St. Mary's Dominican Church
The classical style of St. Mary's Church is reminiscent of the Court House, but
both are by different architects. Kearns Deane gave his services free, although
he was not a catholic, and the church was begun in 1832. It was opened in 1839,
but the portico was not added until 1861. Arguably Cork's most beautiful church,
its six fluted Ionic columns support a pediment upon which rests a statue of Our
Lady by James Cahill of Dublin. Like the columns, the church is primarily of
white limestone but part further back is of sandstone.
Inside, sixteen fluted pillars line the nave and sanctuary. The four red pillars
of the altar are not marble but polished Aberdeen granite and each is a single
3.5m piece. On the altar is a 14th century statue credited with miraculous
properties. The 6 cm Our Lady of the Graces statue was made in Northern France
and is said to have floated in a log into Youghal in the 15th century. There it
remained until it was moved to St. Mary's.
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