Yesterday in Dublin

There was a bit of a heatwave in Ireland over the weekend (only 23 degrees, but that’s hot for here).

I did all the Dublin sightseeing years ago, but am revisiting many of the places.

The pictures below are of Dublin Castle, St Patrick’s Cathedral, and Christ Church Cathedral (even though they’re the “big two” churches to visit here, they’re not Catholic, because of conflicts in the past).





On this day: the Irish government stands up to the Catholic Church

On the 12th of March, 1985, the government of the Republic of Ireland finally stood up to the powerful Catholic Church and legalised contraception.


Women leave Dublin on their protest journey to Belfast.

The 1970s saw feminists travelling to Belfast in Northern Ireland and returning home with contraceptives, risking arrest for importing illegal products. They were met by protestors upon their arrival home.

Illegal in the Republic in all circumstances until 1980, a new law allowed some contraception to be dispensed by a pharmacist to people with a doctor’s prescription.

This highly restrictive law was finally changed five years later, despite conservative opposition.


Some Americans were so outraged that “Holy Ireland” now allowed contraception, they wrote to the Prime Minister to complain.

Even so, advertising of contraceptives was still banned, and Ireland continued to have one of the highest birth rates in the developed world.

On this day: Dublin in ruins

This photograph of Dublin was taken on the 14th of May, 1916. It shows ruins in Dublin after the Easter Rising of 24-29 April.

The Easter Rising was a rebellion against British rule in Ireland. The rebellion was not a success.


Easter-Rising-1916-File photo dated 14-05-1916 of a view from Nelson's Column showing ruins in the city of Dublin.


On this day: Dublin in ruins

These photographs of Dublin were taken on the 11th of May, 1916. They show ruins in Dublin after the Easter Rising of 24-29 April.

The Easter Rising was a rebellion against British rule in Ireland. The rebellion was not a success.

The first picture is of is the city’s main thoroughfare.


Easter-Rising-1921-File photo dated 11-05-1916 of Sackville Street (O'Connell St) and the River Liffey at Eden Quay showing the devastation wrought during the 'Easter Rising'.

Easter-Rising-1916-File photo dated 11-05-1916 of Sackville Street from the Nelson Column after the Rising in Dublin

On this day: British troops in Dublin

British troops at a roadblock outside Cassidy’s Grocery in Dublin, Ireland on the 30th of April, 1916. This is the day after the conclusion of the Easter Rising, a failed Irish rebellion against rule from Britain.


Easter-Rising-File photo dated 30-04-1916 of British troops at a road block outside Cassidy's Grocery during the Easter Rising in Dublin, 1916.

On this day: the premiere of Handel’s Messiah

The Musick Hall in Fishacre Street, Dublin, where Messiah was first performed.

Musick Hall in Fishacre Street, where the first performance took place.

George Frideric Handel’s English-language oratorio, Messiah, premiered in Dublin, Ireland on the 13th of April, 1742.

Messiah was composed over a period of only twenty-four days. Handel worked on the music while in London, where he had been living for some years.

George Frideric Handel in 1733, by Balthasar Denner (1685–1749).

Handel in 1733

The premiere in Dublin came during a series of concerts Handel presented in Ireland, and the first performance used the cathedral choirs of St Patrick’s and Christ Church.