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Merrion Square

Georgian façade of Merrion Square,Dublin

Merrion Square (garden square on the southside of Dublin city centre.


  • History 1
  • Legacy 2
  • Occupancy 3
  • Park 4
  • Notable residents 5
  • See also 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8


The square was laid out after 1762 and was largely complete by the beginning of the 19th century. The demand for such Georgian Fitzwilliam Square.

Aristocrats, bishops and the wealthy sold their northside townhouses and migrated to the new southside developments.

Leinster House in 1911, decorated for the visit of King George V.
The statue of Queen Victoria in the courtyard was removed in 1947. This view shows the original ducal palace at the heart of a spreading complex of buildings.


Merrion Square is considered one of the city's finest surviving squares. Three sides are lined with Georgian redbrick townhouses; the West side abuts the grounds of Leinster House (seat of the Oireachtas), Government Buildings, the Natural History Museum and the National Gallery. The central railed-off garden is now a public park.

The Wellington Testimonial to commemorate the victories of Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, was originally planned to be located in Merrion Square. However it was built in the Phoenix Park after opposition from the square's residents.[1]


Oscar Wilde Statue

Until about the 1950s, the houses in the square were largely residential, but today most of them are used for office accommodation. The Irish Georgian Society have their headquarters on the square.

The poet, novelist, and satirist Sheridan Le Fanu.

Until 1972 the British Embassy was based at No 39; however, following the Bloody Sunday shootings in Northern Ireland, a crowd of over 20,000 people converged on the site in protest and the building was burnt to the ground.[2]

Currently, the Embassies of France and Slovakia are based on the south side of the square.[3]


Merrion Square Park

The earliest plan of the park shows a double line of trees around the perimeter which was later enclosed by railings in the early years of the 19th century. A 'Jardin Anglaise' approach was adopted for the layout of the park with contoured grass areas, informal tree clumps, sunken curved paths and perimeter planting.[4]

Up until the 1960s the park was only open to residents in possession of a private key. Now managed by Dermot Morgan.

The park in the square was called "Archbishop Ryan Park", after Dermot Ryan, the Catholic archbishop who transferred ownership to the city. In 2009, Dermot Ryan was criticised in the Murphy Report; in January 2010, Dublin City Council sought public views on renaming the Park.[6] In September 2010, the City Council voted to rename the park as Merrion Square Park.[7]

Notable residents

Merrion Square was a fashionable address for politicians, lawyers, doctors and writers. Notable residents include;

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ New French Embassy Opens in Merrion Square - The Irish Times, 24-04-2015
  4. ^
  5. ^ ITMA
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^ At 12 Merrion Square, North: The Treble Almanack ... (1832), p. 17.
  9. ^ Dublin Hospital Gazette , 15 June 1858, p 192,

External links

Media related to at Wikimedia Commons

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