Photo: via Reddit

writers The Best Irish Authors  

Ranker Books
642 votes 138 voters 7.8k views 32 items Embed

List Rules Top Irish writers of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and plays

The best Irish authors, ranked by fans of Irish literature. This list includes George Moore, who is considered the first great modern Irish novelist, as well as names like James Joyce and Oscar Wilde, famous writers of classic Irish literature. The names on this list are considered to be some of the best Irish writers and the list includes the birthplace of the authors, along with additional biographic information.

The list asks the question, "who are the best Irish authors?" and includes poets, novelists and nonfiction writers from all genres and eras for a comprehensive list. These writers from Ireland have contributed to not only Irish literature, but the international canon of some of the greatest novels, essays, short stories, poems, and plays of all time. 

The best Irish authors list can be voted on and is open, so please add any great Irish writers that are missing and vote up your favorites.
list ordered by

1
41 5
William Butler Yeats is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Irish Authors
William Butler Yeats Sandymount, Ireland

Famous Irish American Writers The Scariest Novels of All Time

2
49 9
James Joyce is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Irish Authors
James Joyce Rathgar, Ireland

3
41 9
Oscar Wilde is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Oscar Wilde Dublin, Ireland

4
28 6
Jonathan Swift is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Jonathan Swift Dublin, Ireland

5
33 10
C. S. Lewis is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Irish Authors
C. S. Lewis Belfast, Ireland

6
29 8
George Bernard Shaw is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Irish Authors
George Bernard Shaw Dublin, Ireland

7
27 8
Samuel Beckett is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Samuel Beckett Foxrock, Ireland

8
26 8
Bram Stoker is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Bram Stoker Clontarf, Dublin

9
18 7
Seamus Heaney is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Seamus Heaney Castledawson, U.K.

10
12 4
Seán O'Casey is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Seán O'Casey Dublin, Ireland

11
11 5
Roddy Doyle is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Roddy Doyle Kilbarrack, Ireland

12
6 1
Frank O'Connor is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Frank O'Connor Cork, Republic of Ireland

13
9 4
Brendan Behan is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Brendan Behan Dublin, Ireland

14
11 6
William Trevor is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Irish Authors
William Trevor Mitchelstown, Ireland

15
12 7
Maeve Binchy is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Maeve Binchy Dalkey, Ireland

20 Books to Read in Your 20s The Most Overrated Books of All Time

16
10 6
Colm Tóibín is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Colm Tóibín Enniscorthy, Ireland

17
7 3
Edna O'Brien is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Edna O'Brien Tuamgraney, Republic of Ireland

18
4 0
John Millington Synge is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Irish Authors
John Millington Synge Rathfarnham, Republic of Ireland

19
9 6
Brian O'Nolan is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Brian O'Nolan Strabane, U.K.

20
7 5
Colum McCann is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Colum McCann Dublin, Ireland

21
6 4
Patrick Kavanagh is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Patrick Kavanagh Inniskeen, Ireland

22
5 3
Emma Donoghue is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Emma Donoghue Dublin, Ireland

23
10 9
Frank McCourt is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Frank McCourt Brooklyn, New York

24
5 4
Joseph O'Connor is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Joseph O'Connor Dublin, Ireland

25
6 6
Sebastian Barry is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Sebastian Barry Dublin, Ireland

26
6 6
George Moore is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Irish Authors
George Moore County Mayo, Ireland

27
5 5
Anne Enright is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Anne Enright Dublin, Ireland

28
5 6
John Banville is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Irish Authors
John Banville Wexford, Ireland

29
4 5
Maria Edgeworth is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Maria Edgeworth Black Bourton, U.K.

30
4 7
Marian Keyes is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Marian Keyes Limerick, Ireland

31
2 5
John Connolly is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Irish Authors
John Connolly Dublin, Ireland

32
6 11
Cecelia Ahern is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Irish Authors
Cecelia Ahern Dublin, Ireland