The reasons why you should visit the National Museum of Ireland

Be a tourist in your own city – exploring Dublin museums with free admission

The National Museum of Ireland – Archaeology 

We are back with our second post about museums with free admission in Dublin. After a week of decent weather, we might face a few days with the traditional Irish rain… So why not enjoy the rainy days to explore the museums of our city with a cup of tea afterwards? 

The National Museum of Ireland has four different buildings, each one housing different collections. The first one was built in Kildare Street and opened to the public in 1890, displaying coins, medals, Irish antiquities from the Royal Irish Academy, ethnographic collections and much more. That’s the building we are going to talk about today.

The National Museum of Ireland – Archaeology

The building, on Kildare Street, was built in the Victorian Palladian style and designed by the architects Thomas Newenham Deane and his son Thomas Manly Deane. Today it is the home of the archaeological collections of the National Museum of Ireland.

Photograph: Flora Gusmao

The collections are very rich and interesting. The permanent exhibitions are: 

The Treasury, allocated in three galleries, regarding the development of Irish Art from the Iron Age to the twelfth century AD; 

Ór – Ireland’s Gold, a collection of prehistoric goldwork ranges from 2200 BC to 500 BC; 

Prehistoric Ireland, about human settlement in Ireland from 7000 BC to the Late Bronze Age around  500 BC; Viking Ireland, regarding the Viking Age in Ireland through surviving objects from 800 AD; 

Ceramics and Glass from Ancient Cyprus, displaying Cypriot artefacts, mostly ceramic from tombs uncovered in the 19th century and dated from the Bronze Age to the late Roman period. 

Photograph: Flora Gusmao

The museum also has temporary exhibitions, like Clontarf 1014: Brian Boru and the Battle for Dublin, regarding myths about Brian Boru and the Battle of Clontarf. There you can see Viking and Irish weapons, precious silver objects and religious treasures on display. Unfortunately at the date of the completion of this post a few exhibitions were temporarily closed, but still there is much to see!

My opinion as a historian and medievalist might be a little biased, but this museum is definitely one of my favourites! If you have any interest in History, this is a place you can’t miss! The artefacts are fascinating, the collections are diverse and from different periods, and the building is so beautiful, I  personally love the flooring! 

Photograph: Flora Gusmao

The admission to the museum is still free, but due to the current situation it’s necessary to book a visit online. Tickets can be booked up to and including 15 minutes before a timed visit if capacity is available. Don’t forget to take a look at the shop and support the museum if you can!

Flora Gusmao

Brazilian Historian with MBA in Museum Management – based in Dublin, Ireland

Published by artmultibrazil

We are a group of Brazilian professionals of art and culture based in Dublin. Our goal is to make stronger the work connections between Brazilian and European professions of these areas and to amplify the artistic, cultural and Brazilian identity abroad. Follow our contact for information, partnerships and projects.

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