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Monday 21 April 2014

Tributes pour in as O'Connell Street's 'dancing lady' Mary Dunne dies at 87

Mary Margaret Dunne beside the Anna Livia statue on Dublin's O'Connell Street in June 1988. Picture: Tom Burke
Mary Margaret Dunne beside the Anna Livia statue on Dublin's O'Connell Street in June 1988. Picture: Tom Burke

TRIBUTES have been paid to the 'dancing lady of O'Connell Street' Mary Dunne, who has died aged 87.

Mrs Dunne was a familiar figure in Dublin life in the 1980s and 1990s as she danced with rosary beads on footpaths at the centre of O'Connell Street.

An elegant and dignified lady, she will be remembered by generations of Dubliners for her warm smile and fervent religious belief. She wore large rosary beads around her neck and usually held another set of rosary beads in her hands as she danced in a circle as a form of prayer.

When asked about her public dancing, she would explain she was dancing for the Holy Trinity and the Virgin Mary. Poor health and fading eyesight contributed to her finally ending her public prayer dances.

A resident of Dun Laoghaire, the widowed mother's funeral Mass took place on Wednesday at the Church of the Holy Family on Kill Avenue, followed by burial at Deans Grange cemetery.

Dublin City Council member Christy Burke said: "She was a familiar sight to Dubliners and visitors to the city for many years. She was quite glamorous and always very elegantly dressed.

"I'm sad to hear she has passed away and I'd like to extend my deepest sympathy to her family," he said.

Tributes online stated she was "a legend" in Dublin life.

Irish Independent

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