Burning the Country House Online Lecture Series

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A series of lectures hosted by the Centre for the Study of Historic Irish houses and Estates, History Department, Maynooth University.

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The lecture series is supported by the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media under the Historical Strand of the Decade of Centenaries Programme. These talks run in tandem with the exhibition Burning the Big House: The Story of the Irish Country House in Revolution, 1920-23, curated by Professor Terence Dooley and hosted by the Irish Architectural Archives from 21 March to 29 April 2022, and Maynooth University Library in May 2022.

Tickets to attend the lecture series are FREE but those wishing to make a donation to the CSHIHE research programme can do so by selecting the donation option when registering for your ticket. Thank you for your support.


Two lectures will be delivered live: the inaugural lecture by Terence Dooley on 24 March 2022 and the last in the series by Christopher Ridgway on 19 May 2022. The remaining six lectures will be pre-recorded and aired according to the following schedule.

Terence Dooley Burning the Big House: the story of the country house during the Irish Revolution, 1920-23

Ann O’Riordan Revolution, agrarianism and the burning of Ballydugan House, Co Galway, 1922

Jean YoungA barbarous mania of incendiarism’: house burnings in Co Louth, 1921-23

Ciarán ReillyA smouldering mass of charred stones’: The burning of country houses in Offaly, 1920-1923

Gemma Clark Munster’s ‘Campaign of Fire’: Big House burnings in Counties Limerick, Tipperary and Waterford, 1922–23

Glascott SymesOurs must go in time’: the burning of Sir John Keane’s Cappoquin House, Co Waterford

Robert O’Byrne The ruined Irish country house: reality and perception

Olwen PurdueSuch troubled times’: the burning of big houses in Northern Ireland 1921-1981

Christopher Ridgway Ablaze! Fire and the country house: a perspective beyond Ireland

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