The Garden of Remembrance is a large sunken garden designed by Dáithí Hanly and it features a pool in the shape of a non-denominational cross designed to be inclusive of all religions, creeds or colors.
The floor of the cross is lined with mosaics of shattered swords and broken shields - echoing the rituals of ancient clans who would break their weapons at the end of battle and throw them into the rivers or large bodies of water to symbolize the end of a conflict.
The Garden of Remembrance commemorates all Irish uprisings and rebellions from 1798 through Ireland’s more recent “Troubles” of the 20th century. It also features a large statue created by Oisín Kelly of the Children of Lir that signifies rebirth and resurrection and is based on a famous Irish myth regarding the transformation of the daughters of king into swans by a jealous stepmother, their subsequent exile, and their symbolic return. It is built on the site of where the Irish Volunteers were founded in 1913 and it was unveiled in 1966, exactly fifty years after they joined the short-lived but effective rebellion known as the Easter Rising of 1916. It is a garden steeped in Nationalist history, and it is lined with harps and other symbols of the Irish Republican movement.
In May of 2011, Queen Elizabeth II laid a wreath in the Garden of Remembrance. This was a very controversial move that was heralded by the Irish media as further proof that the armed conflict between the two nations had come to an end.
Know Before You Go
The garden is free to enter, though the gates are open 9:30 am - 4 pm, (hours may vary on holidays).