Francis John Byrne
(born 1934) is an Irish
Born in Shanghai
where his father, a Dundalk
man, captained a ship on the Yellow River
, Byrne was evacuated with his mother to Australia
on the outbreak of World War II
. After the war, his mother returned to Ireland, where his father, who had survived internment in Japanese
hands, returned to take up work as a harbour master.
Byrne attended Blackrock College
in County Dublin
where he learned Latin
, to add to the Chinese
he had learned in his Shanghai childhood. He studied Early Irish History at University College Dublin
where he excelled, graduating with first class honours. He studied Paleography
and Medieval Latin
in Germany, and then lectured on Celtic languages
, before returning to University College in 1964 to take up a professorship.
Byrne's best known work is his Irish Kings and High-Kings
(1973). He was joint editor of the Royal Irish Academy
's New History of Ireland
(9 volumes). A festschrift
in his honour was published in 1999 under the editorship of his former student Alfred P. Smyth.
He retired in 2000.
- Irish Kings and High-Kings. 3rd revised edition, Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2001. ISBN 978-1-85182-196-9
- Smyth, Alfred P. (ed.), Seanchas: Studies in Early and Medieval Irish Archaeology, History and Literature in Honour of Francis J. Byrne. Dublin: Four Courts, 1999. ISBN 978-1-85182-489-2
- Announcement of Francis J. Byrne's retirement and......