Lord Charlemont’s Mysterious Tunnels at Marino

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Heritage Week, now in progress, opens various little-known attractions to the public. These include a series of mysterious tunnels built by Francis Caulfeild, 1st Earl of Charlemont (1728-1799) underneath the lands in the vicinity of the Casino at Marino in Dublin. The Marino tunnels, used by the IRA for firing practice during the War of Independence, may be visited at set times (http://casinomarino.ie).

Marino House is gone and most of the parklands built over, but the exquisite neoclassical Casino and the secret tunnels remain. The Irish Times of 19 August 2016 posited a suggestion as to why Lord Charlemont had the tunnels constructed: ‘His personal physician, Dr Charles Lucas, had also written a treatise on the health-giving benefits of water, so he was probably following instructions when he built the tunnels’.

It is true that Lucas was a great believer in the medical benefits of water and bathing and wrote a three-part treatise entitled An Essay on Waters (London 1756). However, an emphasis on subterranean bathing is not evident in Lucas’s voluminous publications. Perhaps the classically-influenced Charlemont, who had visited Rome in his youth, was endeavouring to replicate the famous underground of that city, where baths, temples and other built-over constructs have survived.

Charlemont was also a prominent member of the Society of Dilettanti, whose founder, Sir Francis Dashwood, of Hellfire Club notoriety, had a series of underground caves excavated between 1748 and 1752 near High Wycombe in England (http://goo.gl/szE1AV). It is not suggested that the more sober Charlemont indulged in the subterranean devil worship and orgies with which Dashwood’s name is associated. Yet the two men clearly shared a penchant for expensive tunnel construction, the reasons for which which are not entirely clear.

This post was written by Sean Murphy who would be delighted to hear from anyone who may have ideas about the possible reasons that Charlemont had the tunnels constructed. His email address is sjbmurphy (at) eircom.net or just add a comment below.

Postgrad Bursary Winner Profiles: Alvin Chen

 

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Alvin Chen is a D.Phil candidate in History at Christ Church, University of Oxford. He is interested in Eighteenth-Century European intellectual history, Enlightenment intellectual history and historiography. He will be speaking about his research in this area at the ECIS Annual Conference on 10-11 June 2016

Favourite archive:
Bodleian Library, British Library, and the National Library of Scotland

Favourite museum, gallery or heritage site:
Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, and National Palace Museum in Taipei

Most exciting place or time in the eighteenth-century:
I would say Strand, London, in the 1760s.

Best online resource:
ECCO and EEBO

Best book of 18th century interest:
Blair Worden’s Roundhead Reputation and J.G.A. Pocock’s Barbarism and Religion, especially volumes III, IV, and V

What eighteenth century figure would you most like to have a drink with?
I haven’t really thought about this. William Strahan might be a good drinking partner. It would be interesting to learn more details about eighteenth-century publishing industry.

What will you be talking about at the ECIS Annual Conference 2016?
My D.Phil thesis is on George Berkeley’s criticism of free-thinkers’ idea of an ‘enlightened age’. At the moment I am looking at Berkeley’s responses to free-thinkers’ mathematisation of natural philosophy, and their visions of human progress in terms of moral philosophy and political economy. My paper at the Annual Conference will be about Berkeley’s reflection on the problem of social stability, and the way in which this may enrich the present discussion of the theme by historians of Enlightenment political thought.

CFP: The Irish and the London Stage

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Proposals for papers are now being invited for a conference entitled ‘The Irish and the London Stage: Identity, Culture, and Politics, 1680-1830’ which will take place in the Long Room Hub, Trinity College Dublin on 17-18 February 2017.

The conference will consider the varied Irish contribution to the development of London’s theatrical world over the course of the eighteenth century.  This event is generously supported by the Marie-Curie programme.

Please visit the conference website for further information.

Postgrad Bursary Winner Profiles: Ciaran McDonough

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Ciaran McDonough is a doctoral research scholar at NUI Galway. Her research looks at nineteenth-century Irish antiquarianism and she will be speaking about her work at the ECIS Annual Conference on 10-11 June 2016. You can find out more about Ciaran’s research by visiting her academia.edu page or by following her on twitter.

Favourite archive:
The Royal Irish Academy

Favourite museum, gallery or heritage site:
National Museum of Ireland – Archaeology

Most exciting place or time in the eighteenth-century:
Dublin in the 1780s and 1790s – such a hub of activity!

Best online resource:
Archive.org

Best book of 18th century interest:
Clare O’Halloran, Golden Ages and Barbarous Nations – a brilliant guide to eighteenth-century antiquarianism.

What eighteenth century figure would you most like to have a drink with?
Charles Vallancey. Having spent the past few years researching this fascinating character (and laughing at his ideas), I would like to see the man behind the mad ideas!

