Our last day in Ireland was May 19th. Time seemed to be flying by and I didn’t want to leave Dublin, but at the same time I couldn’t wait to see what else was out there. But before leaving will still had a few final stops to make. First we went to Christ’s Church Cathedral, which was founded in 1030 and is still in use today. We got to view the interior of the church and then we headed downstairs to the crypt to see old artifacts and more. The crypt of Christ’s Church Cathedral is the oldest structure in Dublin, and also one of the largest medieval crypts in Britain. There were costumes from The Tudors, which was filmed in Christ’s Church Cathedral and other areas of Ireland.
One strange thing that we saw in the crypt was the cat and rat exhibit. The cat and rat were said to be chasing each other when they both got stuck in an organ pipe of Christ’s Church Cathedral in the 1850s. When they were found, they were mummified and put on display in the Crypt. James Joyce, the author we learned about on the pub crawl, referred to the cat and rat in his book Finnegan’s Wake where he describes a character as being “…As stuck as that cat to that mouse in that tube of the Christchurch organ…”
Next, we headed over to Trinity College Dublin where we learned a lot about the history of the school and the buildings.
After our tour was over we got to view the Book of Kells, which is a hand-written and decorated copy of the four gospels. It was written by monks, probably in the early 9th century. It is a part of The Old Library of the Trinity College Library Dublin. While in The Old Library, we also go to see many other old manuscripts that were elaborately decorated and created by hand. The amount of detail and work that goes into each page amazes me. It takes dedication and discipline to be able to create something that intricate. Unfortunately they do not allow pictures inside, but I got a picture of a small excerpt from The Plowshare Journal that can give you an idea of what one page would have looked like.
The Book of Kells ended our travels in Ireland, but we still had much more ahead of us. We grabbed a delicious shake from The Milkshake Bar and headed to the airport for our flight to Scotland.
I met some of the nicest people in Ireland and it was sad to leave, but our trip continued to get better and better as we traveled through the British Isles. Check back on Monday for our next stop: Scotland.