As the funeral carriages roll up Great Brunswick Street in Hades,
they go "past the bleak pulpit of saint Mark's,"
a Church of Ireland parish church on Mark Street, just west of
Concert Rooms. The strangeness of being able to see the
pulpit from the street is explained by the fact that in 1893
an outdoor pulpit was erected in the graveyard between the two
buildings. It was destroyed by a great windstorm in
St. Mark's was built in the middle of the 18th century. By
the middle of the 19th it was in poor condition and surrounded
by a high wall which blocked all views of the grounds. In a
page on James Joyce Online Notes John Simpson tells
the story of how Edmond Robinson, a new vicar hired by the
church in 1890, set about restoring the interior of the church
and improving the grounds outside it. In 1892-93 the
delapidated wall was torn down and replaced with railings, the
grounds were leveled and replanted, and an open-air pulpit was
erected in the southeast corner of the graveyard. These
changes improved the exterior appearance of the church and
also allowed for open-air preaching, Robinson being active in
an organization called the Open-Air Mission for Ireland.
In November 1899, however, a huge gale took down trees in the area and snapped the pedestal of the pulpit, leaving only a bare foundation. Reverend Robinson continued open-air meetings on the site until 1900, but then left for another church. In 1971 the Church of Ireland decommissioned the building, which is now a Pentecostal church.