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Dublin's Mansion House

Dublin's Mansion House - A History Of The Building.

The Mansion House Dawson Street Dublin 2
Welcome to the Mansion House — the official
residence of Dublin's first citizen, the Lord Mayor,
and one of our city's finest and most loved buildings.
Elegantly crafted and beautifully decorated, it tells
a powerful story of history and tradition, of respect
and honour, of courage and affection.
A Masterpiece In The Making
The Mansion House has been at the heart of
city government since 1715. It was originally 
built as a townhouse in iZo5 for the developer
in the of Dawson Street and Nassau Street,
 Joshua Dawson,
but was seldom lived in bythis esteemed gentleman.
Ten years later and still partly unfinished, it was sold to
Dublin Corporation for 3,5oo (euro4,444), in addition
to an annual rent of 4o shillings and an agreement to
provide a loaf of double refined sugar, weighing six
pounds at Christmas. Dublin preceded London by
some i5 years in providing an official house for its mayor.

lLord Mayors Coach

From The Outside In
Boasting many fine features and rooms that
have rightly allowed it to be compared with
other renowned Dublin attractions such as
Trinity College and the National Art Gallery
And City Hall. The Mantion House started it's life
faced with brick but was later plastered and
has the city coat of arms added to the
pediment. The metal portico at the frone
entrance was erected in advance Queen
Victoria's visit in 1900 to ensure the queen
was sufficiently protected from the elements.
Similarly The Round Room beside the house
had being built in 1823 for a visit by King
George 1V . The round room has since
become better known as The Venue for
the first Dail which here in January 1919.

Lord Mayors Mace
Lord Mayor's Mace

The Oak Room
Moving inside the house itself, oil portraits
of former Lord Mayors adorn the walls, although
it is the stained glass window located on the
main staircase that captures immediate attention.
Made in 1900 by the Dublin firm of Joshua Clarke
and Sons, it features the official Lord. Mayor's
coat-of-arms, surrounded in turn by
the coats-of-arms of the four provinces
of Ireland.
Built as part of the purchase agreement with
Joshua Dawson, the Oak Room as its name suggests,
is panelled entirely of oak, with most of the
original panelling still in place.
Designed almost 3oo years ago for civic receptions,
it is still used for this purpose today.
The room contains a number of fine portraits
including that of Charles Stewart Parnell,
founder of the Home Rule Party. Also on show
here are the individual coats-of-arms of Dublin's
Lord Mayors,each of whom adds his or her own at the
end of their term of office.
 

Mansion House Dublin
Oak Room Mansion House Dublin

The Dining Room
The dining room, although used for formal
lunches and small receptions is also used
for occasional meetings. It was originally two
rooms but was converted into two rooms in
1760. The carpet in this room is supurb
early 20th century example of the Le Tene
style based on early Celtic motifs which
can be found on the Tara Brooch. It was
made for The Mantion House Dun Emer
Guild Company run by the two sisters
of the poet W.B. Yeats.
 
The room also has an intresting black
marble chimney piece in Egyptian style
which dates back to 1830. The brass fender
and black marble mantel clock are
victorian, as are the golden oak framed
brass circular dining gong and beater.
The pier mirror over the mantelpiece
is late Georgian and is a pair to the
mirror in the entrance hall.
Finally the mahogany extending
dining table is also Victorian while
the accompanying chairs and carvers
are Edwardian

mansion-house-dning-room.jpg
Mansion house dining room

Role Of The Lord Mayor - Mansion House
The office of The Lord Mayor of Dublin dates
 back to 1229 when Richard Muton became
the first  Mayor. The first ''Lord Mayor'' was
Danial Bellingham who was elected in 1665
and  the City's first modern Lord Mayor was
The Liberator Danial O'Connell who was elected
in 1841.
 
