Son of Charles James The O Donoghue of the Glen and Jane O Connell, educated at Stonyhurst, became MP for Tipperary in 1857.
He was a liberal and vied with James Stephens for control of the Fenian Society . As MP he strove for the establishment of a separare Irish parliament but exceeded his financial resources, gave up the Tipperary seat and became member for Tralee in 1865. He was challenged to a duel by Sir Robert Peel and, bankrupt, retired from politics in 1870.
He married Marie Sophie Ennis, heiress to a vast estate at Ballinahown in Westmeath, and became the Chief of the Name who first moved away from Kerry. In 1889 he was buried in Muckross Friary.