Old Church, Co. Galway?

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Where: 1-5 Lombard St, Galway, Ireland

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When: Unknown

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An iconic if pooly captioned(?) image from the Lawrence Collection today. Galway is famous for many things and the window in the foreground is one of those, perhaps even more than the beautiful church in the background?

And so today's discussion reflected the two main visible subjects: "Lynch's Window" to the foreground, and the Church of St Nicholas to the rear. The latter has captured our attention before - with today's discussion focusing on how the lack of a clock in the tower helps date the image to before 1898. The former, Lynch's Window, we hadn't previously discussed (despite practically gazing through it a year or so ago :) ). While the inscription below the window reflects a local legend (of a 15th century magistrate who prioritised loyalty to law and city over loyalty to family - and hung his own son), it could well be a folly of it's day. The suggestion being that the window and structure surrounding it were built of otherwise unrelated architectural fragments in the early 19th century. Whether the story or the structure are 15th century truths or 19th century follies, we're absolutely delighted that both remain part of the fabric of such a vibrant and historic city.....


Photographer: Robert French

Collection: Lawrence Photograph Collection

Date: Catalogue range c.1865-1914. Before c.1898 (clock tower)

NLI Ref: L_CAB_00902

You can also view this image, and many thousands of others, on the NLI’s catalogue at catalogue.nli.ie

Info:

Owner: National Library of Ireland on The Commons
Source: Flickr Commons
Views: 9738
robertfrench williamlawrence lawrencecollection lawrencephotographicstudio thelawrencephotographcollection glassnegative nationallibraryofireland galway countygalway church stnicholaschurch bowlinggreen stnicholascollegiatechurch collegiatechurchofstnicholas lombardstreet ruin window mementomori spire lynch hanged judge magistrate jameslynch walterlynch lynchswindow lynchsmemorialwindow legend folly

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    O Mac

    • 13/Mar/2017 09:02:43

    Streetveiw

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    mcginley2012

    • 13/Mar/2017 09:03:58

    The Collegiate Church of St. Nicholas, Galway.

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    O Mac

    • 13/Mar/2017 09:15:20

    Robert French would have taken the photograph from the two story house on the right. The window frame on the Lynch building can be seen in bottom right www.flickr.com/photos/nlireland/22844068380/in/photolist-...

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    DannyM8

    • 13/Mar/2017 09:28:55

    This is one of Galway’s great stories. It is said that in 1493, the mayor and magistrate of Galway James Lynch FitzStephen, hanged his own son from the window of his home. Lynch's son confessed to have murdered a man, a Spanish merchant sailor in the care of the family who had romanced his girlfriend. When no one could be found to carry out the execution, Judge Lynch hanged (or lynched as the practice became known around the world after this event) his son himself, ensuring that justice prevailed, before retiring into seclusion. The memorial is now embedded in stone above a Gothic doorway on Market Street near the graveyard at St. Nicholas’s Church. www.activeme.ie/guides/attractions-2/lynchs-memorial-wind...

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 13/Mar/2017 09:55:31

    Via [https://www.flickr.com/photos/chethams_library/] with interesting comments and legible inscriptions at large size - [https://www.flickr.com/photos/chethams_library/9041025408/]

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    Niall McAuley

    • 13/Mar/2017 09:58:09

    Comparing to [https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]]'s prompt streetview, I can see that the tower has been reroofed (in copper?), and some roof details are different.

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    Niall McAuley

    • 13/Mar/2017 10:25:33

    In particular, there is no clock! No castellations, either. Compare to this one:St. Nicholas' Church, Galway, 1890(?)

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 13/Mar/2017 10:26:01

    Those stones are full of grafitti (see megazoom) - can anyone find a scribbled date ?

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    Niall McAuley

    • 13/Mar/2017 10:37:58

    The clock is from 1898, so we are earlier than that.

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    Niall McAuley

    • 13/Mar/2017 10:41:37

    The DIA has an entry for "Replacement of eaves on tower with parapet", the castellations, presumably, but no date, just a cryptic reference to Typescript biography of Richard Langrishe by Hugh R. Langrishe (2007), 24.

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    Niall McAuley

    • 13/Mar/2017 10:46:40

    Richard Langrishe lived until 1922, no help unless something more definite turns up...

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    Niall McAuley

    • 13/Mar/2017 10:57:34

    The tower here matches this image from the Chetham Library Galway album:Galway Album 94

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    Niall McAuley

    • 13/Mar/2017 10:58:33

    The dateable shots in that album are from 1873 ish.

