Survey Data

Reg No

50100420


Rating

Regional


Categories of Special Interest

Architectural, Artistic


Original Use

House


In Use As

Office


Date

1785 - 1795


Coordinates

316633, 233461


Date Recorded

03/07/2016


Date Updated

--/--/--


Description

Attached three-bay four-storey former house over basement, built c. 1790 apparently as one in terrace of seventeen, having bow to western two bays of rear elevation, and two-storey return to third bay with further storey to north end. Now in use as offices. Pitched slate roof to front, hipped to east end, behind brick parapet with granite coping, and two hipped roofs to rear perpendicular to street, larger over bow. Shouldered brick chimneystacks to west with clay pots. Hipped slate roof to return. Flemish bond red brick walls with granite plinth course over painted rendered walls to basement. Square-headed window openings, diminishing in height to upper floors, with rendered reveals and painted granite sills; carved granite block-and-start surrounds and recent steel grilles to basement. Timber sliding sash windows, front elevation having replacement one-over-one pane windows; rear elevation having older tripartite windows, three-over-three pane to top floor and six-over-six pane to lower floors. Wrought-iron window-guards to second and third floors of front. Round-headed principal doorway with rendered linings, fluted frieze and cornice, engaged Ionic columns framing pointed-headed decorative geometrically glazed sidelights, leaded petal fanlight, and eleven-panel timber door with brass furniture. Granite platform with cast-iron boot-scrape and five granite steps. Wrought-iron railings enclosing basement area with decorative cast-iron posts on carved granite plinth. Cast-iron coal-hole covers set in granite flags to footpath. carparking to rear, with concrete block wall to Fitzwilliam Lane.

Appraisal

No. 68 Merrion Square is an elegant Georgian house that forms part of the eighteenth-century square developed by the Fitzwilliam Estate. It has a fine Ionic doorcase with a delicate leaded fanlight and sidelights that adds artistic detailing to the otherwise restrained fa├žade. The railings also provide visual and craft interest. The building and its intact setting details contribute significantly to the intact appearance of this important architectural set-piece. The square is one of the best-preserved Georgian streetscapes in Ireland. The north, east and south sides are lined with terraced houses of eighteenth and early nineteenth-century date, while the west side is terminated by the garden front of Leinster House. The houses maintain a relatively uniform building height and design, attributed to standards promoted in Fitzwilliam's leases. Individuality was introduced through the design of doorcases, window ironwork and interior decorative schemes. The south side of the square was initially set in large plots of twelve leases; plots were leased consecutively from east to west up until the row was completed in 1791.