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Space to Think, a new book celebrating ten years of the Dublin Review of Books More Information 

The Politics of Love

Mary Granville, later Mary Pendarves and Mary Delany, was bullied into marriage with an older man aged seventeen for financial reasons: 'I was married with great pomp. Never was woe drest out in gayer colours ...
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The Bell Rings, Over A Black Pool

A poem from Moya Cannon's latest collection makes connections between medieval Dublin, a querulous student and south Dublin's most pleasant amenity.
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Hallelujah for the Bums

George Frederick Handel's sublime `Messiah', first performed in Dublin in 1742, was not entirely about giving the bourgeoise a nice outing. Its purpose was to raise funds to relieve distress, which then, even more than now, was prevalent in Dublin.
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Wider Please

In 1757, the Wide Streets Commission was set up to lay down wide modern streets which leading citizens felt were essential to a modern and prestigious city. Unfortunately Dublin was not to remain such a city for very long.
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Kissing Cousins

James Cousins, an early literary revival figure, fell for Gretta Gillespie. Gretta overcame an early antipathy and they married, embracing vegetarianism and theosophy, which provided a focus for enthusiasm in the absence of “some more artistic way of continuance of the race”.
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A city frozen in time

The prevailing culture in Dublin is one of conservation: we don't like the new or the modern, preferring the old and crumbling. So why then has there been such sentiment about the Poolbeg chimneys, symbols of an industrial era we seem to be happy to turn our backs on?
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If the Brits had won ...

If Tom Barry and Winston Churchill had succeeded in reigniting the Anglo-Irish War, who would have emerged victorious? And would Ireland now enjoy a system of universal health care?
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Jeering the men of 1916

It is fairly well known that volunteers captured in 1916 were sometimes jeered at by crowds of working class Dubliners on their way to imprisonment. What exactly can we read into this and what does it tell us about the legitimacy of the rising?
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Remembering George Byrne

Journalist, film critic, pundit and ferocious conversationalist George Byrne died last week. John Fleming remembers the early years.
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The Dublin Library Society

A nineteenth century Dublin institution, first located in Eustace Street and then in D'Olier Street, afforded its members access to newspapers, pamphlets and serious literature, all for the price of one guinea a year.
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Liffey Street Angelus

A poem by Keith Payne from his latest collection
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Coláiste na Tríonóide and the new state

In the atmosphere of bitterness and political contention which followed the setting up of the new Irish state in the 1920s, Trinity College Dublin wished to be allowed to stand somewhat apart from the rest of society as a unionist bastion. It was not to prevail.
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A Melancholy Shipwreck

In 1821, the ‘Earl of Moira’, bound from Liverpool to Dublin, sank near the Cheshire coast with great loss of life. Many of the passengers ‘were of most respectable families’ and on their way to accompany King George on an Irish visit. The people of Wallasey fell on their possessions with great glee.
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A Gift of Cabbage, A Stolen Cauliflower

In November 1938, on the pretext of revenge for the assassination in Paris of German diplomat Ernst vom Rath by Herschel Grynszpan, the Nazis launched the attack on Jewish life and property known as Kristallnacht. Some subsequent exiles ended up in Ireland.
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Mystery and Marian

Blazes Boylan's secretary, Miss Dunne, didn't like too much ould nonsense in her love stories. Did Walter Hartright love Marian Halcombe or didn't he? Probably not, but did Blazes Boylan love Marian Tweedy (Molly Bloom)?
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Guinness Has Been Good - For You

When told that the Guinnesses had been good for Dubliners Brendan Behan responded that Dubliners had been good for the Guinnesses.. A good quip, but not entirely fair, as the historical record indicates.
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Crustaceans on D'Olier Street

One of Dublin's main North-South thoroughfares once boasted a fine dining venue which attracted poets and writers, when they had a few bob.
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A Dublin Commemoration

Thomas Moore has fallen out of favour. Even his statue seems to have disappeared. His flame still burned brightly however on the occasion of his centenary in 1879, when a concert in his honour almost led to a riot.
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Dublin At Your Feet

A number of pavement lights on the streets of south central Dublin bear the name Hayward Brothers. They were produced by the same family which also gave us a noted Irish actor, singer and travel writer.
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Tread Softly

Is Thomas Davis on the way to becoming a forgotten hero, yet another of those monumental figures from the past which say to us 'who is it now, who exactly was he?'
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