Ireland’s Taj Mahal!

In Off the beaten track. on August 23, 2011 at 8:33 pm

This little limestone chapel is on the main street in the town of Carrick-on-Shannon, Co. Leitrim. It was built by Edward Costello as a tribute and a final resting place for his wife who died at the age of 46.

Mary Josephine Costello died in 1877. After her death she was embalmed, put to rest in an oak coffin lined with metal and left in the care of a local convent. Her widower set about building the church which was dedicated in April 1879.

After the consecration ceremony Mrs. Costello’s coffin was placed in a sunken space to the left of the entrance. It was covered with a specially made sheet of very thick glass which is still there, undamaged, and through which the plaque on the coffin lid and the aged wooden coffin are still visible.

Edward Costello died in 1891, his body was placed in a coffin similar to his beloved and placed to the right of the entrance.

Over the years more buildings have gone up around the little church. The natural light that would once have shone through this beautiful stained glass window is no more.

The recently cleaned tiles commerate the Stations of the Cross on the floor of this church which is the smallest in Europe. It is 16ft long, 12ft wide and 30ft high.  The building is known as The Costello Memorial Chapel. A little gem in the heart of lovely Leitrim.

  1. How gorgeous it is! Thanks for sharing Bridget!! xx

  2. Mrs Costello is a striking beauty. Who are these Costellos?

  3. ~Facinating and kind of weird, never head of that before, maybe meself and Paddy could give it go? The photos are great Bridget, full of atmosphere:~)

  4. Very interesting. A bit misterious…

  5. I too thought it strange to see through the coffin, but what a wonderful thing Edward did to preserve Mary’s memory. I enjoyed the chapel architecture too.

  6. How eerie to look through a window to the coffins. And why would they deteriorate so I wonder… I will have to get a map to follow your remarkable tours Bridget!

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