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    Niall McAuley

    • 13/Mar/2017 11:52:47

    An unsourced image of the tower of the same vintage from the Market side. Looks like a French/Lawrence image to me.

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 13/Mar/2017 12:06:02

    Here is a long-winded version of the story from 1832 (!) - trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/233685438?searchTerm=g... (Originally written by en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hermann,_F%C3%BCrst_von_P%C3%BCckle... who also has the distinction of having neapolitan ice cream named after him ! )

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    Niall McAuley

    • 13/Mar/2017 12:16:25

    This stereo pair shows this tower version in the background.

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    dearbhaile2

    • 13/Mar/2017 12:41:35

    Not so different now www.google.ie/maps/@53.2730658,-9.0539729,3a,75y,136.38h,...

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    O Mac

    • 13/Mar/2017 13:26:30

    The tower only ever had three clock faces there being none on the side that faced the long gone County gaol. I don't know if the expression originated from here or not but it is said that the town's people wouldn't give the prisoners the time of day.

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    Bernard Healy

    • 13/Mar/2017 15:53:23

    This 'Collegiate Church' was the site of an ecclesiastical rarity. Most cities have a Cathedral - a church from which a Bishop governs the church affairs of the surrounding area or diocese. Some people say that part of the definition of a city is that it should have a Cathedral. However, Irish Dioceses arose before the growth of cities like Galway and medieval Galway was part of the Archdiocese of Tuam. In 1484, the Archbishop of Tuam essentially gave Galway and the surrounding area a large degree of independence in church affairs by establishing St Nicholas as a 'Collegiate Church'. The Mayor and Corporation had the right to elect a priest as the 'Warden of Galway' (that sounds like something out of Lord of the Rings) and 8 other priests as 'Vicars Choral' to assist him in governing church affairs in Galway. These positions came up for election every year, so this is a very different situation to a Bishop who was expected to stay in office for life. The Warden of Galway could dress like a bishop (shall we pull out that word 'Pontificalia' again?) and essentially had the rights and responsibilities of a Bishop within the city of Galway and those surrounding parishes which were part of the Wardenship. However, being an ordinary priest, the Warden of Galway couldn't perform ordinations, and was subject to a certain degree of (vaguely defined) oversight from the Archbishop of Tuam. When the reformation happened, there were both Catholic and Anglican wardens of Galway. St Nicholas Collegiate church was held by the Anglicans and is a Church of Ireland church to this day. The Anglican Wardenship fizzled out in the early 1800s, whilst the cleric looking after Catholic affairs in Galway retained the title of 'Warden of Galway' until 1831. The choice of the Catholic Warden of Galway was made difficult by the fact that the Mayor and Corporation were Protestant, so an underground Catholic corporation was formed to elect the warden, whilst the Tribes of Galway attempted too make themselves the ones who picked the Catholic Warden. In 1831, the Catholic Diocese of Galway was established and Galway got its first bishop. This regularised the anomalous situation of Galway and the surrounding area not having its own bishop. Until this point there were frequent disputes of jurisdiction between the Catholic Warden of Galway and the Catholic Archbishop of Tuam. The relatively late establishment of Galway as a diocese meant that Galway didn't have its own Cathedral (Anglican or Catholic) until the current Catholic Cathedral was finished in 1965.

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    Inverarra

    • 13/Mar/2017 17:25:04

    Thank you for this wonderful photo.

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 13/Mar/2017 21:18:38

    Medieval Galway realtime 3D simulation - youtu.be/-nDy1raoJ-o . I cannot spot The Window ...

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    silverio10

    • 13/Mar/2017 22:28:16

    Buena serie de fotos antiguas .

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 14/Mar/2017 00:49:10

    Thanks all - The story of Lynch's Window is indeed a fascinating one :) Although perhaps at least largely embellished. And probably outright invented :) While the window may have been moved at some-point from Lynch's Castle (visited recently - below), and though the story may predate "our" window, the plaque was probably added as a folly or attraction. Maybe reflecting a "city over family" ethos that a city father liked the sound of. Perhaps after getting all-classical and reading about Lucius, father of Brutus. Whatever the source of the story, the structure surrounding the window was seemingly built from medieval architectural fragments. Likely around the date of the 19th century plaque. Whether both story and window are folly or truth, this Mary doesn't really mind :) It's just fantasic to see both still form part of the fabric of such a fantastic city!! www.flickr.com/photos/nlireland/31696608940/