J.N. Duggan was born in Sheffield in 1938 but came to live in Ireland at the age of 12. She returned to Sheffield to train as a nurse and later did her BSc at University College Dublin.
She now lives in Galway and for the last 20 years has concentrated her time on writing historical biographies.
She is the author of the critically acclaimed biography, Sophia of Hanover: from Winter Princess to Heiress of Great Britain, 1630-1714, published in 2010 by Peter Owen Publishers, London. Having long been fascinated by the subject she translated a considerable proportion of Sophia's writings from the original French and German to reveal a remarkable portrait of a remarkable woman.
She is also the author of John Toland: Ireland's Forgotten Philosopher, Scholar ... and Heretic. She came upon the name and reputation of Toland through her research for her biography of Sophia of Hanover:
"Searching through other people’s bibliographies, I realised that he was the recognized source of information on the Courts of Hanover and Berlin in the first decade of the Eighteenth Century, and Chambers Biographical Dictionary informed me that he was an Irishman."
At present she is working on a life of Count Hans Axel Fersen, the friend and confidante of Marie Antoinette which is due to be published in 2013.
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John Toland: Ireland's Forgotten Philosopher, Scholar ... and Heretic
by J.N. Duggan
An examination of the life and work of John Toland, scholar and philosopher of international renown. A prolific writer on important political and religious issues of his day, he was the first person to be called a freethinker (by Bishop Berkeley). He is chiefly remembered today for his book Christianity Not Mysterious, which was condemned by British and Irish parliaments and publicly burned.
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