St Fin Barre's Cathedral Cork City -
           courtesy of Blue Dolphin B&B, Cork
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St Fin Barre's Cathedral (C of I)
  • St Fin Barre's Cathedral (C of I) - Cork's gem of architecture - dedicated to the founder and patron saint of the City of Cork.

    Designed by William Burgess (1827 - 1881), built in the French Gothic style, erected at a cost of over £100,000 and standing where St. Finbarr originally built his church in the 7th century.

    The present building replaces two earlier churches and was completed and dedicated in 1870.    

    St Finbarre's has three spires - the tallest central tower and spire reaching 240 ft.    The peal of eight bells cast by Rudhalls of Gloucester are from a previous church and are hung in the north-west tower.    

    The West front, with its three recessed doors, its elaborate carving, its beautiful rose window and its graceful twin spires, is the most striking feature.    

    The stained glass windows are numerous and rich.    Those of the aisles and transepts represent scenes from the Old Testament beginning with the Creation, which is pictured in the west Rose Window.     In the ambulatory round the Choir are scenes from the New Testament.     

    The Bishop's Throne is also worthy of note.     It rests on a plinth of red marble quarried in the county.    On the three panels are carved the heads in profile of twenty bishops who have filled the See of Cork.    

    On a bracket in the south transept is a cannon ball fired during the Siege of Cork 1690, which was
    found embedded in the tower of the old Cathedral.    

    The mosaic pavement in the Choir was executed in Paris by Italian artists and illustrates the Parable of the Net.    

    The roof of the Sanctuary, divided into 22 bays, has been decorated in accordance with the designs of the architect, William Burgess, as a memorial to Bishop Dowse (died 1933).     A painting of Christ in Glory seated on a throne and surrounded by a choir of angels occupies the apex of the roof.

    Marked by a tablet near the pulpit, is the grave of Mrs Aldworth, said to have been the only woman Freemason.

  • Reference: 1970 AA Illustrated Road Book of Ireland

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Cork City Churches, Church in Cork, Cathedral of St Fin Barre -
spellings in use in Cork — Finbarre, Finbarr, Finbar, Fin Barre, Finn Barr