Costello Chapel

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  • People and Places in Leitrim

Built in Loving Memory

The Costello Chapel on Bridge street is a wonderful example of one man's love for his wife. Edward Costello, a local merchant, built the chapel in memory of his dead wife, Mary Josephine, in 1879. It is the smallest chapel in Ireland, and supposedly the second-smallest in the world.

Two years after Mary died, Edward Costello commissioned the chapel to be built in the heart of Carrick-on-Shannon. Costello was widely known as a man of great kindness and charity. When the chapel was completed, people from far and wide attended the dedication ceremony.

On 22 April 1879, Mary's remains were interred, in a beautifully decorated coffin, in the ground near the entrance of the chapel. The coffin was covered with a lid of thick, decorated glass. When Edward Costello died many years later, he was buried on the other side of the entrance in the same way.

Chapel Design

The Costello Chapel is 16 feet long, 12 feet wide and covers an area of 192 square feet. The exterior is made from cut stone, surmounted by two celtic crosses.

There is one entrance to the chapel. Engraved on the arch above it is the Costello coat of arms, with the motto 'Seek not thyself outside thyself'. The interior of the building is lined with Bath Stone. There is a beautifully designed stained glass window over the richly decorated marble altar.