Gatecrashing a Bar Meeting, 1830

As you can see from the illustrations above, Courts 1-4 as originally furnished included a handsome box (complete with coat-hooks and inkwells) specifically for the Press.

Pre-Law Library, the Courts were often used for Bar meetings and the Freeman’s Journal of 16 February 1830 contains an interesting account of one such meeting, held to discuss a threat by the magistrates of Bruff, County Limerick, to hold a Mr read more

Barrister’s Spouse Violated by Briefing Solicitor, 1842

From the Galway Vindicator and Connaught Advertiser, 20 April 1842:

Mr Robert Caldwell, a respectable attorney, was… charged with having… attempted by force to violate Anne Corbet, the wife of Mr Edward Lestrange Corbet, barrister.

Mrs Corbet… deposed that she met Mr Caldwell for the first time in Sept.1840…  Mr Caldwell then sent some law business to her husband, and he was invited to dine at their residence, in Fitzwilliam Street… she never gave him the least encouragement read more

The Hammond Lane Explosion, 1878

From the Freeman’s Journal, 29 April 1878:

“On Saturday afternoon Dublin was startled and horrified by one of the most appalling accidents which has ever taken place in this metropolis – an accident by which no less than fourteen fellow creatures have lost their lives, and by which a dreadful amount of suffering, sorrow, misery and bereavement has been caused.

The scene of this awful occurrence was Hammond-Lane, a narrow laneway situated in the poor and populous district read more

The Perils of Personal Service, 1834

From the Wexford Conservative, 7 May 1834:

“[A]n unfortunate man appeared in the hall of the Four Courts on Thursday with his face and head swollen inflamed and lacerated in a most shocking manner. His nose was literally flattened, and covered with dressing plaster and his hair and clothes were besmirched with blood, and his whole frame was agitated by a feverish tremor. Why the poor creature chose to exhibit his wretched condition instead of being in hospital is unaccountable, but read more

Do Not Covet a Barrister’s Wife, 1862

The Marshalsea, Dublin, 1860

From the Usk Observer, 19 July 1862:

“The Dublin papers announce the death of a person named Sterne, who had been imprisoned for debt in the Four Courts Marshalsea for 36 years. Mr Sterne was a gentleman of large fortune… a gentleman of fashion as well as a ‘fast’ man about town. The most remarkable event of his life was his elopement with a married lady of great respectability, the wife of an eminent barrister. This lady, who was young, pretty and well connected, read more

The Wandering Law Library Ventilator, 1879

From the Northern Whig, 4 July 1879:

“Today, about one o’clock, the glass dome, with heavy leaden ventilator in the centre of the Consultation Room, adjoining the Library in the Four Courts, fell in with a great smash, strewing the floor beneath with broken glass and smashed sashes. The ventilator, three feet high and more than one hundredweight,lay with the side battered in. the room is small, and fortunately at the moment of the accident there was no one under the glass roof, read more

Human Remains Beside the West Wing, 1834

From the Dublin Observer, 4 January 1834:

“Some workmen, employed in the course of the past week in sinking a sewer from the Four Courts to the river, in the course of their excavations discovered, at the depth of about two feet from the surface, and approaching the pallisading enclosing the upper yard from the flagway, a pavement in tolerably good preservation. On clearing this away, and sinking about 18 inches beneath it, they came on another pavement… About three feet under read more

Unacceptable Sanitary and Timekeeping Arrangements, 1874

From the Freeman’s Journal, 13 October 1874:

“The Barristers’ Library is a crying disgrace… Barristers “look up” their cases in the Library, and also use it as a “trysting place” for meeting Attorneys. The Library is a room utterly unfit for the purpose to which it is devoted. It is not half large enough to accommodate comfortably the number of men who use it. Its arrangements for air, light and ventilation are abominable. Not a single one read more

A Judicial Levee in a Haunted House, 1901

From the Belfast Newsletter, 15 April 1901:

“Tomorrow the Easter sittings in the High Court begin, and according to old time ceremonial, Easter marks the beginning of the legal as it does the Christian year. So the Lord Chancellor Lord Ashbourne holds a levee at his residence, 12 Merrion Square in his gorgeous robes of black and gold and all the majesty of a full-bottomed wig, receiving members of the Bar of Ireland and the principal officials of the courts… The exodus from the mansion read more

Young Bar Fracas, 1829

From the Belfast Newsletter, 6 November 1829:

“On Saturday morning, at four o’clock, Mr Scully, the barrister, accompanied by Mr Blake, of Galway, and his brother-in-law, Mr R. Browne, were taking oysters, in Duke Street, Dublin, and entered into conversation with the Rev. Mr Grady, Mr Armstrong and Mr C. Browne. The parties were not, at that time, known to each other.

The conversation turned upon the trial of Grady and Richards, when Mr Scully said that Mr O’Connell had read more