Richard Ashe KING
- Born: 8 May 1839, Ennis, Co. Clare, Ireland
- Marriage: Helen Brookfield Claudia JACOB on 14 Apr 1898 in Parish Church, Tavistock, Devon, England
- Died: 27 May 1932, London, England aged 93
- Buried: 1 Jun 1932, Kensal Green Cemetery, London, England
Extract from "A Catalogue of Graduates in the University of Dublin" by James H. Todd (1869)
King (Richard Ashe), B.A., Hiem. 1862. -- M.A., Hiem. 1865
He became a clergyman (curate and then priest at St. Nicholas, Cork on 20 December 1863) but abandoned it for a literary career. He was President of the Irish Literary Society at one time, and in that capacity allegedly tangled with Yeats. However Yeats and he must have reconciled because Yeats dedicated his collection "Early Poems and Stories" published 1925 to him. His literary output included some biographical books on Goldsmith and Swift, but was mostly 3 volume novels.
Extract from the Dublin Evening Mail, dated 22 December 1863
At the ordination held on Sunday in the Cathedral by the Bishop of Cork, the following gentlemen were admitted to Holy Orders: Priests - The Rev. Richard Ashe King, B.A., curate of St. Peter's, Cork.
Extract from "The Weekly Messenger" dated 19 January 1889
Richard Ashe King, an English vicar, has resigned his living to write novels.
Extract from the London Standard, dated Monday, 18 April 1898
KING - JACOB: On April 14th, at the Parish Church, Tavistock, by the Rev. S. G. Le Neven, viacr, Ricahrd Ashe King, M.A., fourth son of the late Rev. Luke White King, L.L.D., Head Master of Ennis College, Co. Claire, Ireland, to Helen Brookfield Claudia, younger daughter of Major-General William Jacob, Indian Staff Corps, of Brooklands, Tavistock.
Extract from "The Briggensian" school magazine (Brigg Grammar School, Lincolnshire) dated Autumn 1916
Some of us have had the privilege this term of attending a course of University Extension Lectures on English Novelists. These have been given in the School Room on alternate Wednesdays by the Rev. Ashe King, M.A., a brilliant lecturer, who, in addition to his wide knowledge and human sympathy, has an inexhaustible fund of wit and humour.
Extract from "Dictionary of Pseudonyms" by Adrian Room (2010)
Basil: Richard Ashe King (1839-1932), Irish cleric, novelist, biographer. King took the name Desmond B. O'Rrien for his writings in Truth magazine, of which he was literary editor.
Extract from "Ireland in Fiction: A Guide to Irish Novels, Tales, Romances and Folk Lore" by Stephen James Meredith Brown
KING, Richard Ashe; "Basil", "Desmond O'Brien". The Author is (1917) Staff Extension Lecturer of Oxford and London Universities. Has contributed a good deal to the CORNHILL and to the PALL MALL GAZETTE, and is reviewer for TRUTH. . . . He gave up in the eighties his living in the Church of England and began contributing to FREEMAN'S JOURNAL, TRUTH, etc. "He is," says W.P. Ryan in his The Irish Literary Revival, "intensely Celtic, but too candid to overlook the Celt's failings." For some time in the eighties he lived in Blackrock, Co. Dublin.
Description in the Times on 4 Nov 1929: "A great Irishman, a distinguished scholar, an ideal gentleman".
Extract from the Inverness Courier, dated 8 November 1929
Mr. Richard Ashe King, to whom the "Courier" referred about a year ago as one of the oldest journalists and literary men in London, is in his ninetieth year. Few journalists have written as many interesting reviews as Richard Ashe King wrote for more than one generation in "Truth". He is vice-president of the Johnson society. It was to him that W. B. Yeats dedicated his "Early Poems and Stories".
Extract from The Yorkshire Post and Leeds Intelligencer, dated Thursday, 7 April 1932
Former Yorkshire Vicar.
Illness of Mr. Richard Ashe King in London.
Mr. Richard Ashe King, formerly Curate at the Old Church, Bradford, and for 14 years Vicar of St. Mark's, Low Moor, Yorkshire, who is in his 93rd year, is confined to his house at Maida Vale with illness, and was unable to attend the last meeting of the Irish Literary Society in London, of which he has been president for many years.
Mr. Ashe King left Low Moor over 50 years ago to take up journalistic work in London. He served on the "Pall Mall Gazette" under the editorship of John Morley, and was literary editor of "Truth" for nearly 40 years.
Richard married Helen Brookfield Claudia JACOB, daughter of Major-General William JACOB and Unknown, on 14 Apr 1898 in Parish Church, Tavistock, Devon, England. (Helen Brookfield Claudia JACOB was born on 17 Apr 1873 and died in 1950.)