Wednesday 22 May 2019

Listen to A History of the Easter Rising in 10 Objects Ep 7: Damaged Books from Marsh's Library

The seventh in a ten part podcast series on a 'History of the Easter Rising in 10 Objects' discusses books from Marsh's library that were damaged by British gunfire.

Some of the more unexpected victims of the Easter Rising reside on the shelves of Marsh’s Library, in St Patrick's Close in Dublin. It has the distinction of being the first public library in Ireland, having been established by Narcissus Marsh, the Church of Ireland bishop of Dublin, at the beginning of the eighteenth-century.

Three centuries after Marsh's death, troops were located beside the library that bore his name in St Patrick's Park. This ensured that Marsh’s lay between them, the Volunteer positions in Jacobs Factory on Bishop Street, and the Dubin Metropolitan Police Station on Kevin Street.

The area was relatively quiet and free of fighting, but according to the library's minutes, 'on the morning of Sunday 30 April a machine-gun was inadvertantly turned on the library from St Patrick's Park'.

'A History of the Easter Rising in 50 Objects' by John Gibney is available now.

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