Blacker: Brief Sketches Of The Parishes Of Booterstown And Donnybrook In The County Of Dublin

Pdf Blacker, Rev. Beaver H, Brief Sketches Of The Parishes Of Booterstown And Donnybrook In The County Of Dublin, Dublin: George Herbert, 1860
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Brief Sketches Of The Parshes Of Booterstown And Donnybrook In The County Of Dublin by Rev. Beaver H. Blacker is a history of two wealthy Church of Ireland parishes in south Dublin.

In the 12th century the Normans invaded Ireland. The invasion began when Richard De Clare, 2nd Earl of Pembroke was invited to Ireland to fight on the side of King of Leinster Dermot McMurrough. De Clare or 'Strongbow' as he is better known was soon followed by the King of England, Henry II himself who became Lord of Ireland. The Earl of Pembroke and his successors would hold on to land in Dublin until the 20th century.

In the 16th century Henry VIII broke with Rome establishing the Anglican Church which in Ireland was called the Church of Ireland. The majority of the Gaelic Irish and 'Old English' remained Roman Catholics and centuries of war, rebellion and Protestant plantations followed. The Earls of Pembroke retained their lands by remaining loyal to the British throne and the Church Of Ireland.

In the early 19th century the title of Earl of Pembroke was in the hands of the powerful and wealthy Herbert family, the tenth to do so, many of whom served as MPs in the British House Of Commons. The parishes of Booterstown anglicised from Baile an Bhóthair meaning 'town of the road' and Donnybrook or Domhnach Broc or 'Church of St. Broc' situated in south Dublin were in what was called the Pembroke Township formed in 1863.

Pembroke Township included Ballsbridge, Donnybrook, Sandymount, Irishtown and Ringsend. The Local Government (Dublin) Act 1930 dissolved Pembroke Urban District and added the area to the City of Dublin.

Donnybrook was known for Donnybrook Fair, an open market, dating from the reign of King John but due to drunkeness and violent behavior it was banned in 1855. The word donnybrook became associated with violent melées. A Celtic Church was dedicated to St. Broc giving the area its name before St. Mary's Church was constructed in the 12th century. The church was rebuilt in 1727 and again in 1830 due to the size of the congregations.

Booterstown lies on an ancient route connecting Bray with the lands of the King of Tara in Meath. The area was home to the Church of St. Philip and St. James with the site donated by George Herbert, 11th Earl of Pembroke and was built between 1821-24. Sidney Herbert, 1st Baron Herbert of Lea made improvements and Rev. Beaver Blacker added an extension in 1868-69.

Throughout much of the 19th century the area was a very wealthy enclave of Protestantism and Unionism in south Dublin with influential families living in the fine houses and neighbourhoods. Following Irish independence the public park known as Herbert Park was created. The studios of RTE, the Irish state broadcaster opened in Donnybrook in the 1960s. The area continues to have many of Ireland's most exclusive addresses.

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