Image Gallery: Denis O'Hampsey

Denis Hempson

Denis O'Hampsey
(Denis Hempson)

Engraving of O'Hampsey, c. 1805, published in Bunting's 1809 book. It is curious that the harp in the engraving resembles but is not identical with the Downhill harp housed at Guinness Brewery in Dublin. Most notably it lacks the carved zoomorphic head where the pillar meets the neck. Is this a different neck...artistic license...not enough room on the engraver's plate? A painting exists, apparently of O'Hampsey at his bedside with a harp similarly lacking the animal head, but as we don't know its date it may be that the artist was inspired by the popular book "The Wild Irish Girl" and copied Bunting's engraved harp.

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