In St. Patrick's Park you can see the sculpture of the Liberty Bell, so called as this area of Dublin is known as "THE LIBERTIES". The Liberties have existed since the Anglo Saxons arrived here in the 12th century, and were lands that belonged to the city of Dublin but they preserved their own jurisdiction. There were two Liberties in particular that were important, Liberty of St. Sepulchre, under the Archbishop of Dublin, and the Liberty of Thomas Court and Donore belonging to the Abbey of St. Thomas , and stilltoday the area of Dublin that is called the Liberties refer to these two areas in the inner city.
St. Patrick's Park opened up in 1904 after being developed by Lord Iveagh who actually maintained it until 1920 when the corporation took it over. Up to this time it was a crowded city slum but the residents were evicted so the planning could go ahead. The River Poodle used to run through here bit it is now underground but if tradition is to be believed Saint Patrick baptised the first Irish Christians here from the river's water. The park is a very pleasant place to stop and relax on one of its many benches that are by the paths or beautiful flower gardens. You may walk over to the east side of the park where there are many plaques that commemorate some of Ireland's greatest writers.
Johnathan Swift, Bernard Shaw, Oscar Wilde, James Mangan, William Yeats, James Joyce, Samuel Beckett and many more are commemorated.
So much has been written about the cathedral i will not add to it, but just mention a few bits and pieces.
The Cathedral and grounds had the largest enclosed space in Ireland for many years.
Jonathan Swift, author of Gulliver's Travels has his final resting place here.
The President of Ireland attends Remembrance Day ceremony here every November
Oliver Cromwell stabled his horses in the nave when he was here.
A wooden St. Patrick's Church stood on this site for nearly 600 years before the present building
There are 500 people buried underneath the cathedral floor.
The Cathedral was almost next door to our hotel, but we waited until our fourth day in Dublin before visiting. It is an impressive structure with an equally interesting interior.
There is a park next to the cathedral.
During the 19th Century, Irish beer baron Benjamin Guinness was a member of St. Patrick's. Guinness made very generous contributions to the building (and re-building) fund, and the structure of the building was "restored" heavily at that time. Unfortunately, record-keeping was somewhat lax, so it is difficult to tell exactly what in the Cathedral in medieval, and what is 19th century.
We do know that the Tower - said to be the tallest Cathedral Tower in Ireland - was constructed in the 14th century, between 1362 and 1370. It's know as "Minot's Tower," after the Archbishop of Dublin of the day. (The spire was added in the late 18th century.)
St Patricks Cathedral is Ireland's largest church founded beside a scared well where St Patrick is said to have baptised converts around 450. AD. The Cathedral was founded in 1191 and it best know for it's famous Dean Jonathan Swift from 1713 to 1747. Also most famous for performing Handel's Messiah here in 1742. Inside you will find a permenent exhibition that celebrates St Patricks life in the city. Admission Charges for 2011
Unwaged: OAP, student, unemployed €3.50
Family: 2 adults, 2 children (under 16 years) €15.00
St Patrick’s Cathedral is named after St Partick, the patron saint of Ireland. It is said that he baptised converts in a well nearby.
There has been a church on this site since the 5th century but the present building dates from 1191. In 1224 the church got cathedral status. During the centuries the church has been damaged many times, by fire, storms and also in 1649 when Cromwell used the cathedral as stable for the army’s horses. So the cathedral has been restored many times.
Interesting to know is that Jonathan Swift (author of Gulliver’s Travels) was the cathedral dean between 1713 and 1745. He is buried in the church, together with his companion Esther Johnson (Stella).
There is an admission.
