Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Sheil, RICHARD LALOR (1791-1851), Irish politician and orator, was born at Drumdowney, County Tipperary, his father being a wealthy Cadiz merchant and educated at Stonyhurst and Trinity College, Dublin. He was called to the Irish bar in 1814, but supported himself mainly by literature, writing several plays, which appeared on the London stage, and contributing Sketches of the Irish Bar to the New Monthly Magazine (1822). The foundation of the Catholic Association in 1823 opened a new career for him, and when it was suppressed (1825) he devoted himself with energy to the organisation of the society which took its place. By means of his impassioned oratory he gained a position in the movement second to that of O'Connell alone. He eventually joined O'Connell in his demand for repeal, although after Catholic emancipation (1829) he had discountenanced further agitation. From the final defeat of the repeal party in 1834 Sheil acted with the Whigs, and in 1839 he was made Vice-President of the Board of Trade. His death occurred at Florence, where he was residing as British Minister.