Thursday, 6 July 2017

Moira Castle

Photo credit: Royal Irish Academy © RIA

Here is a rare painting of Moira Castle in County Down, former seat of the Rawdons, Earls of Moira

Moira Castle, as described by Burke's, was
a large, three-storey, 18th century house with a nine-bay front, consisting of a five-bay centre and a two-bay extension, slightly higher than the centre, on either side.

Only the roof of the centre section was visible: The roofs of the side bays were either flat, or concealed by the massive cornices with which these bays were surmounted.

The mansion had a pedimented and rusticated doorway; curved end bows.

The front was prolonged by single-storey wings on either side, ending in piers with urns.
The Rawdons sold Moira Demesne to Sir Robert Bateson Bt in 1805 and moved to Montalto estate, near Ballynahinch, in the same county.

It is thought that Moira Castle was demolished ca 1870.

The water-colour above is by Gabriel Beranger (1729-1817).

Beranger was born in 1729 at Rotterdam, in the Netherlands.

He moved to Dublin in 1750 to join other family members.

In 1756, he married his cousin Louise Beranger (d 1782), and shortly afterwards opened a print shop at St Stephen's Green.
Beranger became acquainted with several members of Dublin society who were then taking a great interest in Irish history and antiquities. In 1773 he and his antiquarian friends made the first of their tours through Ireland.
Beranger's wife died in April, 1782, and in June of that year, he married Elizabeth Mestayer.

In the early 1780s, he obtained a job as assistant ledger-keeper in the exchequer office.

In later years his circumstances were eased after he inherited part of a fortune amassed in India by his brother-in-law, Colonel Mestayer.

Gabriel Beranger died at a house in St Stephen's Green in 1817.

First published in March, 2011.

1 comment :

Irish Aesthete said...

Moira House on Ussher's Quay in Dublin was the Rawdon family's townhouse and one of the most splendid mansions in the city; sold to the Mendacity Institution in 1824 it survived, albeit much altered, until the 1950s when the site was cleared. Only the entrance gateposts now remain as a memento mori...