St. Mary's Cathedral, Limerick

St. Mary's Cathedral, Limerick (must see)

Also called Limerick Cathedral, Saint Mary's is dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary. In 1168, Domnal More Ua Briain, the last King of Munster, founded the cathedral on the site of his palace on King's Island. The original main entrance of the palace became the great west door of the cathedral, so closely was the cathedral joined to the palace.

After more than 850 years of renovations, St Mary's Cathedral today is not purely of one style or another. There are aspects of both Romanesque and Gothic styles. The arches appear Romanesque, while the windows are Gothic. The basic plan is the form of a Latin cross. The Romanesque west doorway has carvings of chevrons and other motifs.

The cathedral's tower is a 120-foot-high square structure with a carillon of eight bells. It was added to the original construction in the 14th century. The building is wrapped in graduated battlements surmounted by turrets at the angles. The interior has a nave and choir, separated from the aisles by a gallery of pointed arches.

A rare feature to note is the carved misericords in the choir. They date from 1480. They are folding boards that assist in standing for long periods. The carvings include a one-horned two-legged goat, a griffin, a sphinx, a boar, a dragon, antelopes, swans, eagles, and an angel that looks like Henry IV, King of England.

The St. Mary's Cathedral is one of the oldest buildings in Limerick, standing majestically over the city on the banks of the River Shannon. Today the cathedral is still used for its original purpose as a place of worship and prayer for everybody. It is open to the public every day from 9:00 am to 4:45 pm.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Limerick. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play Store. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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St. Mary's Cathedral on Map

Sight Name: St. Mary's Cathedral
Sight Location: Limerick, Ireland (See walking tours in Limerick)
Sight Type: Religious
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Limerick, Ireland

Create Your Own Walk in Limerick

Create Your Own Walk in Limerick

Creating your own self-guided walk in Limerick is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Limerick Introduction Walking Tour

Limerick Introduction Walking Tour

Claudius Ptolemy, the great geographer of the ancient world, drew a map of Ireland in 150 AD. Indicated on the map was a place now called King's Island. It is said generous King Cormac ruled here in the 4th century. Here is where St Patrick baptized King Carthann the Fair in 434. Here is the ancient heart of Limerick.

St Munchin had been the first bishop of Limerick in 652. In 812, Vikings...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.0 Km or 1.9 Miles