The Oldest Building in Dublin

Dublin is a vibrant, exciting city. Compared to other European capitals, however, it is not chock-full of museums and historical sites that are obvious to the casual visitor. As I learn the history of Ireland, the city is coming alive with important places that I find exciting.

All that knowledge, however, didn’t prepare me for a simple question about Dublin — one which just about any visitor would ask: What’s the oldest building in Dublin?

517886986_8bfddbe5bd_m.jpgThe consensus answer is that Christ Church Cathedral is the oldest building in Dublin. It is already a major tourist attraction, so I discovered no hidden gems in finding this answer. Here’s the tour-guide overview:

This is Dublin’s oldest building, founded in 1038 by King Sitric of Dublin, then rebuilt in stone in 1169 by Strongbow, Earl of Permbroke, and restored in Gothic style in 1871. There is a crypt dating from 1172, and both buildings contain remarkable monuments, sculptures and other objects from over the centuries, including the embalmed heart of the Archbishop of Dublin (1180), punishment stocks, and a tomb oak carving from 1584.

The Cathedral’s board has more historical information for the curious. (The photo here is courtesy of Flickr member jtriefen.)

In the past, I found that the consensus view is disputed by experts (archeologists, architectural historians, and the like) so if I find an interesting dissent, I’ll write about it. I have not yet visited the inside of the Cathedral, but I’m sure that one of our visitors will have it on his/her must-see list. Or my own curiosity will take me there. You know how it works.

2 Comments to “The Oldest Building in Dublin”

  1. Sharon said...
    30 October 2007

    we totally have to go there, but you can go there before we get there

  2. Jaime B said...
    30 October 2007

    I’ve been to CCC before – it’s an excellent place to hide out from a sudden Dublin downpour. My friend and I spent several hours haunting the cathedral as we waited for the rain to lighten up. If I recall correctly, there is a mummified cat and rat that was found in the organ pipes. Excellent.