Mac Coluim, Fionán


Fionán Mac Coluim, drawing by Seán Ó Súilleabháin RHA (with the kind permission of the Irish Folklore Collection)
Fionán Mac Coluim, drawing by Seán Ó Súilleabháin RHA (with the kind permission of the Irish Folklore Collection)

Biographical Note

Mac Coluim (McCallam), Fionán (Pseudonyms: Finghin na Leamhna, Goll Mac Morna) (1875-1966): Fionán Mac Coluim was born in Spunkane, county Kerry, on 28 August 1875. He father was a commercial traveller. According to the Personal-Bogen form, Fionán lived in Spunkane until age 6, but his family moved often, and they apparently also lived in Antrim and Kilkenny during this time. He received his secondary education in Cork. He also lived in Dublin before he was 20. He went to London around 1896, aged 21, where he worked in the Treasury and the India Offices. While there, he became involved in the Gaelic League. When he returned to Kerry in 1902 he served as 'Ard-Timire' for the League. He was also its representative in America for periods between 1912 and 1916. He also worked as a song-collector for the League before becoming Irish Inspector for the Vocational Education Committees. He was a member of The Folklore of Ireland Society and of the Irish Folklore Commission. He was appointed musical advisor to the Minister of Education between 1945 and 1966. He married Máirín Nic Craith in Cork around 1936. They had one son. Fionán Mac Coluim died on December 16, 1966. For the folkloric material and songs he collected, see Risteárd de hAe, Clár Litridheacht na Nua-Ghaedhilge (Dublin, 1938-40), index. He edited collections of songs and published articles and stories in various periodicals. He used a variety of pseudonyms: 'Finghín na Leamhna', 'Goll Mac Morna', 'An Giolla Ruadh' and 'An Droigheantóir'. Some of his material is housed in the Irish Folklore Collection, UCD, also. For further information, see at

Personal Details Form ('Personalbogen')

Personalbogen Personalbogen Personalbogen

A personal details form (‘Personalbogen’) was completed for each speaker at the Doegen Scheme recording sessions 1928-31. The information displayed below is derived mainly from these forms.

Personalbogen form(s) for this speaker (RIA Library ref.)Doegen P-B/61
Record number(s) for this speakerLA 1092
Track title(s) for this speakerRaghaidh, raghaidh - Fionán Mac Coluim
Gheobhair é - Fionán Mac Coluim
Tairse abhaile - Fionán Mac Coluim
Hóró damhas is damhas - Fionán Mac Coluim
An bóthar ó thuaidh - Fionán Mac Coluim
Beidh ríl againn - Fionán Mac Coluim
Track ID(s) for this speaker (User Version)LA_1092d1, LA_1092d2, LA_1092d3, LA_1092d4, LA_1092d5, LA_1092d6
Forename(s) (Canonical)Fionán
Surname (Canonical)Mac Coluim
Alias forename(s)

No data.

Alias surname(s)

No data.

County of originCo. Kerry
Address64/5 Merrion Square, Dublin
Date of birth1875-08-28
Place of birthSpunkane, Co. Kerry
Nearest big town to place of birthKillarney, Co. Kerry
Place(s) lived age 0-6Spunkane, Co. Kerry
Place(s) lived age 7-20Cork; Dublin; London
Place(s) lived from age 20London; Ireland; America.
EducationPrimary and secondary, Christian Brothers Schools, Cork.
Father's home placeCo. Antrim
Mother's home placeCo. Kerry
Father's professionCommercial traveller
Mother tongueIrish and English
Languages spoken other than IrishEnglish
Able to read?Yes (Irish and English)
Able to write?Yes (Irish and English)
Able to play a musical instrument?No
Able to sing or play modern European kinds of music?A little
ProfessionInspector, Education Department
Names (of RIA committee members, recordist) appearing on form

No data.

Comment(s) on voice etc."h/ka mit weiche[m] Einschlag. mittlere Stimmlage geringe Nasalität, mittlere Kon[son]a[n]z" (Wilhelm Doegen)