Thursday Doors

Continuing on from last week’s Thursday Doors in Dublin, I have a question for you. What do vampires and Stephen’s Green have in common? Why should I be reminded of something that scared the life out of me in my teens – even in a black and white movie – on such a lovely sunny day? Okay, that was two questions. While you ponder over them, walk with me through the Fusiliers Arch that leads into the park.

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Apparently modeled on the Arch of Titus in Rome, it was erected in 1907 and is dedicated to the men of the Royal Dublin Fusiliers who fought and died in the Second Boer War (1899-1902). The names of 222 of them are inscribed on the underside of the arch.  Inside the park, spring flowers were in bloom everywhere and the grass was even dry enough to sit on. Click on any photo to view a larger image.

There are lots of monuments throughout Stephen’s Green park and one of them is the Famine Memorial by Irish sculptor Edward Delaney (1930–2009).

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By now you must be wondering why on earth I mentioned vampires. Have a look at the next photograph, the Top Shop building in particular (with the horse and carriage standing in front of it).

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In 1877, Bram Stoker (author of Dracula) lived above the shop at number 7, Stephen’s Green. It wasn’t a high street fashion store in his day, but a grocery and wine shop. Not too far away stands the Shelbourne Hotel, where in 1876 Bram Stoker and Henry Irving began a lifelong friendship. Irving was an English stage actor in Victorian times and is widely acknowledged to be one of the inspirations for Count Dracula. He was the first actor to be awarded a knighthood. You can see from the old photograph below how little Stoker’s old residence has changed. It’s on the left of the image. There was even a horse and carriage parked outside back then.

Image from Bram Stoker Estate website.

Follow the link if you would like to find out more about Bram Stoker’s Dublin

Thank you for your company on this stroll around Stephen’s Green. If you carry on over to Norm’s blog you’ll find another fine selection of Thursday Doors with a link at the end of his post that will transport you to various parts of the globe.

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About Jean Reinhardt

Author of 'A Pocket Full of Shells' an Amazon International best seller, Jean writes young adult and historical fiction. She has been known to shed a tear over Little House on the Prairie.
This entry was posted in Historical buildings, History, Ireland, nature, Thursday Doors, Travel, victorian ireland, writers and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

36 Responses to Thursday Doors

  1. Dan Antion says:

    Great post Jean! I love the way you weaved this together. And. by the way, horror movies were way more scary in black and white and before the days of computer generated effects.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. JT Twissel says:

    I had read that Stoker’s model for Dracula was an actor! Somehow makes sense. Fun to see where he lived. Thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Norm 2.0 says:

    I learn new things here every Thursday Jean. Thank you for that 🙂
    Except for perhaps re-doing the brickwork the facade of that building has changed very little.
    I’m also very jealous of your lush green grass. The snow is finally melting here but I still can’t see our lawn yet.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Jay says:

    Beautiful photos AND a cool history lesson – thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. jesh stg says:

    So much to see here, Jean! Love your captures of the Steven Green park with all the spring flowers blooming! Had to smile when you started talking about Bram Stoker. Hubby gets often asked if he is a relative of Bram, because of the last name:) How shall I put it: happily not:) Will come back later to really read you whole post and the sources you gave. Have a great day, blog friend.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Joanne Sisco says:

    Spring is in full bloom there. Lovely photos!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Lovely park, Jean. I was wondering about the vampire connection. I’m not a big fan of horror movies. There are enough frightening things in the world and I think the envelope in many genres get pushed much too far these days. Scary movies also wouldn’t be nearly as scary without the music!

    janet

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Pistachios says:

    Haha what a fun post! I kept looking between the “now” and “then” photos of Bram Stoker’s former residence to spot all the differences. It’s great that they’ve kept the original building, and the horses & carriages 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Mel & Suan says:

    Yet another new thing we learned today. Did not know Bram Stoker lived in Dublin and was Irish!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. msgt3227 says:

    I love this post, Jean! The history and comparative photos are fantastic! Have never been a fan of horror movies, but mis-spent my youth reading the classic horror stories… 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  11. jesh stg says:

    I just occurred to me I would look at the page of Bram Stoker. If I compare the features of Bram;s face on the photograph as well as the sketch in the sidebar, they are opposite of what hubby’s dad looked -who had a narrow long nose, no cheek and a small chin – B. Stoker’s is opposite. So, it seems clear – no relation. .What puzzles me is that the name Stoker is not common at all in all of Holland. Anyways, it was interesting to check it out. Thanks for providing the resources:):)

    Liked by 1 person

    • I did a search on the name and came up with this, Jesh: English: habitational name for someone from any of the numerous places called Stoke. Dutch: occupational name for a stoker, Middle Dutch stokere, or from the same word in the sense ‘fire raiser’, ‘arsonist’. Scottish: occupational name for a trumpeter, Gaelic stocaire, an agent derivative of stoc ‘Gaelic trumpet’.

      Like

  12. Jennie says:

    This is a great post, Jean. I still get creeped out by Anthony Hopkins, due to the movie Psycho. Then there was my not so bright idea to watch the original Christmas Carol as a family with our young children. What was I thinking? Black and white is still scarier.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. aj vosse says:

    I’m sure you know the Arch goes by another name too! I’ve posted about that angle before.
    https://ouchmybackhurts.wordpress.com/2015/03/04/day-3-5-day-bw-challenge-links-past-and-present/
    I’m a South African of Afrikaans descent so I can sympathise with folk who go by that name! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • I was going to refer to it in my blog but as my husband’s granduncle was a Dublin Fusilier, who died of a gas attack in the trenches of Hulluch during ww1 (April 29 1916 as the Easter Rising was taking place near his home in Dublin) I decided to leave out the reference. It’s very discomforting when you look back and can see both sides of it. War is a dirty, messy business, isn’t it?

      Liked by 1 person

      • aj vosse says:

        Indeed… so messy, so vile. I saw action in SA, my forefathers fought and died in the Second Boer War but worse, the women, children and old folk who died in the concentration camps in that war! So sad!
        I have stood in the Somme WW1 graveyards and marvelled (and cried) at the Harp and Springbok emblems side by side…

        Liked by 1 person

        • It’s good that we don’t forget those men, women and children who lost their lives because of war, or whose lives were badly affected because of it. I’m reading this blog at the moment and it’s very enlightening. http://bit.ly/2nWbWaU Through the personal stories of soldiers and widows, it tells how the American Civil War affected the lives of Irish-Americans until well into the twentieth century.

          Like

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