Stephen Gwynn, Hugh Thompson (Illustrations), Highways and Byways in Donegal and Antrim, 1899


Cat No.:   IE0062:

Originally published in London 1899 by MacMillan & Co., Ltd., this first edition of the Highways and Byways in Donegal and Antrim, is republished here on fully-searchable CD-Rom. Macmillan began publishing the Highways and Byways series in 1899, this being one of the earliest in the series, and by 1909 had completed nineteen publications in the series, which extended across the length and breadth of England, Scotland and Wales, with one publication on France (on Normandy) and this the only one in the series on Ireland. This highly popular series continued until the beginning of the Second World War. In May 2009 Pan Macmillan reissued a one-volume collection of the best of the Highways and Byways series offering a glimpse of the very best of Britain.

The original publication contains more than three-hundred printed pages and a colour map of the route taken by its author, Stephen Gwynn and illustrator, Hugh Thomson. The Donegal Tourist Agency stated of the Highways and Byways in Donegal and Antrim that that it was a wonderful mix of topography, local history and folklore and Gwynn's late nineteenth century tour, most of which he undertook on foot or by bicycle, allows a modern readership to rediscover Donegal and Antrim through this travelogue. Containing twenty chapters detailing a dozen or more tours, Gwynn begins his tour with advice to the reader on both the Ulster dialect and to the cyclist, both of which could prove tricky, before commencing at Enniskillen and Lough Erne and taking a roughly circular route along the coasts of Donegal and Antrim before finishing his journey in Belfast.

Tours covered by Gwynn and Thomson include: Enniskillen - Lough Erne; Ballyshannon - Donegal; Killybegs; Carrick - Slieve League - Glencolumkille; Glenties - Ardara; Burton Port - Dungloe - Glenveagh; Gartan - Doon Well; Glenveagh - Gweedore; Dunfanaghy - Horn Head - Tory Island; Rosapenna - Mulroy Bay - Port Salon; Rathmullen; Gap of Mamore - Malin Head - Moville; Derry; Coleraine - Portstewart - Portrush - The Causeway. Ballycastle - Carrick-A-Rede; Rathlin - Fair Head - Glendun; Glenariff - Larne - Carrickfergus - Belfast.

Much of the charm and vigour of the Highways and Byways series which has stood the test of time is down to the travellers and in the case of Donegal and Antrim this is no exception. Stephen Gwynn (1864-1950) was an Irish journalist, biographer, author, poet and politician and member of a prodigious family and his tour of Highways and Byways of Donegal and Antrim truly records the love he had for his native Ireland, which was also the case of his lesser-known, but perhaps as illustrious illustrator, Hugh Thomson. The Highways and Byways of Donegal and Antrim are replete with more than eighty pen and ink sketches by Thomson. Born in Coleraine in 1860, by 1883 Thomson had moved to London and had begun working as the illustrator for Macmillan. Amongst his many credits are the illustrations for more than 70 novels, including those of Jane Austen and by the time he drew the illustrations for the Highways and Byways of Donegal and Antrim Thomson was the most popular and successful illustrator of his time. Much of Thomson's work was purchased by Derry City Council and when originals of his pen and ink sketches come up for sale they command high prices and for this reason alone the many books in the Highways and Byways series illustrated by Thomson - which are the majority - are well worth purchasing and this edition for Donegal and Antrim is no exception. 

No. of CDs is:  1 ;   Format is:  PDF ;   Searchable?:  YES;

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