Elected each year by Dublin City Council from
it's own members, the Lord Mayor presides at
council meetings and signs it's record of
proceedings. While the term itself lasts for
one year , Alfie Byrne was Lord Mayor of Dublin
for nine consecutive years from 1930-1939
and again in 1954-55

Lord Mayors Sword
Lord Mayor's Sword

City Seal Of Dublin
Since the arly 13 century Dublin has had
a City Seal, a stamp placed on civic documents
to make them official. The ancient city seal
is a disc shaped stamp with a motif on each
side. This was stamped on sealing wax which
was in turn attached to documents.
The bronze moulds of the 13th century Dublin
seal were displayed in City Hall. The two discs
[seal and counter seal] measure 3 inches in diameter
and have 4 pierced tags at the sides into which pins
were placed to keep the discs together so that
they fitted accurately over each other duringsealing.
 
 
At least 102 sealed royal charters held by Dunlin
City Council are known to have been granted
by verious kings and queens between 1172 and 1727.
The charters were isued as a means of securing
loyalty from the citizens by conveying various rights
and privileges on them.These charters form the basis of
municipal legislation and government in Ireland.

City Sword And Mace

The Dublin City Sword and Mace
are magnificent examples of metalwork and
are used today in civic ceremonies such as
the conferring of the Honorary Freedom of Dublin.
, City Sword. The medieval. City Sword was
originally the personal weapon of Henry 1v of
England and was presented to Dublin by the
King in 1409.

The sword comprises an iron
blade and a silver-gilt handle
inscribed with Henry's floral device, the
forget-me-not. The scabbard is from the i7th
century and is made of wood covered in red
velvet, with silver-gilt mounts.

Great Mace. The Great Mace was made in 1665
for th.e city's first Lord Mayor, Sir Daniel
Bellingham, and is a fine illustration of
restoration craftsmanship. Just over five feet
long, it is in silver-gilt over a wooden staff.
The shaft is ornamental with a chased floral design.
The base is ii inches long by 17 inches round and
is chased and fluted on top. Underneath there
are four ornamental panels displaying Rose and
Thistle on one stem for Great Britain (twice),
the Fleur de Lis for France, and the Harp for Ireland.
The head of the Mace, 19 inches in height,, is
supported on the shalt by four ornamenial
brackets And armless figures, a circlet of crosses
and fleur de lis adorn the top

Chains Of Office - Dublin Lord Mayor
The Lord Mayor has a choice of two chains
to wear at offical functions. The Great Chain
and The Clancy Chain.
Great Chain. The Great Chain was made in
1698 and is made up of gold links shaped
into roses, knots and other symbols.
A large  gold medal stamped with the bust
of King William III [1680-1702] hangs from
the front of the chain. The medal is of such
fine workmanship that there are copies of in
Holland and The Hague, and in the U.K in
London and Oxford.
 
Clancy Chain - The Clancy Chain was made in
1914, it is named after Alderman John Clancy
o whome it was presented by a group of Dubliners.
The chain is also made of gold and made in the
Celtic tradition with motifs from The Book Of Kells
The Tara Brooch and The Irish Harp.
It also supports an inscribed meddalion bearing
the city's Coat Of Arms in Blue and Red enamel.
 
Chain Of The Lady Mayoress-A modern gold chain
and  medallion was presented in 1961 to Dublin
Corportation by a Dublin jeweller for use by The Lady
Mayoress. It is worn by her at official functions when
in the company of The Lord Mayor.


Coat of-Arms

Dublin's coat-of-arms is the identifying
emblem of the City of Dublin and has been
in use in one form or another for at least
400 years. The full coat-of-arms shows
three burning castles on a shield, flanked
by two female figures.One holds a scales
depicting Justice (without the usual blindfold)
— the other, a sword representing Law.
Each holds an olive branch.Below the shield
on a scroll is the motto of the city,
Obedienta Civium Urbis Felicitas, which
translates as "the obedience of the citizens
produces a happy city". The origin of the
coat-of-arms is unknown and the meaning on
it obscure - which provides plenty of
opportunity for both imaginative and informed
speculation. One theory is that it symbolises
the three castles which were situated outside
the city and used as garrison outposts or watch
towers. Another is that it is Dublin Castle
repeated three times because of the mystical
connections of the number three, while a third
speculates that they are not castles at all,
but the three gates of the old Viking city.

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