Glasnevin

From Academic Kids

Glasnevin is a residential neighbourhood on the Northside of the city of Dublin and south of the Ballymun area. Glasnevin contains Glasnevin Cemetery, the most historically notable cemetery in the country, the Irish National Botanic Gardens, and Dublin City University.

Contents

Doyles Corner

Approaching Glasnevin via Phibsboro is what is known as "Hart's Corner" (previously "Doyles Corner" and "Dunphy's Corner") [1] (http://www.irishpubguide.ie/Irish%20Pub%20Guide/dublin/70.htm) but which about a 200 years ago was called Glasmanogue, and was then a well-known stage on the way to Finglas. At an earlier date the name possessed a wider signification and was applied to a considerable portion of the adjoining district.

Grounds

Apart from the great cemetery by which the locality is best known, Glasnevin is interesting chiefly by reason of the distinguished people who in bygone days made it their residence or resort. Of these perhaps the best known and most identified with the place is the celebrated divine, Dr. Delany, who lived here in the 18th century, and who assembled around the table in his charming house, Delville, all the Dublin wits and celebrities of his time. Doubtless the chief attraction to many of the visitors was the talented hostess, Mrs.

Delany[2] (http://www.uwic.ac.uk/icrc/journal001/delany/delany2.htm), to whose taste and refinement Delville owes much of its present interest. Swift and Stella were both in the habit of visiting the hospitable proprietors of Delville, and Swift wrote a squib jocosely satirising the grounds which he considered too small for the size of the house.

The gardens are laid out to the best advantage, and retained in 1920, in their main features, the design of their originator. They contained a number of magnificent trees and shrubs, among which are arbutus, ilex and yew, many of them of venerable appearance. A pretty stream, spanned by rustic bridges, flowed through the grounds which are well enclosed, forming a delightful retreat, notwithstanding the rapid encroachment of the city in this direction.

A miniature temple, bearing the motto "Fastigia despicit urbis" (it looks down upon the pinnacles of the city), said to have been suggested by Swift, stands on a slight eminence in the grounds, and contains a medallion of Stella by Mrs. Delany.

Village of Glasnevin

The village of Glasnevin has, of course, been much altered since Dr. Delany's time, and is now included in the city, but a few of the older houses still remain, and are readily distinguished by their old-world gardens, with their wealth of flowering shrubs and climbing plants. It would seem to have been an undesirable place of residence in the beginning of the 18th century, if we are to believe the description given by Archbishop King in a letter, dated 1725, published in Mant's History of the Church of Ireland :- "Glasnevin was the receptacle for thieves and rogues. The first search when anything was stolen, was there, and when any couple had a mind to retire to be wicked there was their harbour. But since the church was built, and service regularly settled, all these evils are banished. Good houses are built in it, and the place civilised."

Adjoining Glasnevin are the Botanic Gardens where stood the residence of Tickell, the poet and literary executor of Addison who came to Ireland as secretary to the Earl of Wharton in 1709. Tickell, who was Clerk of the Privy Council, died here in 1740, and from his representatives the place was purchased about 120 years ago, for its present purposes, by the Royal Dublin Society.

Community

Nowadays, Glasnevin is a vibrant community, largely comprising of a mix of young families and their more senior counterparts from the middle of the last century. As well as the amenities of the Botanic Gardens and local parks, the national meteorological office, Met Éireann (http://www.meteireann.ie/), the Central Fisheries Board (http://www.cfb.ie/), and the national enterprise and trade board, Enterprise Ireland (http://www.enterprise-ireland.com), are all located in the area. The team sports of gaelic football, hurling, camogie, basketball and football all thrive through the local clubs Na Fianna, Tolka Rovers and Home Farm (http://www.dublincityfc.net/).

References

  • Weston St. John Joyce, "The Neighbourhood of Dublin" (third and enlarged edition 1920). CHAPTER XXVI, "Glasnevin, Finglas and the adjacent district" (scanned in by Ken Finlay).
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