Thomas Teevan (attorney general)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Thomas Teevan
Judge of the High Court
In office
30 January 1954 – 4 March 1971
Nominated byGovernment of Ireland
Appointed bySeán T. O'Kelly
12th Attorney General of Ireland
In office
11 July 1953 – 30 January 1954
TaoiseachÉamon de Valera
Preceded byCearbhall Ó Dálaigh
Succeeded byAindrias Ó Caoimh
Personal details
Born(1903-05-12)12 May 1903
Cavan, Ireland
Died8 June 1976(1976-06-08) (aged 73)
Dublin, Ireland
Political partyFianna Fáil
Spouse(s)Gertrude McCall
(m. 1928; d. 1976)
RelationsKevin Myers (Nephew)
Alma materUniversity College Dublin

Thomas Teevan (12 May 1903 – 8 June 1976) was an Irish barrister and judge who served as a Judge of the High Court from 1954 to 1971 and Attorney General of Ireland from 1953 to 1954.

He was born in County Cavan, the second son of Dr. Francis Teevan and his wife Anne. The family moved to Dundalk where he went to the Christian Brothers School and then to University College Dublin. He initially qualified as a solicitor in 1925; was called to the Bar 1936, Senior Counsel 1946. He stood unsuccessfully for election at the 1948 general election. He was appointed Attorney General of Ireland by Éamon de Valera in 1953, until he was appointed a judge of the High Court in 1954, where he served until 1971. He died in 1976.[1]

Thomas married Gertrude McCall (1904–2001) with whom he had two sons, Diarmuid and Richard, and was the uncle of the journalist Kevin Myers who recalled his uncle as "a gentleman, scholarly and kind".[2]

His first case as a judge was probably the most memorable: the unsuccessful libel action by Patrick Kavanagh against the Leader magazine. Such was the interest that members of the public queued for hours in the hope of getting into the courtroom.[citation needed]

As both barrister and judge he was an expert on rights of way, a field of law which he admitted did nothing to improve one's view of human nature. Giving judgement in the case of Connell v. Porter (21 December 1967) he described the behaviour of both parties as " disgusting" and made the memorable remark: "It is a strange paradox of our times that concurrently with so much alertness to personal rights, very many people flagrantly and callously do serious hurt to the feelings, rights and properties of others and expect immunity for their trespasses".[citation needed]


  1. ^ Casey, James " The Irish Law Officers " Round Hall Sweet and Maxwell Dublin 1996
  2. ^ An Irishman's Diary, Kevin Myers, Irish Times, 9 March 2001
Legal offices
Preceded by
Cearbhall Ó Dálaigh
Attorney General of Ireland
Succeeded by
Aindrias Ó Caoimh
Retrieved from ""