Statement by the Supreme Court on the passing of The Hon. Mr. Justice Adrian Hardiman

Hardiman J 2014

Statement delivered by Chief Justice, Mrs Justice Susan Denham


The Court has learnt with great sadness of the death of our colleague The Hon. Mr. Justice Adrian Hardiman, Senior Ordinary Member of theSupreme Court of Ireland.

The State has lost a colossus of the legal world: a good and true friend has been lost by his colleagues on the Court.

Mr. Justice Hardiman had a most successful career as a barrister, he was a leader at the Bar, was renowned for his extensive practice and great skill, including in cross-examination.

After 26 years of practice he was appointed directly to the Supreme Court in 2000. Since that time he has added greatly to the legal jurisprudence of Ireland in many important judgments. He has written expressing the view of a majority of the Court, and he has written trenchant dissents.

This is not the time to analyse the great store of his judgments. However, an illustration may be seen in DPP v Gormley and DPP v White, where his judgment personifies his concern for the protection of persons and their dignity.

His profound knowledge of the law, and his fluency in expressing his views, have added immensely to the legal jurisprudence of this State.

He was a Renaissance man.

He was a historian. He spoke and wrote on many topics, including the Trial of Robert Emmet, the 1916 Rising, and we were looking forward to his lecture, on Easter Monday, here in the Four Courts, on The 1916 Proclamation.

He was a remarkable and engaging Joycean scholar. He has written on many aspects of James Joyce, and lectured at home and abroad, in riveting lectures, on this other great Irishman.

However, it is as a colleague and a friend that the members of the Court will miss him. His eloquence in conference, his depth of knowledge, his humour, but most of all his friendship, will be sorely missed by each member of the Court.

We send our deep regret to his wife Judge Yvonne Murphy, and to his sons, Eoin, Hugh and Daniel.

There will be other opportunities to reflect on Judge Hardiman’s profound contribution to Irish public life, but at this difficult time the Court limits itself to this collegiate statement.


Statement provided by the Media Relations Advisor of the Courts Service

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