was born in Dublin, the youngest of four surviving children born to Dr. Robert Emmet, physician to the lord lieutenant, and his wife Elizabeth. Robert entered Trinity College, Dublin in 1793 where he joined the Society of United Irishmen. Their aim was to end Ireland's domination by England. In 1798, following an unsuccessful rebellion, he fled to France where he tried to canvass support for Irish independence. He met Napoleon Bonaparte but doubted if he could rely on his help, and returned to Dublin in 1892 to plan an uprising without the French. On July 23, 1803, Emmet led one hundred followers through the capital, intending to capture Dublin Castle, the seat of British government. The rebels were defeated, and Emmet went into hiding in the hills outside the city. He was eventually arrested, tried, and hanged on September 20, 1803. His grave has never been found.
was the youngest daughter of John Philpot Curran, an eminent Irish lawyer. She met Emmet through her brother Richard, who was a follow student at Trinity College. Her father considered Emmet unsuitable, and their courtship was conducted through letters and clandestine meetings. When John Philpot Curran discovered that Sarah was secretly engaged, he treated her so harshly that she had to take refuge with friends in Cork, where she met and married Captain Robert Sturgeon in November 1805. They had a child who did not survive infancy, and Sarah died of consumption on May 5, 1808.