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Poet Seamus Heaney dies aged 74

Seamus Heaney, who has died aged 74.

Seamus Heaney, who has died aged 74.

Irish poet and playwright Seamus Heaney has died aged 74.

The Nobel prize-winner was born in April 1939, the eldest of nine children, on a small farm called Mossbawn near Bellaghy in Co Derry, Northern Ireland, and his upbringing often played out in the poetry he wrote in later years.

In later years he lived in Dublin.

The Heaney family are expected to issue a statement on his death later.

Heaney is survived by his wife, Marie, and children, Christopher, Michael and Catherine Ann.

Funeral arrangements are to be announced later.

The Nobel prize-winner was born in April 1939, the eldest of nine children, on a small farm called Mossbawn near Bellaghy in Co Derry, Northern Ireland, and his upbringing often played out in the poetry he wrote in later years.

He was educated at St Columb’s College, Derry, a Catholic boarding school, and later at Queen’s University Belfast, before making his home in Dublin, with periods of teaching in the US.

Heaney was an honorary fellow at Trinity College Dublin and last year was bestowed with the Seamus Heaney Professorship in Irish Writing at the university, which he described as a great honour.

His world renowned poetry first came to public attention in the mid-1960s with his first major collection, Death Of A Naturalist, published in 1966.

As the Troubles took hold later that decade, his experiences were seen through the darkened mood of his work.

 

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