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Lives Less Ordinary: Dublin's Fitzwilliam Square, 1798-1922

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Lives Less Ordinary: Dublin's Fitzwilliam Square, 1798-1922

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A detailed and fascinating portrait of Georgian Dublin.


Fitzwilliam Square on the south side of Dublin provides the setting and a true-life cast of characters for Lives Less Ordinary, which examines how the people of this Georgian square impacted on the history of Dublin and the wider world.These disparate characters from a small residential enclave permeated every walk of Irish life (political, legal and cultural) in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. By using the residents' own correspondence and memoirs, as well as contemporary accounts in chronicles and journals, this unique history is told through their perspectives.

So we follow the legal inhabitants of Fitzwilliam Square into the nineteenth century courtrooms of the state trials; we witness its soldier sons on a succession of battlefields through their own correspondence and reminiscences; we examine the remarkable artistic and literary output of people from the square; we hear intriguing anecdotes about the politicians, doctors and academics who lived there, including tales about duelling, ghost stories and political and personal scandals. On their own, the sketches that make up this book would be historical footnotes, but woven together they provide a detailed and fascinating overview of Irish life at a particular place and time. The stories are varied and wide-ranging, but they are anchored by the fact that they only involve those inhabitants of the sixty-nine houses of Fitzwilliam Square.

'So that's our setting. Sixty-nine houses, four corners of Georgian Dublin but just one address. Scope enough for some remarkable tales and extraordinary lives. Homes that displayed at times salubrious, at times shabby, grandeur provide a backdrop for drawing room intrigue, revelry and temperance, devilry and romance; the abandon of artistic expression and the restraint of social convention; residents loyal and seditious, doctors medical and religious and gentlemen who attained the highest offices in legal, political and military circles. We'll endeavour to follow them all, so follow me dear reader, into Fitzwilliam Square.'

From Lives Less Ordinary

About the Author

Andrew Hughes is a graduate of Trinity College Dublin with a BA in History and English, and of University College Dublin with a Higher Diploma in Archival Studies. He has been commissioned to research and compose the history of Georgian houses in Dublin since 2006.

Additional Information

Additional Information

Author Hughes, Andrew
Editor No
Print Format Paperback
ISBN-10 190578595X
ISBN-13 978-1905785957
Illustrations No
Date of Publication April 2011
Number of Pages 286

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