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“A pleasure for the eye throughout”

Chester Beatty Library
Ranked #17 of 514 things to do in Dublin
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: With free admission and described by the Lonely Planet as 'not just the best museum in Ireland, but one of the best in Europe,' the Chester Beatty Library is a must-see on any Dublin visitor's itinerary. As the only museum in Ireland to win 'European Museum of the Year', the library's rich collections from countries across Asia, the Middle East, North Africa and Europe open a window on the artistic treasures of the great cultures and religions of the world. Winter Hours: The Museum will be closed on Mondays from November through February
Useful Information: Food available for purchase, Lockers / storage, Stairs / lift, Wheelchair access, Bathroom facilities, Activities for older children, Activities for young children
Reviewed 22 May 2018

This is an absolutely stunning collection of rare manuscripts and books, miniature paintings, prints, drawings and decorative arts, beautifully displayed in a modern and well-designed building next to Dublin castle. Of course you will expect to see fine European illuminated medieval manuscripts presented here. However, you may not have expected to see an incredible collection of copies of the Quran, nor an exquisite assembly of Chinese and Japanese scrolls and prints. There is more than that, but this is just to give you a taste of the richness of this collection.

The story behind is also fascinating. Alfred Chester Beatty (1875-1968), a self-made American multi-millionaire in the mining industry, started his collection already at a young age, moved to England and became a naturalized British citizen in 1933. He intended to leave his collection the British Museum, but as they would not keep his collection as one entity, he moved to Dublin in 1950 and donated the entire collection to Ireland. He became an honorary Irish citizen in 1957.

He was a man out of the extraordinary. He was knighted in 1954 by Queen Elizabeth II in recognition of the war materials he had donated to the allied war efforts.

The same can be said about his collection - out of the extraordinary. An absolute gem!

Thank Niels E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"amazing collection"
in 160 reviews
"grounds of dublin castle"
in 77 reviews
"world religions"
in 64 reviews
"silk road cafe"
in 62 reviews
"illuminated manuscripts"
in 87 reviews
"religious texts"
in 58 reviews
"rooftop garden"
in 52 reviews
"private collection"
in 46 reviews
"major religions"
in 40 reviews
"asian art"
in 39 reviews
"on display"
in 153 reviews
"ancient books"
in 64 reviews
"new testament"
in 32 reviews
"free museum"
in 39 reviews
"book lovers"
in 31 reviews
"small museum"
in 39 reviews
"gift shop"
in 68 reviews

165 - 169 of 3,664 reviews

Reviewed 22 May 2018 via mobile

One of the worlds finest collection of manuscripts and Middle Eastern art
The quality of the collection is unrivalled.

Thank Niall D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 May 2018 via mobile

This is one of those brilliant museums that has a modest collection of really high quality artefacts. From Bible extracts on papyrus from 150AD through beautiful illuminated manuscripts from all religions. A terrific summary of the history of the written/printed word. Item descriptions are concise and interesting.

Thank J.C. B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 May 2018

This is a slightly quirky museum, not too big but with amazing treasures inside. The Temporary Exhibition:
Miniature Masterpiece: The Coëtivy Hours were absolutely amazing. Such fine work. Gotta see them.
Chester Beatty was an interesting man.

Thank skilakimou
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 19 May 2018

It’s not huge but it is just packed with things to look at. From Arabic writing to Japanese woodblock prints to heavily embroidered kimonos. The detail is amazing. And it’s free -though it’s only fair to leave a donation.

1  Thank Oona R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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