The Street Rhymer
Our bar got its name from Michael J Moran (c. 1794 – 3 April 1846), popularly known as Zozimus. He was an Irish street rhymer, a resident of Dublin who was also known as the “Blind Bard of the Liberties” and the “Last of the Gleemen”. At two weeks old he was blinded by illness. He developed an astounding memory for verse and made his living reciting poems, many of which he had composed himself, in his own lively style.
Many of his rhymes had religious themes, others were political and recounted current events. He is said to have worn “a long, coarse, dark, frieze coat with a cape, the lower parts of the skirts being scalloped, an old soft, greasy, brown beaver hat, corduroy trousers and Francis Street brogues, and he carried a long blackthorn stick secured to his wrist with a strap.” He performed all over Dublin including at Essex Bridge, Wood Quay, Church Street, Dame Street, Capel Street, Sackville Street, Grafton Street, Henry Street, and Conciliation Hall. He began each oration with the verse:
Ye sons and daughters of Erin,
Gather round poor Zozimus, yer friend;
Listen boys, until yez hear
My charming song so dear.