THE CRYPT AT ST. MICHAN’S CHURCH – Dublin, Ireland

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St. Michan’s Church – –   looks innocent enough, right?

October 4, 2016

Originally  built in 1095 to serve the Viking population of ancient Ireland for more then 5 centuries. The original building, made of wood, no longer exists.  The present building dates back to 1685.  Most interesting about the church today is the  burial vaults and…..

Also,  according to legend,  Bram Stoker, a  former resident of Dublin, studied the  bodies in the crypt for his book “ Dracula”.  He also researched the Irish  vampire legend ,  Abhartach   and the  accused that was  buried  standing and upside down in Glenullin, Ireland.    Stoker’s mother was buried in the graveyard behind the St Michan’s.

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steps

Entering the 2 vaults was just as creepy as stepping down into my Grandma’s canning cellar, but  that’s only the beginning…..

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Some of the vaults are private and thus locked with an iron gate, but others are open.  The caskets are placed in  no particular order.   Two of the private vaults are still “active”,  meaning  there is still family alive that will be  utilizing some  space in the future.

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Besides  bones, much dust has accumulated and remnants of flowers and wreaths are present also.

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In this  vault, the  plain casket placed to the left  side was “the black sheep of the family”.  Thus no fancy casket and he was  placed off to the side, alone, as no other family member wanted to lay close to him for eternity.

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This open  vault shows the mummified state of  Dubliners from the 17 – 19th century.    For some  unknown reason, the bodies in the vault are well preserved (considering  the time past) but their caskets are disintegrating.  One of the residents is 800 years old and measures 6 , ½ feet tall – the legs have been shortened and tucked up under the body, in theory,  to make the body fit into the casket.  This resident is referred to as “the crusader” due to his size.  One of his hands is slightly raised, and in the past visitors were invited to shake his hand – that invitation no longer exists.

As the old Irish saying goes….

“May your glass be ever full.
May the roof over your head be always strong.
And may you be in heaven half an hour before the devil knows you’re dead”

Thanks for reading!

 

 

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. donna
    Oct 08, 2016 @ 19:15:40

    WOW! There is so much to be discovered and you never disappoint when sharing your addiction Thank you!

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  2. Laura Esposito
    Oct 07, 2016 @ 21:09:41

    Jeannie, thank you so much for your posts. I share your love of travel, ad you know, and love seeing your travels through your eyes. I have the means now to travel and go wherever I want but fear for the world today. Plz let me know when you get home so we can get together. Safe travels, my friend

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