The Morpeth Roll.

By Christopher Ridgway

Printed: 2013

Publisher: Four Courts Press. Dublin

Edition: First Edition

Dimensions 16 × 24 × 1 cm

Language: English

Size (cminches): 16 x 24 x 1

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Item information


Softback. Glossy green cover with title and picture of the Morpeth roll on the front cover.

F.B.A. provides an in-depth photographic presentation of this item to stimulate your feel and touch. More traditional book descriptions are immediately available.


A very well produced book

In 1841, on stepping down as chief secretary, George Howard, Lord Morpeth, received a grand farewell testimonial from the people of Ireland. This took the form of 200,000 signatures on sheets of paper wrapped around a gigantic bobbin; when unwound, the testimonial measures a staggering 420 meters. This book of essays discusses the significance of the roll, and examines what it can tell us about pre-Famine Ireland.

After decades of lying-in obscurity in Castle Howard, North Yorkshire, the Morpeth Roll has been the subject of intense research, digitization and conservation. It is now being seen in public for the first time in 170 years as part of a touring exhibition throughout Ireland. The project is a unique and exciting collaboration between Castle Howard, NUI Maynooth and

This lavishly illustrated book of essays discusses the significance of the roll, and examines what it can tell us about pre-Famine Ireland. Just how the roll was commissioned and assembled in a matter of weeks, with signatures collected from across Ireland, is one focus of enquiry; as are the reasons for Morpeth’s extraordinary popularity, which endured when he returned to Dublin as viceroy in the 1850s. The roll is not only a document of national significance, but also a unique mechanical object, presenting very special challenges for display and interpretation.

Christopher Ridgway is curator of Castle Howard in Yorkshire and has written and lectured widely on its architecture, gardens and collections.

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