Every royal visiting Dublin, Ireland, officially includes a visit to the Book of Kells at Trinity College in his/her program. The book is the greatest cultural treasure of Ireland and is on display in the Long Room of one of the most amazing looking libraries in the world.

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The library

Trinity College’s library was built between 1712 and 1732. Until 1860 the ceiling was actually flat, but then got the present barrel-vaulted ceiling to house the present upper gallery of bookcases. The magnificent Long Room is nearly 65 metres long and houses 200,000 of the oldest books of the library in huge oak bookcases that reach the ceiling.

The Long Room is lined with marble busts of the greatest philosophers and writers of the western world, as well as men connected with Trinity College. Among them are King George III, his son Ernest Augustus, the Duke of Cumberland and a number of nobles. Below the gallery the benefactorers of the 17th and 18th centuries are being mentioned in gold lettering, including King Charles II.

Also on display in the library is a copy of the 1916 Proclamation of the Irish Republic and an oak harp from the 15th century, an important symbol of Ireland.

The Book of Kells

The Book of Kells is believed to have been created around 800 AD in a Columban monastery in Ireland, Scotland or England. It is a gorgeous illuminated manuscript Gospel book in Latin and contains the four Gospels of the New Testament with other texts and tables. At any time one of the four volumes of the Book of Kells is on public display. Regularly the volumes and pages shown are changed.

Visitor’s information

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