Brian Boroimhe house

In Brief

Just north of the Crossguns bridge, at 1 Prospect Terrace, the funeral carriages pass a pub called the "Brian Boroimhe house," named after the great Irish leader Brian Boru (Boroimhe), who reigned as High King from 1002 and whose army defeated the Danes at Clontarf in 1014. They are now in the suburb of Glasnevin, the home of the Prospect Cemetery, and Bloom thinks, "Near it now."

Read More

Gifford, reading Thom's directory, lists the owner in 1904 as "J. M. Ryan, proprietor and family grocer, tea, wine, and spirit merchant." The front of the Brian Boroimhe still boasts these assorted businesses, as can be seen in the accompanying photograph. Gareth Collins explains that 19th century public houses responded to plummeting sales caused by the temperance movement by diversifying into groceries, hardware, even undertaking: "They sold food etc. at the front, while at the back it was the public house for wines and spirits. They were known as spirit grocers. This no longer happens due to retail competition, although a lot of the old pubs still say grocers or spirit merchants or wine merchants above the door."

JH 2015
The Brian Boru House today. Source: Gareth Collins.