This evening in one of the world’s great spaces, the Long Room in Trinity College, Dublin, the Provost, Dr Patrick Prendergast, launched a new exhibition showcasing the impact of the Gwynn family on TCD. The Gwynns were also enormously important in the life of St Columba’s too, and this connection is frequently made in the exhibition. The Warden and the Sub-Warden represented the College at the launch.
Of course, the impact of the family is marked here by the naming of Gwynn House. Three particularly significant figures were Provost of TCD E.J. Gwynn (also a Fellow of SCC), Reverend R.M. Gwynn (twice Acting Warden and so much else, including being a founder of the Old Columban Society – he is buried in nearby Whitechurch graveyard) and their father John Gwynn, Warden. Their talented brothers Stephen, Charles, Arthur and Lucius (the latter two died tragically early after stellar sporting careers, and there is a memorial plaque to Lucius in the Chapel) were also Columbans.
In launching the exhibition, Dr Prendergast thanked the Gwynn family for their generosity, and their stewardship of the documents. He said that the exhibition showed how deep the Gwynn family’s connections were with significant events in Irish history.
The Gwynn family feature a lot in the book produced last year by the Sub-Warden, Floreat Columba: 100 years of The Columban magazine, 1879-1979. Also, in 2017 Siobhán Tulloch, who spoke at the launch about the origins of the gathering of the documents and photographs which the Gwynn family has presented to TCD, sent us these evocative photographs of the College in the 1920s.
There is an excellent account of the new exhibition on the TCD site here, with plenty of photographs.