the format rules arrived at over the years.
Search Engine allows you to look up any word or combination of words either in any of the above regions or the entire website. The linked results can then be individually searched using your browser’s “Find” command.

Site Description

RICORSO is a large dataset of information about Irish writers and their works arranged in the form of a bio-bibliographical dictionary, with condensed biographies, lists of criticism and extracts from the works and commentaries upon them. It also contains a digital library and a digital gallery, as well as other sections devoted to journal bibliographies and gateways to different areas and sites of Irish Studies. It has been devised and maintained by Dr. Bruce Stewart throughout its existence, orginating as a EIRData, a desktop database in the early 1990s which was associated with the Princess Grace Irish Library (Monaco) for some years after 2000. The present name and epigraph of the website derive from James Joyce’s Finnegans Wake (1939) - a writer copiously documented in its pages which, together with its wider contents, are the result of a more or less continuous process of compilation on the part of its owner over three decades.

Dr Stewart studied English at Trinity College, Dublin (TCD Schol., BA Hons & PhD.) and the University of California (MA). His early-career work as an overseas teacher involved a decade-long sojourn in Libya and Saudi Arabia before taking up a research and teaching post the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland (UK) where he stayed on as Lecturer and Reader for 25 years. He served as Assistant Editor to Professor Robert Welch in the production of The Oxford Companion to Irish Literature (2006) and is the author of numerous articles and chapters in organs of Irish literary studies, as well as the entry on James Joyce in the Dictionary of National Biography (2004). During 1996-2004 he acted simultaneously as Literary Director of the Princess Grace Irish Liberary in Monaco and Secretary of the International Association for the Study of Irish Literatures (IASIL). He is an emeritus member of Ulster University and professor adjuntivo in English Literature and Language at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte (UFRN) in Brazil today. The Classroom pages on this website arise from his teaching duties there [link].

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Some Reviews ..
The Irish Times - ‘Site of the Week’ (24 April 2001) [column]

I happened upon the Princess Grace Irish Library - Electronic Irish Records Dataset (hence the odd URL, it has nothing to do with the phone company) one day by following a link from another site. Before using this wonderful site you have to accept that “PGIL-EIRData is a scholars’ notebook and not a commercial publication of any kind” and “should be cited in any publication involving materials found here,” which is very good advice for any use of the web.

As it says in the “About” section: “PGIL EIRData is an ambitious Internet project in Irish studies comprising an extensive set of digital records dealing with Irish literary authors and their works in all periods ... a tribute to Irish literary attainments.”

The site’s primary objective is to provide “biographical and bibliographical materials together with sample texts and commentary for research and teaching Irish studies.” Ultimately it aims to assemble the widest possible range of information about Irish writers with “various textual materials including works and commentary upon them both in excerpt-form and paraphrase, all intended for use by the world-wide Irish studies community”.

The list of authors goes from Thomas Kingsmill Abbott (1829-1913; q.v., Professor of Greek at TCD, wrote four books), through Bob Geldof, [q.v.] (whom it describes as the “grandson of a Belgian cook”) and Nahum Tate (1652-1715, q.v., born in Dublin, son of a dissenting clergyman and author of a huge number of books) to Zozimus (a pseudonym used by Michael Moran who was born in the Liberties in Dublin, was blind from birth, married twice and had one son).

It also has a list of Irish journals, starting with An Account of the Chief Occurrences in Ireland [q.v.], which lasted for five issues in 1659, and finishing with Zozimus [q.v.], a Dublin comic magazine edited by Richard Dowling and owned by T. D. Sullivan which lasted from 1870 to 1872 and was, of course, named for Michael Moran’s chosen pseudonym. This is an utterly fascinating site, brilliantly organised and full of amazing information. An absolute must-see for anyone remotely interested in Irish literature.

James O’Sullivan, ‘The Digital Humanities in Ireland’, in Digital Studies (5 Nov. 2020)

“Ireland’s early digital humanities scholars were all about curation and sharing of the sort found in CURIA and CELT, the remediation of print materials and the creation of web-based resources with searchability the guiding ethos. This spirit is seen in other early projects, like Ricorso: Digital materials for the study and appreciation of Anglo-Irish Literature, established in 1996 by Bruce Stewart, now Professor of English Literature & Language at the Federal University of Rio do Norte, Brazil, as well as Reader Emeritus in English Literature at the University of Ulster, Northern Ireland (Ricorso 2020). Originally called EIRData, Ricorso was renamed in 2004, and has been affiliated with various institutions throughout its existence, including the Princess Grace Irish Library in Monaco and the University of Ulster, Coleraine. Stewart describes Ricorso as ‘the result of a confessedly personal response to the amazing potential of information technology as this became manifest in the late 1980s’ (2011), a response which saw him diligently compile bibliographic records, textual extracts, and critical commentaries relating to Irish literature. Decades since Ricorso remains an essential encyclopaedic source on its subject, and Stewart’s “Reflections on Irish Studies in the Informatics Age” was an early contribution to Ireland’s emerging DH canon (2004).”

—James O’Sullivan [UCC/Cork] ‘The Digital Humanities in Ireland’, in Digital Studies/Le champ numérique 10:1 (5 Nov. 2020), pp.1-31 - available at Digital Commons - [online] and at Research Gate [online]; accessed 25.10.2021.

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A History Note

Website historians may be interested to view the PGIL-EIRData version of Electronic Irish Records [EIRData] which was placed on internet by Bruce Stewart for the Princess Grace Irish Library during his term as Literary Director from 1996 to 2004, and which was afterwards rebooted in its present form as RICORSO. The maintenance of the site on Web Archive is not part of the doing of the Ricorso editor and is dictated only by the policies and protocols of that website. There also existed an anterior version of the PGIL-EIRData as EIRData, and even before that a substantial set of alphabetically-listed record files on hard-drive which were compiled in Word during the editing of the Oxford Companion to Irish Literature (1996) as a hold-all for biographical and bibliographical information connected with that project. These were then saved as HTML as soon as Word incorporated that option and set up as a website which no longer exists on internet. The PGIL-EIRData site seen below has been preserved more-or-less intact in the Web Archive and can be viewed at that resource - online. Note: Be patient - this may take some time to download and some components behind the front page are missing.

Click on the image or here to view in separate window - or visit legacy site at