Hello there, Beastiebuddies, and happy Friday!
Today, Explorer Beastie and I want to take you to another part of Dublin you may not have seen before. Come and join us as we wander down the side of Merrion Square, and head towards the Grand Canal!
Around here, you can see some great examples of Georgian townhouses – a style of architecture which still dominates large areas of Dublin’s city centre, both north and south of the river. The first “Georgian-style” buildings date back to the 1720s, when many of Dublin’s narrow mediaeval streets were widened, and a property boom encouraged developers to build new houses on what were then the very edges of the city. It’s strange to think that what I consider to be the heart of Dublin was once almost the countryside!
Unlike modern-day developers, the Georgian builders were given pretty strict guidelines about how their houses should look. So in these areas, you can expect to see big, often brightly-coloured front doors, with a semi-circular “fanlight” window over them…
There are usually steps to raise them up above street level, and they tend to be tall (by Irish standards) with a basement underneath. To pick up extra Georgian status points, add an imposing door knocker…
… Or an elaborate iron boot scraper!
And of course there’s a prize if you spot a house with a famous former resident!
You can also find out more about what life was like inside these houses a little further down the street, at Number Twenty Nine – a faithfully restored Georgian-style house, which is open to visitors all year round. We didn’t go inside this time, but we’ve been before and it’s definitely worth a look!
Further down Mount Street, we stopped for a quick game of hide and seek…
…And then carried on to find one of Dublin’s lesser-known landmarks – St Stephen’s Church, affectionately known to Dubliners as “The Pepper Canister”!
Building work began on the church in 1821, as more people starting moving to this part of the city. It’s a perfect spot to stop for some photos…
… Before heading back home!
I wonder where Explorer Beastie will pop up next? Tune in next week to find out!
24 thoughts on “Exploring Georgian Dublin”
What a clever little way to make the area interesting. Thanks for taking us on your travels. those doors have always captured my interest with their bright colors and interesting knockers.
I know! I always love walking around these areas… So it was nice to bring you all along with me this time 😀
Thanks for that architecture tour. I have sadly never been to Dublin (but would love to go some time, especially since I am a Joyce fan) but several of your photos made me think of Edinburgh and its rows of Georgian properties in grey northern light.
Haha! The sun definitely didn’t have his hat on that day, unfortunately! Edinburgh is a great city too, although it’s a while since I was last there. Perhaps we should revisit in the name of improving our knowledge of Georgian architecture. As for visiting Dublin, you could always stop by for the Bloomsday celebrations…
That’s something I’ve always wanted to do actually. Maybe some day when I’m back visiting family in England and Scotland I can hop over to Ireland.
You definitely should! Dublin’s just a short hop by plane, so a lot of UK visitors just pop over for the weekend 😀
My friends and I had a plan to visit Dublin for a long weekend but then I emigrated. We met in Manhattan instead.
Nice! I don’t think we could compete with that! 😀
The boot scraper is amazing. Such detail! Did Explorer Beastie notice if they were all the same or were there different styles?Dublin looks really interesting, well worth a visit. Thanks for sharing it with us.
You’re welcome! There did seem to be a few different designs of boot scrapers along the way, although unfortunately I only photographed Explorer Beastie cleaning his paws on one of them! A lot of smaller houses in other parts of the city have these outside too, but they’re much less fancy. Makes you wonder what the streets were like in those days!
Thanks for the tour Explorer Beastie! On my first trip to Dublin many moons ago we got the bus from the airport and I remember seeing all the lovely fanlights above the doors on the houses. The House Museum sounds really interesting, one to bookmark for the next visit 🙂
Definitely! They do guided tours if you like, or you can wander around by yourself. I’ve always loved these buildings, and I think it’s great that so many of them have survived into this century… Apparently we went through a bit of a phase of demolishing them in the 1950s and 60s!
Nooo! Thank goodness they left some 😄
I know! Turns out that sometimes it’s better (in the long term) for the government to be a bit strapped for cash!
I see a new marketing opportunity/knitting project…Beastie Door Knocker decorations!
Heeheehee! I should get knitting now, and decorate an entire street… Monster-tastic! 😀
Can I volunteer my street as your starting point? 😋😋
Certainly! We’re on our way… We want to do our bit to help keep Portland weird! 😀
Well, Portland could use a bit of “un-weirding” but some Beastie bombing would be perfect. And they’d feel right at home with the weather we’re having.
Aaah, so THAT’S where all our rain has gone lately! Sorry about that, I’m sure it’ll be back with us soon enough…
EB, you should be a little careful while hopping around. How did you catch the door knocker? Don’t get hurt during your adventures please. 🙂
I was aware of the fanlight windows but have finally seen them through a Dublin resident’s lens. Thank you, Helen, for sharing! 🙂
Awaiting the next week’s tour! 😀
Heehee, thanks! Explorer Beastie is lucky because he doesn’t have any bones to break… That means he can jump, climb and run around as much as he likes! I’m still not 100% sure how he climbed up onto the door knocker though. Thanks for your comment! 😀
What a lucky being! 😀
Pleasure is all mine! 🙂