September 2019: New Translations of the Annual Letters from the Irish Mission, 1604–1674

Vera Moynes has edited and published Irish Jesuit Annual Letters, 1604–1674a collection of 25 annual letters from the Jesuit mission in Ireland during the 17th century. A professional archivist, Moynes has translated these letters, originally written in Latin and Portuguese, into English for the first time. According to The Irish Manuscripts Commission, which published this title, these annual letters “give insight into this dynamic and influential mission” while also providing “unique information on the social, political, cultural, religious, sexual and linguistic realities of the time.”


Irish Jesuit Annual Letters, 1604–1674 is a two-volume publication that uses letters held in the Jesuit archives both in Rome (ARSI) and in Dublin. The letters were written at a time when some 20 Jesuits were missioned to Ireland, running “houses in towns and cities across the island as well as embarking on frequent preaching expeditions.” The missionaries’ letters recount in great detail the “conditions in Ireland during one of its most violent and turbulent centuries.” Readers of Moynes’ translations will find “first-hand accounts of plague in Clonmel, famine in Connacht, massacre in Drogheda, exorcisms and and miracles across the whole island.”


In 2017, Moynes published The Jesuit Irish Mission: A Calendar of Correspondence, 1566–1752 with Institutum Historicum Societatis Iesu. See more on this title in a previous news posting at the Portal to Jesuit Studies.


More information about these titles by Moynes are available in the Jesuit Online Bibliography

Irish Jesuit Annual Letters, 1604–1674

The Jesuit Irish Mission: A Calendar of Correspondence, 1566–1752