So here I am, lovers of castles and old things and much to my surprise, Dublin Castle is not the “old castle” that I just assumed. We Americans just assume the word castle means old as dirt and tons of battles must have had here and dungeons, blood, guts and wenching. Possibly royalty and money! Wrong. Yes, castles have some of this and so do houses!! We just tend to make it what we want!
Dublin Castle was and is the most important buildings in Irish history. This according to the website http://www.dublincastle.ie/history/
It was the seat of the English from 1204 to 1922. It was the principal residence for British monarchy’s representative called the Viceroy of Ireland. It was an administrative and ceremonial center. King John, remember him? Robin Hood and his merry men getting the best of King John, well it was originally developed as a medieval fortress from orders from this King John.
It was constructed on elevated ground that the Vikings had there as a settlement earlier in its history. There was a fire in April of 1684 which caused a lot of damage to most of the building. Parts of the Viking and medieval structures did survive even after the fire and visitors can explore this today!
Our tour guide, Brian was great with his history and the stories of Dublin Castle and the surrounding area. I have had four tour guides and they all tell the same story of Dublin Castle and its significance!!!
What I can tell you about the Irish
They are proud people, they love their country and know so much about their history. Granted I was talking to tour guides, but The Constitution of the Irish Free State is and in all around places in Dublin.
Now, I have not spent too much time in other counties or towns, but I am sure that the feelings are the same. They are very proud of their independence and if brings pride to my heart. I have learned that many many Irish were displaced from their home country and the atrocities they went through here and abroad, but I know that one or more of my ancestors may have endured this.
After the fire and new castle was built and in the late 17th and 18th centuries, it changed from a stronghold to a Georgian palace. The Viceroy was still there under English rule. Today Brian said, and still is an architectural highlight of Georgian Dublin. January 16th, 1922, the last Viceroy ever handed to Michael Collins and the newly independent Irish State, Dublin Castle.
This marked the end of the British presence and came about in the wake of the 1916 Easter Rising and the Irish War of Independence. This created the Republic of Ireland and was synonymous with Dublin Castle. It still is used for important events and each presidential inaugurated since 1938 is done in St. Patricks Hall.
The Castle Gardens
Dublin Castle has had gardens since the early years of the 17th century
The gardens are south of Chapel Royal and the State Apartments in an enclosed stone wall. Enter through the wrought-iron gates of the incredible Celtic inspired spirals.
Well, folks, that I think this has been one of my most “educational” posts, not as many pictures or videos, but let me tell you, I have learned so much about Ireland in the few days that I have been here and I want to learn more.
Thank you for reading, following or stopping by. Please check out all my other posts from amazing places I have been lucky enough to go! Did you know Bram Stroker worked here? Small world huh.
As always, comments or corrections are appreciated!
go dtí an chead uair eile