Éilis Dillon

Born in Galway, Éilis Dillon studied music, and considered becoming a professional cellist, but opted instead to become a writer. She lived for extended periods in the US and Italy.

She was a member of the Arts Council/an Chomhairle Ealaíon, and of the advisory committee of the International Commission on English in the Liturgy (Washington). She taught creative writing and languages in Ireland and abroad, and made extensive lecture tours in the US. She was a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, and a recipient of a Rockefeller Foundation fellowship at Bellagio, Italy.

She won the first Annual Children’s Book of the Year Award in 1991. She was awarded D.Litt (honoris causa) from the National University of Ireland in 1992.

Among her novels are The Bitter Glass (1968 & 1981); The Head of the Family (1966 & 1982); Bold John Henebry (1965); Across the Bitter Sea (1973); Blood Relations (1977); Wild Geese (1981); Citizen Burke (1984) and The Interloper (1987). Her poetry includes The Cats’ Opera (1981); A Page of History (1966), and Manna (1962). She also wrote many of children’s books, published some poetry and translated Caoineadh Áirt Uí Laoghaire by Eibhlín Dubh Ní Chonaill.

Back to former members