Discovering Marsh’s Library


We wandered through parts of Dublin we’d never seen before. We walked down the street by the Guinness Storehouse, which I vaguely recognized from when I got off the big, green tourist bus to visit almost three years ago. We found our way around St. Patrick’s Cathedral, and just as we thought it was probably lunch time, we found this..

Marsh’s Library. Opened in 1707, it was the first public library in Ireland and houses books and manuscripts from the 15th-18th centuries. There are two galleries, joined by a reading room, lined with dark oak bookshelves which hold everything from Bibles, to works on history, law, and politics. It is noted that Bram Stoker visited in 1866 and would have sat in the same chairs that are still in the reading room today.

When you come up the stairs there are several tall doors, and a note asking you to ring the bell. Someone will let you in to the library, take your 3EUR entrance fee, and explain a bit of the history. You’re then free to walk up and down the aisles, listening to the grandfather clock ticking away in the First Gallery, and taking in the distinct smell of history.

It’s a moderately quick visit, but worth a look.

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