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1732 – Long Room Library, Trinity College Dublin

Architect: Thomas Burgh



The old Library of Trinity College (old because of a newer neighbour built by Ahrends Burton Koralak) is Thomas Burgh’s masterpiece. A huge building, it originally towered over the university and city after its completion. Even today, surrounded by similarly scaled buildings, it is imposing and dominates the view of the university from Nassau Street.

The building has undergone two major adaptions. Originally the Library was placed on an open ground floor arcade whose purpose was to insulate the books from damp. This was filled in during the 19th century for more shelf space. The timber tunnel vaults that cap the library are not original, being added by Deane & Woodward in 1858-60. Originally the library had a high flat ceiling. Deane & Woodward were also responsible for the mansard roof.