October 14, 2022
Trinity College Library and the Book of Kells

On our way back through Dublin we had an afternoon to spare. Being wise to the popularity of the Trinity College Library we were clever and booked tickets in advance this time. The tour is guided by and app on your phone that gives you an audio tour of the various exhibits as you walk through the building. It started with an introduction to various ancient forms of recording information and then went into lots of detail on the writing, pigments and process of creating the book of Kells. After this you got to go through a dimly light room with the book enclosed in glass and a guard to enforce the strict no photography rule. The book is closely monitored for exposure to light and the pages are turned to limit exposure on individual pages in order to reduce further deterioration. The page that was open as we went through was not one of the hugely ornate ones but rather simple text with some fancy characters on each line. It was very pretty and clearly the work of many hours of very careful labour. Dating from roughly 800AD is really is quite the impressive work. After that you are led into the "long room". This is the main library. A truly massive room with two floors of super tall bookshelves (with ladders to access them on each floor). This room also houses the trinity harp. This is a harp from the 14th or 15th century and was used as a model for the Irish coat of arms and the logo for Guinness. It was definitely worth a visit and uncle Chris was very happy to have gotten to see it after having missed out at the start of our trip.

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