What will you be talking about at the ECIS Annual Conference 2016?
I work on nineteenth-century antiquarianism and will be discussing some of the problems I have faced in working on a definition of an ‘antiquarian’. My paper at the conference will focus on what the term meant in the eighteenth-century and what antiquarian research consisted of in this time period. I will also make reference to the discrepancies in usage between the terms ‘antiquarian’ and ‘scholar’. Did the use of these terms reflect the type of work carried out? When Charles O’Conor referred to Dubhaltach Mac Fhirbhisigh as an ‘antiquary’, did he mean that Mac Fhirbhisigh carried out different work than himself? O’Conor has subsequently been referred to as a ‘scholar’ – is this another difference? My paper will attempt to answer these questions.

Call For Papers: Jonathan Swift 350

A conference to mark the 350th anniversary of the birth of Jonathan Swift will be held from 7-9 June 2017 in Trinity College Dublin.

Proposals for 20-minute papers on any aspect of Jonathan Swift’s life and work are invited, with papers on Swift and Ireland particularly welcome. Suggestions for round tables (including names of participants) will also be considered. Please send titles and abstracts (200 words) to the conference organizers at:

Registration for 2016 ECIS Annual Conference Now Open!

The 2016 Eighteenth-Century Ireland Society  / An Cumann Éire San Ochtú Céad Déag Annual Conference will be held in National University of Ireland Galway on 10 – 11 June 2016. 

Plenaries will be delivered by Prof. Michael Brown (Aberdeen), Prof. Norma Clark (Kingston), and Dr Meidhbhín Ní Úrdail (UCD).

Registration is now open. Go to http://www.ecis.ie/annual-conference/ for further details.

Conference: Women’s Networks in Eighteenth-Century London and Dublin

The Centre for Eighteenth Century Studies, Queen’s University Belfast is hosting a conference entitled ‘Women’s Networks in Eighteenth-Century London and Dublin’ which will take place at the Music Building, University Square, Old McMordie Hall on Friday 27 May 2016.

Please follow this link to download the full programme.

Conference: Women and Gender in Early Modern Britain and Ireland

Image from Splendor Solis, BL

A one-day conference, ‘Women and Gender in Early Modern Britain and Ireland’, will be held in honour of Anne Laurence on 4 June 2016 at the Institute of Historical Research, London.

Speakers will include: Prof. James Daybell, Dr Amy Erickson, Dr Gemma Allen, Prof. Mary O’Dowd, Dr Frances Nolan, Dr Rosalind Carr, Prof. Jane Humphries, Dr Judith Spicksley and Dr Amanda Capern.

Further details are available at http://www.open.ac.uk/blogs/history/

Events: Irish Protestant Playwrights Conference

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The Irish Protestant Playwrights Conference, will be held at the Moore Institute, NUI Galway on 1-3 June 2016.

The conference will feature papers on a number of dramatists from the long eighteenth-century, including George Farquhar, Charles Macklin, Arthur Murphy, Elizabeth Griffith, Oliver Goldsmith, various Sheridans (to be precise, Thomas, Jr., Frances, and Richard Brinsley), and Maria Edgeworth.

Keynote speakers will include Professor Seán Kennedy (St Mary’s University, Halifax) and Dr Emilie Pine (UCD).

Further details about this event can be found on the Irish Protestant Playwrights website.

Book Launch: Finnian Ó Cionnaith, Exercise of Authority

exercise of authority cover

The launch of Finnian Ó Cionnaith’s new book Exercise of authority: Surveyor Thomas Owen and the paving, cleansing and lighting of Georgian Dublin is taking place on Wednesday 10 Feb at the Mansion House, Dublin. The book considers the work of the Dublin Paving Board and the ways in which this organisation controlled and maintained the streets of Georgian Dublin. It is the second in a series of books sponsored but Dublin City council on the history of engineering in the city. The Lord Mayor and Dr. Kieran Feighan of Engineers Ireland will be speaking at the launch.

 

Theatre in the Regency Era Conference

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A conference entitled ‘Theatre in the Regency Era: Plays, Performance, Practice 1795-1843’ will take place in Downing College, University of Cambridge, on July 29-31, 2016. Early bird rates are available until 30 January 2016.

This conference will explore the Regency Era’s dance, music and drama from a wide range of historical and methodological perspectives. The keynote address will be given by Celina Fox (The Arts of Industry in the Age of Enlightenment), and historical gesture specialist Jed Wentz (Conservatorium van Amsterdam) will present a lecture-performance. In addition, the conference will open with an introduction by Iain Mackintosh (Architecture, Actor and Audience) at the remarkable Cambridge Festival Theatre (built in 1814), providing a rare opportunity for conference attendees to see an original surviving Regency three-level horseshoe auditorium.

