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Sarah Leech (1809 - c. 1830)

The daughter of a linen weaver, Sarah was born near Raphoe, County Donegal, and is one of the few published women writers in the Ulster-Scots tradition of that era. Beyond the biographical account contained in her only published collection, Poems on Various Subjects (1828), very little more is known about her. Her staunch unionism and Protestantism are evidenced by poems such as ‘The Brunswick Clubs’ and ‘Progress of the Reformation’. ‘On the Killing of a Mouse in Harvest’ compares very favourably with Burns’ ‘To a Mouse’. Sarah’s ‘weaver poetry’ is genuinely impressive and unfortunately undervalued.

Further reading: Celine McGlynn & Pauline Holland, Sarah Leech: The Ulster-Scots Poetess of Raphoe, Co. Donegal.

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