Marsh's Library

Marsh's Library, Dublin: Hours, Address, Marsh's Library Reviews: 4.5/5

Marsh's Library
4.5
09:30 - 17:00
Tuesday
09:30 - 17:00
Wednesday
09:30 - 17:00
Thursday
09:30 - 17:00
Friday
09:30 - 17:00
Saturday
10:00 - 17:00
About
One of Dublin's most beautiful tourist attractions. Established in 1707, Marsh's Library is a beautifully preserved library of the early Enlightenment complete with its original oak bookcases. Visitors often comment on the wonderful smell. The library contains over 25,000 rare and interesting books, and our current exhibition brings a selection of these to life for visitors.
Suggested duration
< 1 hour
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The area
Address
Neighbourhood: South City Centre
How to get there
  • St. Stephen's Green • 8 min walk
  • Harcourt • 10 min walk
Popular mentions

4.5
641 reviews
Excellent
436
Very good
160
Average
38
Poor
6
Terrible
1

Milena
Los Angeles, CA4 contributions
Dec 2021
Really enjoyed exploring the first public library in Ireland! The history is really unique and they had a very cute Lego minifgure scavenger hunt that made it even more engaging. It's a less popular or known spot but we learned a lot and the rooms were gorgeous.
Written 20 December 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Wanderlust_till2073
Nashville, TN25 contributions
Nov 2021 • Solo
If you want to step back in time to the 18th century, entering a library that has changed little since it’s opening in 1707 as the first public library in Ireland, then go to the Marsh’s Library. The staff, obviously passionate for the collection and it’s historical place, can guide you through the remarkable collection. For the bibliophilic, this is dream come true! Stored on its many shelves is a collection of manuscripts that have been in the same position for three centuries. Archbishop Narcissus Marsh, the energy and visionary behind the library, is a story of its own. Based upon his personal library as well as his book collection, he apparently was a remarkable renaissance man, a polyglot, who read multiple texts covering wide range of subjects including religion, history, science, and law. For example, in the library, you can find Hebrew manuscripts, rare on the Emerald island given the small Jewish population. It turns out, he taught Hebrew, among other subjects, at Trinity college in 1680s. Further description of his exemplary scholarly and reverent life is found at the library. If you are lucky, if Irish an easy enough feat, you will even discover the ghosts of James Joyce and Abraham Stoker (of “Dracula” fame) in the Old Reading Room. Additionally, you find bullet holes in the Elias Bouhereau’s collection, a gift of British soldiers during the 1916 uprising. Overall, a unique experience for those who chose “not to judge a book by its cover”.
Written 30 November 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wow, thank you so much for this review! I think you can be an honorary life member!
Written 7 December 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

A.D.
3 contributions
Nov 2021
Came to the library after a tour guide vaguely mentioned: the place was haunted, there were cages where people were locked in while reading to prevent book theft, and folks went there to research witchcraft. Turns out the library is supposedly by haunted by its founder (based on a Google search), there were in fact cages in the back to prevent people from absconding with books, and Bram Stoker did his research at the library which included reading on witchcraft,

The women who worked at library were very nice. The somewhat older woman who spoke to us most seemed very passionate about her job and the library. She shared a lot about its history, the current exhibit, and prior exhibits in the library. Whatever they're paying her, I'm fairly sure she deserves more.

The library had a scavenger hunt intended for children; nine Lego figures were hidden throughout the library to be spotted (8 figures closely related to the library, and 1 guest Lego figurine). It was for kids, but it gives a bit of extra engagement that many adults would enjoy (my wife and I took a picture of each figurine as we found them, for social media purposes, I guess).
Written 28 November 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you so much for your kind review. We're so glad you enjoyed your visit. Greatly appreciated.
Written 7 December 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

JB Smithwicks
3 contributions
Sep 2021
When we entered this library, we felt we were walking back in time. The authenticity is so high, it borders on the unreal. We've travelled to Dublin more than 30 times, but it was only because we opted to stay in the Liberties, an area that has transformed itself from sketchy to cool (and safe) that we stumbled on this incredible place. The women at the check-in desk and at the desk inside the library expertly illuminated the storied past and treasures held within. There is absolutely no reason if you tour St. Patrick's nearby not to walk a few steps down the sidewalk and give this place a look-see. Like Iveagh Gardens, these less travelled sites are at the top of our Dublin favorites lists. And they don't take a serious bite out of your schedule while returning a powerful impression. Fun fact: A scene from Michael Collins was filmed here.
Written 8 October 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you for your lovely review, much appreciated!
Written 7 December 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

GillJezz
Aberystwyth, UK465 contributions
Sep 2021
A taxi driver recommended this and we shall be forever grateful. A walk through a bit of Irelands rich literary history with a great atmosphere and a lovely lady behind a desk halfway round telling a few facts, anecdotes and stories from the past
Written 29 September 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you, we are delighted that you enjoyed your visit to us.
Written 7 December 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Alfie C
6 contributions
Aug 2020 • Solo
I was originally intending to visit St Patrick's Cathedral but this was right next door, so I thought I'd take a look. The lady at the front desk was lovely and gave an overview of the key facts before I walked through. Full of history and a perfect addition to your sightseeing schedule as it only takes 15 minutes. The €5 donation is worth it, or students go free.
Written 25 August 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you for writing us a review, so glad you enjoyed the library.
Written 7 December 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

KleineHexe
Eindhoven, The Netherlands43 contributions
Feb 2020 • Couples
This little gem is tucked behind St. Patrick's cathedral as is worth visiting! It was the first public library in Dublin when it opened I 1702.
Written 1 March 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Great that we are still called 'a gem', thank you!
Written 7 December 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Alejandra LAG
48 contributions
Jan 2020
It is right next door to St Patrick’s cathedral, and they showcase beautiful books. They had an exhibition with books Bram Stoker used for his Dracula research that was quite interesting. It is small, so it only takes about 10-15 min to visit, and some may feel it is not worth the entrance fee, but it really is something to see once.
Written 17 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thanks so much for your review, much appreciated.
Written 6 February 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Jos B
3 contributions
Dec 2019
Thanks to a tip from a Flemish girl on the campsite, below Dublin, I came upon this small and exquisite library, the oldest public library from Ireland. And no bus stops here...! I visited it already in July 2018.
Written 27 December 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
We love word of mouth!
Written 6 February 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

jusmike
Kittery, ME109 contributions
Nov 2019
We were there on a rainy day, so it wasn't crowded and we were lucky to sit down and talk with a very informative gentleman. He gave us some interesting facts about Bram Stoker. Well worth the visit.
Written 13 December 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you for taking the time to review us, much appreciated.
Written 6 February 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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