Contemporary depictions of the Irish saints

Over the course of my research I have come across many  modern depictions of the Irish saints. These statues are in stark contrast to the more formal  religious statues dating to the 19th/early 20th century and in most cases portray with more human qualities. This post highlights a few of my favorites.

Saint Brigid

Limestone Statue of St. Brigid at  St Brigid’s holy well Mullingar Co Westmeath. I think this is my favorite representation of the saint.

St Gobnait

Seamus Murphy statue of St Gobnait at Ballyvourney Co Cork.  Gobnait was also the patron saint of bee keepers and kept her own bees.  There are a number of  legend  in which she unleashes her bees to attack enemies. The statue incorporates a number of bees at its base to represent this tradition.

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Statue of St Gobnait at Ballyvourney Co Cork

Another very lovely depiction of the saint is found at Tober Ghobnait/St Gobnait’s well  Dún Chaoin/ Dunquin Co Kerry, where a bust St Gobnait carved by the artist Cliodhna Cussen is incorporated into the wall of the  holy well.

 

St Flannan

Carving of St Flannan  set into well house at St Flannan’s holy well, Inagh, Co Clare.

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Carving of St Flannan set into well house at St Flannan’s holy well, Inagh, Co Clare.

 

Carving of St Flannan’s head at the holy well at Kilaspuglonane Co Clare.

 

St Fanahan

Statue of St Fanahan at St Fanahan’s  well holy  Mitchelstown Co Cork. The saint is standing over an eel, local folklore state an eel resides in the well and if you are fortune to catch a glimpse you will be healed.

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Statue of St Fanahan, at St Fanahan’s well holy Mitchelstown Co Cork.

 

St Patrick

Statue of St Patrick’s at St Patrick’s holy well at Glassely Co Kildare.

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Our Lady

Seamus Murphy carving of the Madonna and child inspired by the medieval plaque of Our Lady of Graces at Abbey Street Youghal Co Cork.

4.1B Seamus Murphy's statue in Yougal inspired by Our Lady of Graces

Seamus Murphy carving of the Madonna and child inspired by the medieval plaque of Our Lady of Graces.

 

5 comments on “Contemporary depictions of the Irish saints

  1. Mary Grasso says:

    I so love this blog…thank you a thousand times over for all the terrific information and pictures!

  2. Brian Phelan says:

    Great post. I like Seamus Murphy’s work

  3. Finola says:

    St Fanahan is my favourite!

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