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Traces of 18th-Century Roman Catholic Church Found in Dublin

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

DUBLIN, IRELAND—The Irish Times reports that traces of an eighteenth-century Roman Catholic church building have been uncovered on Tara Street, in the center of Dublin, at a housing site scheduled for redevelopment. Archaeologist Franc Myles said the church, known as St. Andrew’s, was built in 1709, at a time when so-called Penal Laws restricted the religious, political, and economic activities of Roman Catholics and Protestant dissenters from the Church of Ireland. Thousands of worshippers attended Roman Catholic services in the structure, however. An inscribed foundation stone was laid in 1814 for the construction of a new chapel for the growing parish, but the project was abandoned in 1831, when a newly appointed priest decided to move the church to a more central location. Myles said that no graveyard had been attached to the church, and so his team does not expect to uncover any human remains during the excavation. Much of the church structure and seventeenth-century features are thought to have been destroyed when the housing development was constructed in the 1960s, he added. For more on archaeology in Dublin, go to "Treasures of Rathfarnham Castle."

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