Bethel Solomons - played for Ireland ten times

Discussion in 'Sportsmen & women' started by liverpool annie, Jun 13, 2009.

  1. liverpool annie

    liverpool annie New Member

    Now here's an interesting man .... off topic again I'm afraid - but really worthy of a mention ! :) I would have loved to have sat down and talked to him !!

    Bethel Solomons
    Ireland
    Full name Bethel Albert Herbert Solomons
    Born February 27, 1885, Dublin
    Died September 11, 1965, (registered in) Wandsworth (aged 80 years 196 days)
    Major teams Ireland
    Position Forward

    Bethel Solomons (1885-1965), later a leading gynecologist, played for Ireland ten times in 1908-10

    Bethel Solomons, another Jewish success, an Irish international and later Master of the Rotunda whose own memoir One Doctor in His Time was published in 1956. Solomons’ sister Estella, a member of the Honorary Council of the Royal Hibernian Academy (HRHA) was an accomplished portrait and landscape painter

    Bethal A. H. Solomons M.D., F.R.C.P.I., F.R.C.O.G., F.A.C.S. (1885-1965)

    Bethel Solomons was born in 1885 in Dublin to a prominent jewish family, he became a medical doctor and was Master of the Rotunda Hospital in Dublin from 1926 to 1933, an international rugby player for Ireland and supporter of the 1916 Rising.

    He attended St. Andrews School in Dublin where he was very interested in sport, and he went on to study medicine in Trinity College, Dublin and he earned 10 international rugby caps for Ireland (1908-1910).

    In a biography of Dr Solomons he was described as World famous obstetrician & gynaecologist, Rugby international, horseman, leader of Liberal Jewry & of Irish literary & artistic renaissance

    He was from one of the oldest continuous lines of Jews in Ireland, who came over from England in 1824. His father Maurice Solomons(1832-1922), an optician who had a practice in 19 Nassau St., is mentioned by James Joyce in Ulysses, he is mentioned in Finnegan's Wake. His mother Rosa Jacobs Solomons (1833-1926) was born in Hull in England. He served as president of the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland (RCPI) in the late 1940s and he practiced from No. 30 Lr. Baggot Street.

    Solomons was a founding member and the first president of the Liberal Synagogue in Dublin. He married Gertrude Levy, in the Liberal synagogue in London in 1916.

    His elder brother Edwin (1879-1964) was a stockbroker and prominent member of the Dublin Jewish community. His sister Estella Solomons (1882-1968) was a leading artist painting landscapes and portraits including Jack Yeats and George Russell, she was active in politics and a member of Cumann na mBan during the 1916 rising, she married poet and publisher Seamus O'Sullivan.

    His second son Dr Michael Solomons (1919-2007) was a distinguished gynaecologist, a pioneer of family planning in Ireland and a veteran of the bitter and divisive 1983 constitutional amendment campaign.
  2. Harry Roberts

    Harry Roberts New Member

    Also off-topic: Bethel Solomons lived a few doors down the road from me when I was a child. He was wonderful old man. Every so often he would pack a load of children from our road into his station wagon, take us to Bray and buy us ice creams.

    I didn't know until today that he had played Rugby for Ireland. (Pity about yesterday, but we did beat the Aussies two years ago.) My father used to refer to Bethel's son as 'my dear friend Michael Solomons'.

    Bethel came to mind today so I Googled his name and there was a huge amount of information about him. Amusingly, sitting on a coach from London to Manchester in the 70's I fell into conversation with a nice elderly English Jewish lady and, when I told her I was from Dublin, she asked me if I knew Bethel. (He had died in 1965.) 'Of course' I said 'he lived just down the road from me'. Both of my children were born in the Rotunda where Bethel was master for many years.

    I had also forgotten that he was an accomplished horseman (master of The Kildare Hunt, I believe) and today a forgotten image of him came to mind - on a horse, wearing a top hat (Bethel wearing the hat, not the horse.) I wondered if that image came from seeing him so or whether it was from his autobiography 'One Doctor in his Time' which my parents had. I think that it was from the latter.

    Bethel's daughter, also in the 1970's, summoned me for tea in her apartment on Sloane Square where I was introduced to her daughter Soosie (spelling?) I took it from that that the Solomons family approved of us but I never met either of them again.

    Yours,

    Harry

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