List of cathedrals in Ireland

This article lists the cathedrals, former cathedrals and intended cathedrals in Ireland.


It is a commonly held perception that the term 'cathedral' may be applied to any particularly large or grand church. Whilst many cathedrals may be such, this is due to their ecclesiastical status (such a church is grand because it is a cathedral, rather than it being a cathedral because of its grandeur). A cathedral may therefore be a smaller building, particularly where they exist in sparser or poorer communities. Modern cathedrals may lack the grandeur of former times, focussing on the functional aspect of a place of worship, though it should be borne in mind that many of the grand and ancient cathedrals of today were originally built to a much smaller plan, and have been successively extended and rebuilt over the centuries. Some cathedrals were purpose-built as such, whilst others were formerly parochial, or parish churches, subsequently promoted in status due to ecclesiastical requirements such as periodic diocesan reorganisation.

Essentially, a cathedral church is a Christian place of worship which is the chief, or 'mother' church of a diocese and is distinguished as such by being the location for the "cathedra" or bishop's seat. Strictly speaking therefore, only those Christian denominations with an episcopal hierarchy possess cathedrals. However the label 'cathedral' remains in common parlance for notable churches which were formerly part of an episcopal denomination, such as is the case with many former Scottish cathedrals which are now within the Presbyterian Church of Scotland (see List of cathedrals in the United Kingdom). In addition former cathedrals which now exist as ruins retain their nominal status.

The following list comprises, the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, all locations of a current cathedral church, or former cathedral church, as well as those locations where no trace remains of the structure, indeed where the precise location is no longer known.

Also included are those structures or sites of intended cathedrals as well as pro-cathedrals (churches serving as an interim cathedral, for instance whilst a permanent cathedral is acquired, or (as a co-cathedral where the diocesan demographics/geography require the bishop's seat to be shared with a building in an alternate location).

The inclusion of the entire island of Ireland is strictly for ecclesiastical reasons. Northern Ireland is represented because, although it politically comprises part of the United Kingdom, ecclesiastically the island comprises a single geographically-based unit.

In the list which follows the cathedrals are listed by denomination and (where applicable) denominational hierarchy. Disused establishments are listed separately.

Terms not covered in the above preamble include "translated", which is the move of a bishop's seat from one location to another, moving cathedral status from the former church and bestowing it on the destination church, such as may occur in a diocesan or provincial re-organisation.

Abbreviations and Key

* + "indicates non-cathedral ecclesiastical use".
* NM = "National Monument".

Listing of establishments

Roman Catholic Church

Province of Armagh

Province of Tuam

Former and intended cathedrals

ee also

*List of cathedrals in the United Kingdom
*List of English cathedrals
*List of abbeys and priories
*Abbeys and priories in the Republic of Ireland
*Abbeys and priories in Scotland
*Abbeys and priories in Wales
*Abbeys and priories in England
*Abbeys and priories in Isle of Man
*Abbeys and priories in Northern Ireland
*List of monasteries dissolved by Henry VIII of England
*Dissolution of the Monasteries

External links

* [ List of Cathedrals in Ireland and Great Britain] by Giga-Catholic Information

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