Irish dramatist, poet, and prolific writer of popular stories, who played an important role in the rise of Irish national literature. Son of a poor farmer, MacManus became a schoolteacher in County Donegal and began contributing articles and stories to many Irish newspapers in the 1890s. Some of his best retellings of Irish fairy tales are in In Chimney Corners: Merry Tales of Irish Folk‐lore (1899). During the 20th century MacManus travelled back and forth between Ireland and the United States and became one of the most popular interpreters of Irish folklore for Americans through his collections of tales. Among his best works are The Bewitched Fiddle and Other Irish Tales (1900), Donegal Fairy Stories (1900), Tales that Were Told (1920), The Donegal Wonder Book (1926), Tales from Ireland (1949), and The Bold Heroes of Hungry Hill, and Other Irish Folk Tales (1951). Though MacManus often exaggerated the Irish aspects of the tales with a mannered style, he also expanded upon the Irish fairy‐tale tradition in innovative ways.
— Jack Zipes