Friday, 9 June 2017

Nice! It looked like a good day brewing outside and I had a few places to visit. I followed a church tour I put together that included some Irish history.

First stop was St. Patrick’s Cathedral – founded in 1191. It is the National Cathedral of the Church of Ireland. It is the tallest church in Ireland with a 43 meter spire.

When I entered the cathedral, there were so many people. Seemed like there were more people in this church than in St. Paul’s in London. Enjoyed talked with the person in charge of the tickets – she asked where I was from and I said “Oregon” and she announced that the state capital is Salem. Wow! All this while taking my money and issuing the ticket. She was good! I also heard her say a few words in Italian to the people ahead of me. Nice when someone really likes what they do – and adds their own special touch.

One of most notable people associated (and buried) with the church is Jonathan Swift, who among other things, wrote Gulliver’s Travels. Along with a nice marker on the floor (below) of the cathedral, there was a death mask of him and his skull. Irish are not too shy about these sort of things.

When I got outside, it looks the Marsh family in Ireland helped with a library for the church. I have no idea if we’re related. Our Marsh line is from Kent, England.

From there I returned to Christchurch Cathedral. I had only taken pictures from the outside and hadn’t gone into the building. This church, while at an older location (1028 AD), was remodeled at the end of the 19th century. Here you will find the resting place of Strongbow (Richard de Clare, 2nd Earl of Pembroke) who lead the Norman invasion of Ireland (against the Vikings).

Christchurch is shown below and in the background is the church that is home to Dublinia.

Strongbow (below)

In the large crypt there are a number of exhibits including the priceless church artifacts.

Across the street is Dublinia, a historical exhibit highlighting Ireland’s history from the Vikings and Medieval periods and built on the site of the medieval church of St. Michael. The exhibits were very well done and staff with volunteers who where there to answer questions. On the upper floor, we saw current archaeological work currently underway and the tools used for this work. From there, crossing the bridge ┬áback over to Christchurch, we were able to climb the 96 steps up the tower of the church. You can take pictures of Dublin from all directions.

A lot of churches for one day. I feel well-informed of Ireland’s history – but understand there is more still waiting for me to discover. But that will be another day.

Nice to come back to the flat and relax at the end of the day.





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