For further details and to book the conference, please see: www.regencytheatre2016.com

Lost Shelley Poem Made Public

ECIS members may be interested in a recent article from The Guardian about a lost poem written by Percy Bysshe Shelley which was made public for the first time in more than 200 years last week.

The 172-line poem, accompanied by an essay and Shelley’s notes, was written in support of the Irish journalist Peter Finnerty, who had been jailed for libelling the Anglo-Irish politician Viscount Castlereagh.

Follow this link to read the full article, ‘Lost Shelley poem execrating “rank corruption” of ruling class made public’, on The Guardian website

IHS Talk: Dr Eoin Kinsella, Testing the Limits of the Penal Laws, 17 November

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Dr Eoin Kinsella (Irish Association of Professional Historians) will be presenting a paper entitled ‘Testing the limits of the penal laws’ at the next meeting of the Irish Historical Society on 17 November 2015.

The meeting will be held at 7.00 p.m. in the Centre for Irish Programmes, Boston College Dublin, 43 St. Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2.

All are welcome.

Jonathan Swift Symposium, 17 October 2015

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The fourteenth Dublin International Symposium on Jonathan Swift will take place from 2 pm to 5 pm on Saturday 17 October 2015 at The Deanery, Upper Kevin Street, Dublin 8.

Speakers

Professor Michael Brown, (History, University of Aberdeen), “How English was Jonathan Swift?”

Professor Aida Ramos (Economics, University of Dallas), “Swift’s Economics: An Alternative to English Mercantilism”

Dr. Charles Ivar McGrath (History, University College, Dublin), “The Grand Question Debated: Swift, Army Barracks and Money”

Professor Moyra Haslett (English, Queen’s University, Belfast), “Singing at the Club: Songs on the Wood’s Halfpence Affair, Dublin 1724-25”

Respondent: Dr. Clíona Ó Gallchoir, Department of English, UCC.

To register please telephone 01 453 9472 or email dean@stpatrickscathedral.ie

Sunday 18 October 2015 – 15.15

Annual Service in Commemoration of Jonathan Swift; Saint Patrick’s Cathedral Dublin

Address: Dr. Aileen Douglas, Associate Professor of English, Trinity College, Dublin.

DDFAS Talk at the RIA: Toile and Trouble

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Tomorrow evening in the Royal Irish Academy member’s room, John Gibson, Chairman of the Dublin Decorative and Fine Arts Society, will give a talk entitled ‘Toile and Trouble: The Story of Toile de Jouy’.

Ever since it’s invention by Francis Nixon in Drumcondra in 1752, Toile de Jouy has been more than just a home furnishing fabric. It has chronicled the leisure and interests of the bourgeoisie of the period, from the pastoral ideal of picnicking in the countryside, to hot air ballooning, contemporary literature, opera, and theatre. It has also been used by those seeking to subvert the establishment, as reflected by American revolutionary and other republican designs. New generations of designers continued this tradition, from Ireland’s Sybil Connolly to New Yorker Sheila Bridges, whose Harlem Toile is pictured above. Our chairman, John Gibson, will explore the Irish origins and continuing relevance of this most unlikely of contested grounds.

  • Wednesday the 7th of October, The Royal Irish Academy, 19 Dawson St.
  • Doors open at 6.30 pm and the lecture begins at 7 pm sharp.
  • Please R.S.V.P. to dubdecandfine@gmail.com

New Publication: Enlightening Enthusiasm by Lionel Laborie

laborieIn the summer 1706, three Protestant refugees from the last French war of religion arrived in London to prophesy the fall of Rome and Christ’s imminent Second Coming. They claimed to be inspired by the Holy Spirit, experienced bodily agitations and sought to revive the apostolic Church. Within two years, these ‘French Prophets’ counted nearly 500 followers, including Huguenots, Anglicans, Philadelphians, Quakers, Presbyterians, Baptists, Quietists and even Jews. Their movement launched missionary tribes after failing to resurrect one of their members from the dead and spread across Europe. They remained active in Britain until the late 1740s, reappearing sporadically among the first Methodists, Moravians and Shakers.

The French Prophets sparked one of the greatest controversies in eighteenth-century England, marked by a prodigious battle of pamphlets on revealed religion and miracles, violent riots and a political trial. They were branded as ‘enthusiasts’, then a derogatory label for religious fanaticism, but one whose modern representation largely draws upon the hostile discourse of Augustan moralists.

