Castillo, John

WM local preacher and author, born at Rathfarnham, near Dublin, he was brought by his Roman Catholic parents from Ireland to Lealholm Bridge (Yorks) at the age of 3. He became a stonemason and was converted from Roman Catholicism in 1818. Impressed by the spoken dialect of his evangelical seniors under whose influence he became a preacher in the Pickering Circuit in 1838, he began to use it in his writing and he became known as 'the Bard of the Dales'. The standard edition of his work was Poems in the North Yorkshire Dialect (1878). Stanzas of his most widely known poem, Awd Isaac, could still be repeated by local countrymen a century after its first appearance in 1832. He died at Pickering on 16 April 1845.

  • Methodist Recorder(W)1896, pp.31-3
  • WHS, Yorkshire Branch Bulletin, no. 9 (1966) pp.4-8
  • Oxford DNB


Entry written by: CJS
Category: Person
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