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Marsh's Library

St Patrick's Close, Dublin, Ireland (South City Centre)
(01) 454 3511
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Ranked #21 of 264 attractions in Dublin
Certificate of Excellence 2013
Type: Libraries
Owner description: One of Dublin's most beautiful tourist attractions. An unspoiled gem right in the heart of the city. Founded in 1701, Marsh's Library was the first... more » Owner description: One of Dublin's most beautiful tourist attractions. An unspoiled gem right in the heart of the city. Founded in 1701, Marsh's Library was the first public library in Ireland. It is a beautiful Queen Anne-style building complete with the original oak bookcases. Visitors often comment on the wonderful smell of the old bookcases and books.The library contains over 25,000 rare and interesting books relating to the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries, covering medicine, law, science, travel, navigation, mathematics, music, and classical literature. There is also some material of a very scurrilous nature. Every year an exhibition of rare and curious items is presented from the holdings of the Library. The current exhibition (2013/4)showcases stunning gold-tooled bookbindings from our holdings in the Benjamin Iveagh Library at Farmleigh. « less
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123 reviews from our community

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NE Italy
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
28 attraction reviews
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 30, 2014

This library was wonderful! The staff are very friendly and knowledgeable. It is small so it won't take much time to get through it. They have a book decorating station and a quill pen station that children will enjoy. My only thought was that they should have a book open in a display case for you to see what the... More

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EP
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
3 attraction reviews
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 16, 2014

For a sense of how I feel about working in a library like this, read my review of the National Library of Ireland. But let me say that NLI and Marsh's Library, while a short walk from one another, are worlds -- and centuries -- apart. Marsh's Library is the oldest public library in Ireland. It was established by Archbishop... More

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Rapid City, South Dakota
Top Contributor
133 reviews 133 reviews
18 attraction reviews
101 helpful votes 101 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 16, 2014 via mobile

If standing in line to see the long room library and the Book of Kells isn't your idea of fun, beat it over to a free standing building immediate adjacent to the south lawn of St Patricks Cathedral. There you will find the oldest public library in Ireland, left the same way patrons experienced it 300 years ago! Don't miss... More

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Seattle
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2014

We would recommend this as a quick stop not to miss. Some great collections to view and being in the environment and realizing how old the books are is kind of mind blowing.

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Chicago, Il
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
6 attraction reviews
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 18, 2013

The oldest library in Ireland, this place is a piece of history, frozen in time. As you exit St. Patrick's turn left and drift across the narrow lane (St. Patrick's Close) and keep your eyes peeled for the archway cut into the wall. Up the steps, through he door, up the stairs and ring the bell. The door opens and... More

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Dublin, Ireland
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
6 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 17, 2013

like stepping back in time and so interesting. Old books and hobbit like atmosphere. Beautifully laid out and interesting guides and information on old books.

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Dublin, Ireland
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
4 attraction reviews
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 12, 2013

this is the oldest library in IRELAND and all books are behind cages, apparently in its day when you went in to read a book you were locked in a cage so as not to steal it?

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East Coast
Top Contributor
57 reviews 57 reviews
10 attraction reviews
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 24, 2013

I doubt this library has changed much since it was founded. That's why it is so interesting. It even smells like old books. The reading cages were fun to see. The exhibit of book bindings were beautiful.

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Denver, Indiana
Top Contributor
67 reviews 67 reviews
38 attraction reviews
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 22, 2013

The library is small but well worth the time and cost. It holds many ancient books. I found the reading cages interesting--a great way to prevent theft of library books and materials! There was a book design area, however we did not do it. The activity, though, for a child would have been fun.

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Dublin, Ireland
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
5 attraction reviews
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 18, 2013 via mobile

Beautifully conserved library - Ireland's oldest public one. Amazing display of intricately decorated book bindings from the Guinness family's private collection until Early Summer 2014. Interesting stories and interactive elements to keep children engaged. Especially loved the create your own book design station.

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