Life in the Country House in Georgian Ireland Patricia McCarthy

Publication date:
28 May 2019
Paul Mellon Centre
272 pages: 248 x 216mm
132 color + 65 b-w illus.
Sales territories:

A deft interweaving of architectural and social history

For aristocrats and gentry in 18th-century Ireland, the townhouses and country estates they resided in were carefully constructed to accommodate their cultivated lifestyles. Based on new research from Irish national collections and correspondence culled from papers in private keeping, this publication provides a vivid and engaging look at the various ways in which families tailored their homes to their personal needs and preferences. Halls were designed in order to simultaneously support a variety of activities, including dining, music, and games, while closed porches allowed visitors to arrive fully protected from the country’s harsh weather. These grand houses were arranged in accordance with their residents’ daily procedures, demonstrating a distinction between public and private spaces, and even keeping in mind the roles and arrangements of the servants in their purposeful layouts. With careful consideration given to both the practicality of everyday routine and the occasional special event, this book illustrates how the lives and residential structures of these aristocrats were inextricably woven together.  

Patricia McCarthy is an independent architectural historian based in Dublin.

"[This study] was well worth the wait and can be thoroughly recommended." — Malcolm Airs, Transactions of the Ancient Monuments Society

“McCarthy’s writing style...affords the reader with a fluid and informative lesson in how it may have been to reside in the Irish country house in Georgian times.”—Elaine Byrne, SPAB of the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings