Friday 9 December 2016

Scintillating, brilliant, humane and full of conviction

Donncha O’Connell

Published 08/03/2016 | 02:30

Adrian with his wife, former Circuit Court Judge Yvonne Murphy and their sons (from left) Eoin, Hugh and Daniel in 1998
Adrian with his wife, former Circuit Court Judge Yvonne Murphy and their sons (from left) Eoin, Hugh and Daniel in 1998

It would be odd to agree with everything said by a judge - on and off the bench - over a 15-year judicial career.

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I had more than my fair share of disagreements with the late Mr Justice Adrian Hardiman since his appointment to the Supreme Court in 2000. Yet even when he was at his most disagreeable, he was brilliant and never boring. At a personal level he could be deeply humane and insightful about human nature. He was scintillating about almost everything else.

It was quite impossible - even if it might, at times, have been easier - to find him dislikeable. The grief expressed by friends, colleagues and even adversaries on his sudden and premature passing is felt very genuinely.

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