1819 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Joseph Cooper Walker

Richard Ryan, in Biographica Hibernica. A Biographical Dictionary of the Worthies of Ireland (1819) 2:620.



JOSEPH COOPER WALKER, an author who has thrown much light on the bardic antiquities of his country, was born in Dublin, and educated by the Rev. Dr. Ball; but being possessed of a frame of peculiar delicacy, was obliged to visit Italy. Here he devoted his time principally to the study of Italian literature. He soon returned from the continent, little improved in health; but his mind was stored with the treasures of observation. He wrote two works, which are now very scarce, viz. Historical Memoirs of the Bards and Music of Ireland, 4to. plates; and Historical Essay on the Dress, Armour, and Weapons of the Irish, 4to. plates.

The above are held in great and deserved estimation, although filled with long Italian quotations, in many instances quite irrelevant, which Walker, in a conversation he had a short time before his decease with the celebrated Mr. Bunting, sincerely regretted, as then he was convinced it arose from a badness of taste. Mr. Walker died April 12, 1810, in the forty-ninth year of his age, at St. Valeri, near Bray.

He was also the author of a quarto volume, entitled, Memoirs on Italian Tragedy; and in the Transactions of the Irish Academy for 1788, there is a short Essay on the Irish stage, written by him.