Dublin is the Captial City of Ireland and has so much to offer visitors. From its incredible history and culture. To amazing architecture and great places to eat and drink. One place that you must check out in Dublin is Trinity College, a world-renown University and Museum in the heart of Dublin.
The History of Trinity College
The success story and long history of the College began in 1592 when it was created by the royal charter. It is actually Ireland’s oldest living university and one of only seven ancient Universities in Britain and Ireland. Not many people know this but the full name of the College is ‘The College of the Holy and Undivided Trinity of Queen Elizabeth.’
As Trinity College was developing, many British universities were thriving and the college was intended to be of a similar model to those across the water. As Dublin was also developing into a capital city at the time. It was thought that a respectful university would help it reach the level of other European countries. The queen then granted permission for the college to go ahead and was built at College Green. Facing Trinity College you will find the Irish Houses of Parliament which is another historic site in Dublin.
Trinity College was partially established as a means of consolidating the Tudor Monarch’s rule of Ireland. Among the different things and stories told about Trinity College in Dublin is that is was commonly seen as a predominantly Protestant institution. Where professorships, fellowships, and scholarships were originally reserved for Protestants. This rule was then changed in 1873 to further include the Catholic community as well.
Trinity College Campus
The campus of Trinity College is pretty huge and there are specific things to be spotted in addition to all these old buildings that form the college. There is an important library which is considered one of the oldest in the country. There is also the Samuel Beckett Theatre and the Douglas Hyde Gallery located at the campus.
The Samuel Beckett Theatre
As mentioned above this is also an important aspect of the Trinity College Campus. It was named after one of the brilliant playwrights of the 20th century. The theatre was opened in 1992 to help celebrate the 400 years of the colleges beginning. It is part of the college’s drama, film and music department.
During term time it showcases a variety of the work created by students and the different courses. The theatre facilities are also used by prestigious dance and theatre companies in Ireland and around the world. You will see regular events at this theatre by the Dublin Theatre Festival and the Dublin Dance Festival.
Douglas Hyde Gallery
Also found on the historical Trinity College Campus is the contemporary art gallery known as ‘The Douglas Hyde Gallery.’ The gallery first opened in 1978, it is publicly funded and was once Ireland’s only public contemporary art gallery.
The gallery has gained international recognition for bringing unknown artists to the people of Ireland. Along with being a place were Irish artists can show off their work. It offers a variety of different smaller galleries and exhibitions. Really worth checking out on your visit to Trinity College.
Trinity College Library
One of the most famous features of the university is its amazing Library on offer. Which is also the largest Library in Ireland. It has an incredible six million printed volumes for visitors to browse through. As well as a huge collection of journals and manuscripts and more that reflect over 400 years of academic development.
Walking inside the library is in itself is a feeling we won’t be able to describe. But the closest thing we could say is that it feels like walking back in history. With its atmosphere, the statues and all the old books which are surrounding you from every corner. It is pretty incredible.
Due to the library’s historic stance, it is considered a legal deposit library for the United Kingdom and assumes a similar role in Ireland as well. The library has also entitled a copy of every single book published in Great Britain and Ireland.
Which means that over 100,000 new items are added to the library every single year. Just amazing if you’re a book geek you have to make sure you visit this incredible library.
The Book of Kells
One of the most popular manuscripts found at the Trinity College Library is the Book of Kells. A trip to Dublin would not be complete without checking out this historic and famous book.
The book itself consists of the four gospels of the Christian scriptures that are written in Latin. The Book of Kells is the oldest book in the world. Dating back to the year 800 but for centuries scholars have been unable to say where.
It has been said that the name of the book comes from a Monastery of Kells that is located in County Meath, Ireland. It is believed that it was brought to Kells after a Viking raid on the island of Iona in Scotland back in 806.
The book stayed at kells until 1654 before it was then sent to Dublin for safekeeping. The bishop of Meath gave the book of Kells manuscript to Trinity College in 1661 and has stayed there ever since. Apart from when it was loaned out to other libraries and museums but it was always brought back to Trinity College.
It wasn’t until around the 19th century when the book began to obtain worldwide recognition. It is now one of the most visited tourist attractions in Dublin, with people coming far and wide to get a glimpse of the manuscript. Inside the library where the book is housed is an unforgettable experience as if you’ve walked into a film set its that cool.
It is important to mention some of the important ranks that this college received when it took part in different polls. In 2010, Forbes placed Trinity College as one of the 15 most beautiful college campuses to be found around the world.
Voted number one by Pitchbook in Europe for Graduate Entrepreneurship, an impressive three years in a row. (2016, 2017, 2018) Trinity College also made it in the top 50 most innovative European Universities by Reuters.
One of the best things is that you can take part in guided tours of the college from its facilities, seeing its amazing architecture and visiting the famous library.
While on this tour you will learn all about the impressive history surrounding Trinity College. As well as its traditions, building uses and what it’s like today all told by students of the college. Definitely, a must-do when you’re in Dublin, a unique experience.
Have you ever been to Trinity College in Dublin? We would love to hear any experiences you have in the comments below.
Don’t forget to check out other places and attractions in Dublin worth checking out: The Famous Temple Bar | Dublinia Viking Museum | The Famous Guinness Storehouse | Molly Malone Statue | Phoenix Park | O’Connell Street | Merrion Square