Sunday, July 24, 2011

Ireland, Dublin

One of the key historical sites in Dublin is Trinity College. Built in the 1500s and home to some impressive alumni: Jonathan Swift, Oscar Wilde, Bram Stoker to name a few that I recognized. It is also home to the Book of Kells. It is a beautifully hand illustrated manuscript of the four gospels dating back to AD 800s. It is considered one of Irelands national treasures. It open for viewing, but we really didn't get a good look at the real thing. Some lady was quite intent on hovering over it and reading the whole thing.
I doubt she read ancient Latin. Also of note is the old library. ( no pictures) It looked something out of a Harry Potter movie with over 200,000 books from 200 to 300 years ago.

We took a little side trip to the coastal town of Howth.

With our friends Tom and Cyndie Miller in Howth.
Of course we had to see the first showing of the new Harry Potter movie. Here we are with our friends the Barbaras outside Cineworld Dublin.
Just outside of Dublin is the Malahide Castle. This was the home of the Talbot Family for over 800 years.
This has got to be the most beautiful tree I have ever seen. Jared take note.

Kilmainham Gaol (pronounced Jail) is another of the Irish sites of great historical significance. It is here where the leaders of the 1916 uprising at the Post Office were imprisioned and most of them shot. It was the simpathy for these leaders that turned the hearts and minds of a greater number of Irishmen to support the move for separation and independence from England.
The inscription above the door reads: "Beware of the risen people that have harried and held, ye that have bullied and bribed".

This is the General Post Office. The Revolution that began the road to Ireland's independence in 1916 began here.

Marla and our friend Cyndie Miller on Grafton Street in Dublin.
City view Dublin.
While in Dublin we visited Saint Patrick's Cathedral. Patrick was an itinerant preacher who came to Ireland in AD 432. He was not the first Christian but is considered most influencial in the spread of Christianity on the Island. Out side the Cathedral is an interesting statue of Benjamin Lee Guinness. ( Of beer brewing fame) Apparently he paid for a new floor in the Catheldral after Oliver Cromwell kept his draft horses in the Cathedral after one of the many squirmishes between the British and the Irish. The Origins of the Cathedral go back to the 12th Century.

This is a view of Christ Church Cathedral. Also dating from the 12th century.
City view of Dublin.

On our way to Dublin we stopped in the coastal town of Dalkey for a "Pub Crawl" There is plenty of drinking going on in a "Pub Crawl" (We became especially fond of Orange and Lemon Club. Non -Alcoholic sodas.) There is also entertainment along the way. In one pub we watched Irish Dancing, in another we learned to play the Tin Whistle and Bodhron (Pronounced Bodron) (Irish drum), and in the final pub we listened to a great traditional music session while every else tasted whiskey.
Coastal view of Dalkey.

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