May 31, 2009

The National Museum of Ireland

Posted in Uncategorized at 1:52 pm by classicalmusic

If you are visiting Ireland, a great stop where you can spend the whole day and learn about Irish history is the National Museum of Ireland. The Museum boasts a marvelous collection of exhibits and artifacts that teach about Irish history from pre-historic times all the way up to the present day. Actually, the National Museum of Ireland is not just one stop, it is four. In four separate locations — three of them very close to one another, the museum’s collections are on display and one combined price ticket will get you into all of them. The different locations are divided by the contents of the collections. For example, in Dublin, on Kildare Street is the museum’s archeology wing. Ancient irish artifacts are on display, some of them thousands of years old. Through a careful study of these artifacts, archeologists have pieced together the story of life in Ancient Ireland. It is that story that continues to fascinate visitors. Within a few blocks is the Museum’s “Decorative Arts and History” collection. This impressive collection is hosted in a former military barracks. The collection includes examples of silver, ceramics, glassware, weaponry, furniture, folk-life, clothing, jewelry, coins and medals. Each display tells a story so that visitors not only see these objects but get a real sense of how they were used. Probably the most interesting current exhibit is “Soldiers and Chiefs: The Irish at War at Home and Abroad from 1550.” This exhibit catalogs Irish military history from its earliest times. Examples of the real weapons used over the years are fascinating. Other branches of the Museum include Country Life wing which pays homage to rural Ireland and the Museum of National History (also in Dublin). The Museum of National History is closed temporarily as much needed renovations are performed. It is expected to reopen with the year, so be sure to call ahead when planning your trip. If you visit all four branches, you will need more than a single day. If you just have a day and need to pick one, I recommend you choose the “Decorative Arts and History” facility. It has by far the largest and most varied collection. It is especially useful of your priority is to learn about Irish history in an entertaining way that you will not forget. Then if you have time, pop down the street for the Archeological wing. This visit can really complete your Irish vacation.


1 Comment »

  1. artifiedlady said,

    I couldn’t agree more! I currently have the honor of working here for the summer and it is just amazing! Glad you loved the museum so much and we can’t wait to have you back!

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