Beranger Watercolours

The artist Gabriel Beranger was born in Amsterdam in c. 1729. He lived in Ireland from 1750 and remained in the country until his death in 1817. He is noted for his antiquarian sketches and watercolours, and for gathering information on the Yola language, a variety of English once spoken in the baronies of Forth and Bargy in Co. Wexford.

For more on Beranger, see the Library Ireland website here, or take a look at Sir William Wilde’s, Memoir of Gabriel Beranger and his labours in the cause of Irish Art and Antiquities (1880), which is available on here.

University College Dublin owns a collection of eighteenth century watercolour drawings made by, or for, Beranger. Other artists whose work features in the ‘Beranger’ collection include: Thomas Ashworth; Charles Vallancey; William Ashworth; Thomas Penrose; Henry Graham; Jonathan Fisher; Sir Vesey Colclough; John Dawson; James Simon; and Jonathan Fisher.

These watercolours have been digitised and can be viewed online. To give you an idea of what’s available I’ve picked out four images (below), showing sites in Meath, Limerick, Cork and Dublin. Images of sites in Kilkenny, Tallaght, Westmeath, Kildare, Dalkey, Wexford, Offaly, Roscommon, Waterford, Glendalough, Laois and Carlow are also available so it’s well worth visiting the UCD Digital Library website to explore the full collection.

Dunshaghlin Church
‘Dunshaghlin [Dunshaughlin] Church’ (Co. Meath), by Gabriel Beranger
‘Castle Troy’ (Co. Limerick), by Charles Vallancey


Ballincolly Castle
Two watercolour paintings of ‘Ballincolly [Ballincollig] Castle’ (Co. Cork), by Charles Vallancey
Archiepiscopal Palace
Watercolour painting of the ‘Archiepiscopal Palace’ (Archbishop of Dublin’s residence, Kevin Street, Dublin) by Gabriel Beranger.