|An idyllic 18th century view of Rathfarnham Castle|
For many years, it was owned by the the Jesuits who sold Rathfarnham Castle to a property development group. Before leaving, they removed the stained glass windows from the chapel, made in the famous Harry Clarke studios and donated them to Tullamore Catholic Church which had been destroyed by fire in 1983. The other windows were donated to Our Lady's Hospice, Harold's Cross and Temple Street Children's Hospital, Dublin.
The Irish nation was so horrified that the site was going to be demolished that in 1987 it was bought by the Irish Government and was declared a National Monument.
|Rathfarnham today - during preservation work|
In the winter of 1840–1, in the days when snow and ice and all their attendant pleasures were more often in evidence than in these degenerate days, a skating party was enjoying itself on the pond in the grounds of the Castle near Rathfarnham, Co. Dublin. Among the skaters was a man who had with him a very fine curly-coated retriever dog. The pond was thronged with people enjoying themselves, when suddenly the ice gave way beneath him, and the man fell into the water; the dog went to his rescue, and both were drowned. A monument was erected to perpetuate the memory of the dog's heroic self-sacrifice, but only the pedestal now remains. The ghost of the dog is said to haunt the grounds and the public road between the castle gate and the Dodder Bridge. Many people have seen the phantom dog, and the story is well known locally.
|The main castle entrance at Rathfarnham Castle|