Boy Racers on Arran Quay, 1834

The entry of a stray bull into the Round Hall in 1835 proved a one-off event. Livestock, in general, were not attracted to the Four Courts.

Carriages, on the other hand, were an entirely different matter, particularly when driven by intoxicated Dublin youth attracted to the long straight stretch of quay in front of the portico.

An account of one such incident is to be found in the Clonmel Herald of 10 December 1834:

“On Saturday, about three o’clock p.m., two coal porters in the last stage of intoxication got into a dray, and put the unfortunate horse that was drawing it into full gallop, at which pace they came along Arran-Quay, to the great terror of all who happened to be passing… at this furious rate they arrived opposite the Four Courts.

The further progress of these ruffians was arrested by the car having struck against the lamp post, when a number of gentlemen, barristers and solicitors, leaving court at that moment, very properly seized the offenders and detained them…”

A shocking story – not least because it records courts sitting for business on a Saturday! Good to see our 19th century predecessors triumphing over the hardship of a six day week to emerge as the heroes of the hour!

Author: Ruth Cannon BL

Irish barrister sharing the history of the Four Courts, Dublin, Ireland, and other Irish courts.

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