Cumann Seandalaiochta agus Staire Phort Lairge

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Upcoming Lecture 15 October 'A Reflection of Importance’ by Karen Hannon


A lecture by Karen Hannon to the Waterford Archaeological and Historical Society

The next lecture in our 2021 – 2022 lecture season on Friday October 15th will be at 8 pm in St Patrick’s Gateway Centre, Waterford when historian and genealogist Karen Hannon will deliver a talk titled ‘A Reflection of Importance’ – A Study of the Memorial Stained Glass Windows of Co. Waterford.

Almost every parish on the island of Ireland, and in the county of Waterford, is home to a memorial stained-glass window.  So often neglected, observed but not truly seen, it would be easy to regard these stained-glass monuments as nothing more than colourful biblical allegories displayed to give inspiration to the devout. But this would oversimplify their role and value as a local history resource. In her talk Karen Hannon will give an overview of the history of stained glass in Ireland and why it was the most highly prized ecclesiastical art form for much of the nineteenth and twentieth century.  She will consider this history through several Waterford case studies examining not only the windows and their designers, but the local families who donated these windows, hoping to shed some light on why these windows were commissioned and by whom?

Other questions that Karen will address include whether stained glass memorial windows were a declaration of importance by families establishing their standing in their parish?  Were they displays of religious commitment by the devout?  Or were they simply an insurance against the finality of death by those wishing to not be forgotten? Karen’s research has shown that the answers to these questions are as varied as the windows themselves, and in the lecture she will reflect on both the craftsmen, the studios and the patrons of these captivating decorative artworks demonstrating both the artistic value of these stained glass windows and their significance for social history.

Karen Hannon is a Waterford historian and genealogist, she has been awarded a BA in History and Diploma in Genealogy by University College Cork.

As usual, the lecture will be at 8 pm in St Patrick’s Gateway Centre, Waterford. Please note that due to current public health restrictions capacity of the lecture venue is limited to 50%, unfortunately WAHS cannot guarantee admittance.

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