Samuel Lover

Biography

Samuel Lover (February 24, 1797 Dublin – July 6, 1868) was an Irish songwriter, novelist, as well as a painter of portraits, chiefly miniatures. He was the grandfather of Victor Herbert.

Samuel was born at number 60 Grafton Street and went to school at Samuel Whyte's at 79 Grafton Street, now home to Bewley's cafe. By 1830 he was secretary of the Royal Hibernian Academy and lived at number 9 D'Olier Street.

Samuel eventually moved to London and made his main residence there.

Lover produced a number of Irish songs, of which several — including The Angel's Whisper, Molly Bawn, and The Four-leaved Shamrock — attained great popularity. He also wrote some novels, of which Rory O'More (in its first form a ballad), and Handy Andy are the best known, and short Irish sketches, which, with his songs, he combined into a popular entertainment called Irish Nights. He joined with Dickens in founding Bentley's Magazine.

"When once the itch of literature comes over a man, nothing can cure it but the scratching of a pen." - Samuel Lover

Lover's grandson was Victor Herbert who is best known for his many successful operettas that premiered on Broadway.

A memorial in St Patrick's Cathedral, Dublin summarises his achievements Poet, painter, novelist and composer, who, in the exercise of a genius as distinguished in its versatility as in its power, by his pen and pencil illustrated so happily the characteristics of the peasantry of his country that his name will ever be honourably identified with Ireland.

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