two curious items of Dublin trivia

1) The great philosopher, Wittgenstein, used to live in Dublin! He spent time in Galways and in Dublin and while in the city was apparently a great fan of the Botanic Garden. There's a totally sweet sign on a step in one of their (fabulous) hothouses, saying something like "Ludwig Wittgenstein used to sit here and think".

It's easy to imagine a cold, chilly philosopher living in a boarding house or something enjoying the steamy tropical heat!

2) Near the top of O'Connell Street, there's a curious signpost indicating the grave of a certain Matt Talbot.

"Who is this Matt Talbot?" I asked myself. The answer (thank you, Wikipedia) is that he was "an Irish ascetic who is revered by many Catholics for his piety, charity and mortification of the flesh."

Gosh, it's a sad little story.

I'll be back soon with more tales from the enigma that is Dublin...


Yes, there's a plaque on the Ashling Hotel up near Heuston station saying Wittgenstein stayed there, here's more:


Gosh, at the Ashling Hotel? Never struck me as a very philosophical joint! Still, I guess it may have changed over the years...


There is a very funny episode of Father Ted which refers to a fictional holy man named Mattie Hyslop, which I think is a reference to religious aesetics like Matt Talbot. So in the episode,Mattie Hyslop was a reformed ne'er-do-well who saw the light and created his own catholic cult based on masochism and self-abasement. Chronically allergic to cats, he used to carry a kitten in his pocket and from time to time take it out and sniff it.



LOL, I love Father Ted. It's great the way the Irish can laugh at themselves.


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