GLYNN, Patrick McMahon (1855-1931)

GLYNN, Patrick McMahon (1855-1931)
was born at Gort, County Galway, Ireland, on 25 August 1855. Educated at the French College, Blackrock, he was articled to a solicitor at Dublin, graduated B.A. at Dublin in 1878, and subsequently took the LL.B. degree. He was called to the Irish bar in 1879 and emigrated to Victoria in the following year. In 1882 he went to South Australia and practised his profession at Adelaide and Kapunda, where he also edited for some time the Kapunda Herald. In 1887 he was elected to the South Australian assembly for Light, and in 1895 he became the representative of North Adelaide. He was prominent in the federal movement, was elected one of the representatives of South Australia at the 1897 convention, sat on the judiciary committee, and did useful work. In 1899 he became attorney-general in the Solomon ministry which, however, lasted only a week.
At the first federal election Glynn was returned to the house of representatives as member for Angas and was subsequently more than once elected unopposed for this electorate. He showed ability and knowledge as a constitutional lawyer. He was active in the negotiations on the Murray waters question, and was chairman of the inter-state commission which drafted the Murray waters bill of 1907. He became attorney-general in the Deakin (q.v.) ministry in June 1909 and minister for external affairs in the Cook ministry from June 1913 to September 1914. He visited England at the invitation of the Imperial parliamentary association in 1916, and on his return was minister for home and territories in the Hughes ministries from February 1917 until February 1920. Defeated at the general election at the end of 1919 he retired from politics, and died on 28 October 1931. He married Abigail Dynon, who predeceased him, and was survived by two sons and four daughters. He was a fine Shakespearian scholar; several of his literary papers were published, as were also various legal and political pamphlets.
Glynn was a highly cultivated, eloquent Irishman who became a good Australian. He exercised much influence in South Australia in the later stages of the federation campaign, and proved himself an excellent fighter in the federal arena especially in connexion with legal matters and the constitution.
The Advertiser, Adelaide, 29 October 1931; H. G. Turner, The First Decade of the Australian Commonwealth.

Dictionary of Australian Biography by PERCIVAL SERLE. . 1949.

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