In his new book, Enlightening Enthusiasm: Prophecy and Religious Experience in Early Eighteenth-Century England (Manchester University Press, 2015), Lionel Laborie examines the nature of religious enthusiasm against the backdrop of the early English Enlightenment. It offers the first comprehensive approach to enthusiasm by looking at this multifarious issue from a social, religious, cultural, political and medical perspective. Based on new archival research, it challenges our modern understanding of this originally infamous term by dissociating religious experience from millenarianism, radical dissent and popular religion, to shed new light on the reality of enthusiasm in early Enlightenment England.

The book can be ordered from Manchester University Press. Follow this link for further information.

New Approaches to Ossian Symposium

The first collected edition of James Macpherson’s Ossian poems, The Works of Ossian was published in two volumes in 1765. To mark the 250th anniversary of this significant cultural event and the development of a new online resource, Ossian Online, a one-day symposium and public lecture will be held in the Royal Irish Academy, 19 Dawson street, Dublin on Friday 4 September 2015.

Reflecting the diversity of Ossian’s appeal, the symposium will feature speakers from a range of disciplines, presenting papers on new and recent research on Macpherson’s work. These talks will present new perspectives on familiar topics such as the role and meaning of Ireland in Ossian and Gaelic sources for the poetry, alongside considerations of the current status of Ossian studies in the academy and its potential place in public humanities. Digital humanities projects that focus on Ossian are represented by presentations on Ossian Online and on network analysis of the Ossian corpus. The symposium concludes with a public lecture by James Mulholland (North Carolina State University) on “Ossian and the Global Crisis in Authenticity”.

Attendance is free, but delegates are asked to register for the symposium on the Eventbrite website where you can also access the full programme.

This symposium is supported by the Irish Research Council’s New Foundations Scheme. Ossian Online is supported by the Moore Institute; School of Humanities, National University of Ireland, Galway; and the National Library of Scotland.

Literary Landscape of Ireland Storymap

Literary landscape

Michelle from Ard na Sidhe Country House, in Co. Kerry has put together an interactive StoryMap called ‘A Literary Landscape of Ireland’ to celebrate all of Ireland’s most prolific writers and poets.

This StoryMap highlights many of the places that inspired the writers and poets involved, as well as the locations where the writers grew up and attended school.

The entry on Jonathan Swift might be of particular interest to ECIS blog readers.

Follow this link to view the Literary Landscape of Ireland StoryMap in a new window.

CFP: Irish Panels at the 2016 ASECS Conference

The American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies will hold its annual meeting in Pittsburgh, PA on 31 March to 3 April 2016.

The Irish Caucus is given two panels at the annual ASECS meeting.  Please see the descriptions of these panels below and consider proposing a paper for one of them.  Graduate students and junior scholars are especially encouraged to submit proposals. Abstract of your paper (approximately 300 words) can be sent to Scott.Breuninger@usd.edu by 15 September 2015.

Panel 1: The Irish Enlightenment VIII

Over the past decade, scholars of the Enlightenment have increasingly recognized the contributions of Ireland to broader strands of eighteenth-century thought and the place of Irish thinkers’ work within the context of European and Atlantic intellectual movements.  This research has spawned an increasing number of essays, books, and conference panels, illustrating the vitality of debate concerning the Irish dimension of the Enlightenment and collectively helping to define the nature of the Irish Enlightenment.  This panel welcomes participants whose work focuses on Irish thought and/or its relationship to the Enlightenment world, especially papers that utilize new methodological approaches to the study of intellectual history; including (but not limited to) models drawn from the digital humanities, global history, and/or gender studies.

Panel 2: Conflict and Violence in Eighteenth-Century Ireland

During the long eighteenth-century, warfare and violence was inscribed upon Ireland.  The century began in the wake of the Battle of the Boyne and ended with the aftermath of the Rebellion of 1798.  Between these irruptions of conflict, Irish life was transformed by a series of internal rebellions and international wars.  This panel welcomes papers that explore how these destructive forces shaped the lives of people in Ireland during this period (politically, religiously, economically, socially) and/or how they were represented in popular culture (theatre, literature, history).

Follow this link to visit the ASECS website for further information.

Resources: Journal•Lists

journal lists

Journal•Lists is a free subscription service that emails you historical novels, periodicals and diaries in short e-installments.

It has been designed to recapture the process of reading in installments that was a key part of the reading experience in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. It also offers a new way of reading diaries and letters that encourages a closer connection with their authors’ daily lives.

The first Journal•Lists goes live on 14 August with James Boswell’s Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides. If you sign up, you will receive each entry of Boswell’s diary on the anniversary of the day it was written.

Upcoming Journal•Lists will include The Spectator and Lord Byron’s Ravenna.

Go to www.journallists.wordpress.com to find out more.