Dublin City Through The Lens Of A Sigma DP1
On the left hand side is the Bank Of Ireland, College Green (not, as many believe, the Central Bank)
This was the first purpose built Parliament House in the world and was constructed at a great time of public confidence in Dublin. The original building designed by Pearce (outlined in black below) was constructed between 1729 and 1739 is only part of the existing structure. This consisted of the central section with its huge colonnades. Pearce was actually knighted in the building on the 10 March 1731.
The Parliament of the eighteenth century was largely controlled by the wealthy ascendancy. On the 2nd August 1800 the parliament was persuaded to vote itself out of existence through the Act of Union. Many wealthy landlords and members of the Irish aristocracy were persuaded by promises of titles and honours from London. With the Act of Union the centre of power shifted to London and with it the desire for improvements to Dublin as many of the ascendancy moved to London when not living on their country estates.
After this, Dublin began its slow slide into disrepair with the famous Gardiner Estate going bankrupt and the decay of many of the glorious Georgian streets as the houses were split up into tenements. The Parliament building was sold to the Bank of Ireland under the condition that it should not be used for political assemblies.
The Parliament consisted of two houses, the House of Commons and the House of Lords. The Commons is now the banking hall while the Lords remains intact. The interiors designed by Pearce exist intact except for the original Commons which was destroyed by a fire.