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Armagh Robinson Library

Discover centuries of books and manuscripts as well as an array of other fascinating historical artifacts within the walls of this stately 18th-century building.

Armagh Robinson Library (formerly Armagh Public Library) is one of Ireland’s oldest libraries. Many of its collections date back even further than the beautiful historic building that houses them. Enter the library and find yourself in literary paradise, with bookcases reaching all the way up to the top of the building’s high ceilings. In addition to these written treasures, the library also houses a wide selection of other fascinating historical items.

Make sure you pause to admire this elegant Georgian building from the outside before you enter. The library was established in 1771 by Archbishop Richard Robinson and today his personal collection of 17th and 18th-century books remains a star attraction here. Look for the Greek inscription above the library’s entrance, which offers some insight into the Archbishop’s grand vision for the library. The inscription translates to “the healing place of the soul.”

Step inside the library and enjoy the peace and calm offered by this beautiful space. Take some time to simply browse the bookshelves or to sit and read. View the rare artifacts housed in glass cases around the building. See the notes and markings left by Jonathan Swift himself on the library’s incredibly rare first edition of the novel Gulliver’s Travels, which is dated October 28, 1726. Linger over the other books of great historical significance on display here, such as De Praeceptis Decalogi by John Gerson, printed in 1488.

The library’s collections are not just limited to books. Find everything from rare maps to ancient coins here, as well as archeological artifacts such as axes and arrowheads from Ireland’s distant past.

Enter Armagh Robinson Library for free, though keep in mind that donations are welcomed. The library is usually open Monday through Friday apart from bank holidays, and special events are held here fairly regularly. Check ahead to see if there is something on that will capture your imagination or your children’s. There could be no place more certain to foster a love of reading.


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