You’ll recall that this rather long travel series began with Ursula and I flying to Dublin, which was our first stop on an adventure that would eventually take us to Amsterdam to catch cruise ship that would wind up taking us right back to Ireland before going transatlantic. We spent most of Day 1 in Dublin hitting the Hop-On/Hop-Off. Day 2 found us going back to specific Dublin sights, such as St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Trinity College Dublin. Day 3 started our journey into the Irish countryside, and our first photo stop on this tour was the Cliffs of Moher.
The Cliffs are themselves dramatic, but the area’s other claim to fame is that it is home to diverse flora and fauna, including 35 species of birds:
As you can see, pre-pandemic the Cliffs of Moher was quite the attraction:
In the distance to the right is a stone tower constructed in 1835. This is O’Brien’s Tower, and it was built specifically as a lookout for visitors to the cliffs:
So, let’s soak up the views and take in the crowds:
The Book of Kells dates back to late 8th to early 9th century. It may have originated in Kells, or perhaps any of several places with the British Isles. The accepted theory is that the book at least began life in a Columban monastery on Iona and was completed at the Abbey of Kells.
So, what exactly is an “illuminated” manuscript? No; it’s not one that is bathed in light from a manmade source. In this case illuminated means the work is highly decorative, with stylized drop caps, decorative borders, and miniature illustrations, all done in bright colors and with gold and silver leaf. Take a look at this for examples:
The Book of Kells is quite the wonder. But so, too, is the library which houses it today. This is the incredible Library of Trinity College, specifically, the Old Library completed in 1732. The most impressive, and iconic, view is of the Long Room:
Busts of historic authors and philosophers are contained throughout the Long Room:
Here are the busts of Greek philosopher Plato and his teacher Socrates: