Last week, I walked past the dog water trough and thought – ‘I had forgotten about that’.
Yesterday I was leafing through Tom Spalding’s book in the library and noted the paragraph below.
Last night, I was in Henchy’s Bar at St. Luke’s Cross and noted framed pictures of Seamus Murphy – one of him actually in Henchy’s.
I hadn’t planned doing a blog on the word ‘Madrai’ or on Seamus Murphy but the extent of coincidences compelled it.
“Seamus Murphy R.H.A.
Seamus Murphy (1907 – 1975) is easily the best-known Cork sculptor of the 20th Century. He is responsible for much public sculpture throughout the city, as well as the design of Blackpool Church. Apart for the main works he undertook private commissions. One of these is a notable, but generally overlooked, drinking trough set into the base of the shopfront of 124 St. Patrick’s Street. This little limestone trough was commissioned during the 1950s by Mr Knolly Stokes, owner of the Old Bridge Restaurant. Mr Stokes was a dog lover and arranged for a staff member to clean and re-fill the drinking trough each morning. It is said that he asked Murphy whether all of his dog-owning customers would understand the Irish for ‘dogs’, so crisply carved into it. Murphy is reputed to have said that whether the owners were bilingual or not, he was sure the dogs would be able to cope with Gaelige. After the restaurant was sold in the 1970s, Mr Stokes stipulated that the trough become the property of Cork Corporation, but sadly, no one now fills the trough with drinking water for the doggy denizens of the city.”
Cork City A Field Guide to its Street Furniture – Tom Spalding (available Liam Russell’s)