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Irish Georgian Wine Cellars (Talk 7)

22.11.2022, 18:30 P.M.

‘An extremely well-furnished wine cellar’: the aim of every Georgian gentleman! by Dr Patricia McCarthy, independent scholar.

Abstract: This is how Francis Andrews, Provost of Trinity College, and builder of the Provosts’ House, described his own wine cellar in the 1760s. A lover of wine, particularly claret from Bordeaux, Hermitage and Champagne and, like many other eighteenth-century gentlemen, he never travelled without a well-stocked ‘mini-bar’ in his entourage. This talk, however, concerns itself with the domestic wine cellar in Irish houses of the period, how it was planned, arranged and used. We will look at the role of the supplier, the use of a cellar-book, the duties and importance of the butler and his handling of wine from cellar to table.

Patricia McCarthy is the author of Life in the Country House in Georgian Ireland (London & New Haven, 2016), the subject of her doctoral thesis at Trinity College Dublin, and of 'A favourite study’: building the King’s Inns (2006). She has published widely on 18th- and early 19th-century subjects in a number of books and in publications such as the Irish Arts Review, Country Life and Irish Architectural and Decorative Studies. Her recent book is Enjoying Claret in Georgian Ireland: a history of amiable excess (Four Courts Press, 2022).

Image: Gustave de Galard (1779-1841), Portrait of Germain Rambaud, Master of the Cellar at Barton & Guestier, Bordeaux for sixty years, 1755 to 1815. Image courtesy of Barton & Guestier.

Patricia McCarthy

Photo: Dr Patricia McCarthy.

This is the seventh talk in the Irish Georgian Society's autumn lecture series, Georgian Homes: material culture of the domestic interior in 18th century Ireland which explores the material culture of the Irish Georgian house, in both town and country, focusing on interior decoration, furniture and fine art. The talks will examine the manner in which these furnishings and decorations responded to the use of the interior spaces by their inhabitants; reveal the influences on their stylistic evolution; reflect on the province and economics of materials and manufacturing methods; and consider how the presentation of decorative finishes and objects in domestic settings acted as social signifiers of the inhabitants’ taste and status. The talks, which will examine the presentation and decoration of the homes of the elite and ‘middling’ sorts, will provide an overview of objects and collections that were designed and manufactured by native and foreign craftsmen and artisans, both in Ireland and abroad.

This lecture series forms an action of the Irish Georgian Society’s Conservation Education Programme, which is supported by the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage and The Heritage Council. The Irish Georgian Society wishes to acknowledge the sponsorship of Ecclesiastical Insurance.

For further architectural events in Ireland visit the Ireland Architecture Diary


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