Mary Hayden

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Mary Hayden
Born1862 (1862)
Dublin, Ireland
Died1942 (aged 79–80)
Dublin, Ireland
Alma materAlexandra College
Royal University of Ireland
Occupation(s)Historian, Suffragist
  • Thomas Hayden (father)
RelativesThomas Crean (cousin)

Mary Teresa Hayden (1862 – 12 July 1942) was an Irish historian, Irish-language activist and campaigner for women's causes.


Mary Hayden was educated initially at the Dominican College, Eccles Street and then at Alexandra College in Dublin. She attended the Royal University of Ireland where she graduated with a BA (1885) and an MA (1887) in Modern Languages. With Agnes O'Farrelly she campaigned for women's rights in the university.[1]

A campaigner for gender equality and noted as a public speaker, she was a prominent member of the Dublin Women's Suffrage Association. She was a member of the Gaelic League and friends with Padraig Pearse. However, she opposed violence and disapproved of the 1916 Easter Rising.

In 1911 she was elected to the senate of the National University of Ireland and in 1915 was appointed Professor of History at University College Dublin, a position she retained until her death.[2]

Hayden worked with Mary Gwynn to establish the Irish Catholic Women's Suffrage Association (ICWSA) in 1915.[3][4]

She helped to form the Women's Social and Progressive League as a political party committed to opposing the 1937 Constitution of Ireland and any regressive consequences it would entail. She opposed articles 40, 41, and 45 concerning the status of women.

A biography of Hayden Mary Hayden: Irish Historian and Feminist by Joyce Padbury was published by Arlen House in 2020.


  • A Short History of the Irish People by Mary Hayden and George Moonan(1921)
  • Diaries of Mary Hayden 1878–1903 edited by Conan Kennedy (National Library of Ireland/Morrigan, 2008)
  • The Mysterious Mary H. : A Selection of Writings by Mary Hayden (1862–1942) (Morrigan Books, 2008).


  1. ^ "Mary Hayden (1862–1942)". Archived from the original on 15 June 2007. Retrieved 30 September 2013.
  2. ^ Ruane, Medb Ten Dublin Women. Dublin, 1991.
  3. ^ Padbury, Joyce. "Mary Hayden (1862-1942)". The Irish Times. Retrieved 17 April 2019.
  4. ^ Pašeta, Senia (2013). Irish Nationalist Women, 1900-1918. Cambridge University Press. p. 89. ISBN 9781107047747.