Tuesday, 20 December 2011

The Irish Presidency's new chair

After years of using the vice-regal throne (left) that once sat in Saint Patrick's Hall of Dublin Castle, Ireland's presidency has elected to commission a new chair (right) for the presidential swearing-in, claiming that the old chair, which was used by the Viceroy of Ireland during the days before Partition, is in a state of disrepair. As Andrew Cusack muses on his blog, it seems a shame to let the old chair fall out of use, given that a good furniture repair expert must have been available?

The chair of the Viceroy and his consort, the vicereine, were shorn of their British royal arms at the time of Partition; the vicereine's chair was sent over to the Sinead Eireann, the upper house of the Irish bicameral parliamentary system, to be used as the seat of its presiding officer, the Cathaoirleach. The viceroy's chair, which became the president's chair, also had its original fabric (below, which included the shamrock and symbols of the monarchy) stripped away in the 1930s, in favour of something more simple and republican.

The conservative blog of Andrew Cusack laments the retirement of the old chair and reflects on its past history.

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