Trinity College, Dublin: 1592-1992

Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland celebrates its 400th anniversary in 1992. John McGurk discusses the history of the college, set up for the cultivation of virtue and religion.

Trinity, Dublin was a highly precarious Elizabethan foundation. Born in an age of military conquest, of ideological conflict, in the midst of 'plotts and plans' to reform the native Irish to English Renaissance 'civility'" it was slow to emerge as part of that process. Long before the foundation charter was granted there had been pressure on the Irish Council in Dublin to create a university in a city which was rapidly growing into the military, civil, commercial and legal centre of English influence in Ireland. By the 1590s Dublin was a city of merchants, mariners, soldiers, divines, and above all of lawyers; from its origins Trinity College would reflect the social mix and historic development of the eventual capital of Ireland.

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