The cathedral is open:
Monday – Friday: 9.00 – 17.30
Saturday: 9.00 - 18.30 (March – October), 9.00 – 17.30 (November – February)
Sunday: 9.00 – 11.00, 12.30 – 15.00 and 16.30 – 18.30 (the last hours only in March – October)
In the Medieval District of Dublin lies one of Dublin's most famous churches also known as The National Cathedral and Collegiate Church of Saint Patrick, Dublin or "Árd Eaglais Naomh Pádraig". The Church was founded in 1191 C.E. and is the larger of Dublin's two Church of Ireland cathedrals as well as being the largest church in Ireland with a 140 foot spire. The Cathedral is in memorial to St. Patrick and his colored past in Ireland and is meant to lift the spirits of the Irish out of the realm of things and circumstances which change into a realm of things that are eternal and unchanging giving everyone a perspective in both space and time to be face-to-face with faith in God through Christ giving one true meaning and lasting satisfaction ... or so states the web site. This was the hotspot of activity for St. Patrick when he passed through Dublin on his journey through Ireland baptising converts from Paganism to Christianity in the well where the Cathedral now stands. In memorial, a small wooden church was built on the site to be one of the four Celtic parishes in Dublin. John Comyn, the first Anglo-Norman Archbishop of Dublin converted this small church into a Cathedral in 1191 C.E. THe current Cathedral was erected between 1200 and 1270. Much aging, erosion, degradation, disrepair, and some fires struck the Cathedral through time. Minot's Tower and the weset nave were rebuilt between 1362 and 1370 following a fire. St. Patrick's became an Anglican Church of Ireland after the English Reformation (ca. 1537) even though most of the population surrounding it in the Pale was wholely Catholic. During confiscation, some of the images within the Cathedral were defaced by Thomas Cromwell's soldiers and collapse of the Nave in 1544. Cromwell set up his stables in the Nave during his time in Dublin as a sign of his disrespect for the Anglican religion which he associated with Roman Catholicism and political Royalism. In 1560 one of Dublin's first public clocks was placed in St. Patrick's Steeple. In 1666 The roof was close to collapse and was replaced by 1671. When Jonathan Swift (author of Gulliver's Travels) became the Dean of the Cathedral from 1713-1745 he brought more attention to the needs of the Cathedral. He had himself buried there with his friend Stella who took great interest in the building and funding an almshouse for poor women and Saint Patrick's Hospital. 1769 the infamous spire (now a Dublin landmark) was added. From 1783 until 1871 the Cathedral became home to the Chapel of the Most Illustrious Order of Saint Patrick where the Knights of St. Patrick held their ceremonies until 1871 they moved to St. Patrick's Hall in Dublin Castle. By 1085 the north transept was in ruin and the south was deteriorating that emergency work had to be done on the nave roof. Funding issues, Problems with seepage of water, number of floods, and disrepair during times of religious reformation and Irish struggles - The Cathedral not being restored until 1860-1900 with a full-scale restoration done by the infamous Guinness family. Benjamin Guinness believed the Cathedral was in imminent danger of collapse especially the Victorian era artwork ... unfortunately most of these were removed and never replaced now no longer surviving. Since no records were kept during the restorations not much is known as to what is genuinely medieval and what is Victorian pastiche. Even though the Church is the largest in all of Ireland, it is not the seat of a Bishop as that is held by Christ Church Cathedral with St. Patrick's being the National Cathedral for the whole island. St. Patrick's is operated instead by a Dean, since 1219, and the most famous of which was Jonathan Swift. St. Patrick's was also the location for the funerals of two Irish Presidens: Dr Douglas Hyde and Erskine Hamilton in 1949 and 1974 respectively. In 2006 there was a group of 18 Afghan refugees who sought asylum within St. Patrick's staying there until persuaded to leave a few days later. The Cathedral receives no State funding so while free for those who come to pray, ask for a small fee in tourism. In 2006 the Cathedral had over 300,000 visitors.
This was built by the first Anglo-Norman Bishop, John Comyn in 1192, on the site of a little wooden Church dedicated to St Patrick.
You can find Jonathan Swift (author of Gulliver's Travels) buried here.
Open daily, has an admission charge.
I found this church to be more interesting then the Christ Church, but perhaps because of the serenity of the surrounding garden. It is supposed to by the biggest church in Ireland, and was built on the site of St Patrick's baptism. The cathedral was founded around 1200. Don't miss the opportunity to relax in the garden. It was built as a Catholic Church, but beginning in the 1500's became Protestant.
St. Patrick's Cathedral is the largest church in Ireland. Although many additions have been made over the years, especially during the 19th century when the cathedral was almost entirely restored thanks to a generous donation by the Guinness family, the building originally dates back to the end of the 12th century. It is of course a beautiful church, but what really made the visit interesting for me was the great display on the life and writings of Jonathan Swift, author of "Gulliver's Travels" and Dean of the cathedral from 1713 until his death 1745. Swift was buried in the cathedral next to "Stella", his life-long friend and muse, and both their graves can be seen. Another interesting feature is the Celtic cross that is believed to have marked the spot of the well from which St. Patrick himself drew water to baptize new converts. The grounds around the cathedral are also quite beautiful.
St. Patrick's Cathedral is open to visitors daily. There are no guided tours available, but there are free brochures that describe the highlights of the cathedral. Tickets: 5.50 Euros.
I was quite taken by surprise of the beauty of St. Patrick's and in my humble opinion found it to be more inviting and interesting than Christ Church. It is said to be the largest church in all of Ireland and the location of the current structure is said to have been built where St. Patrick baptized converts around 450 AD. I read that St. Patrick's Cathedral is seen as the "people's church" and today is the "Protestant Church of Ireland's national cathedral" **(Read this in my guide book).
There is a well which is covered by a stone slab that bears a celtic cross and was unearthed here over a century ago. It is located inside St. Patrick's at the end of the nave as you enter to your left.
Inside the cathedral you will find many memorial busts as well as tombs which are quite elaborate and colorful.
Like Christ Church, St. Patrick's charges an entrance fee.
Check out my travelogue on St. Patrick's Cathedral for pics of the well and of the tombs and memorial busts.