Sir Patrick Dun's Hospital

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Sir Patrick Dun's Hospital
Sir Patrick Dun's Hospital.JPG
Sir Patrick Dun's Hospital
Sir Patrick Dun's Hospital is located in Central Dublin
Sir Patrick Dun's Hospital
Shown in Dublin
LocationDublin, Ireland
Coordinates53°20′20″N 6°14′28″W / 53.338954°N 6.241174°W / 53.338954; -6.241174Coordinates: 53°20′20″N 6°14′28″W / 53.338954°N 6.241174°W / 53.338954; -6.241174
TypeGeneral Hospital

Sir Patrick Dun's Hospital (Irish: Ospidéal Sir Patrick Dun) was a hospital and school for physicians on Grand Canal Street, Dublin, Ireland.


Sir Patrick Dun, a prominent physician in Ireland, died in 1713, leaving income generating property in County Waterford in trust to the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland.[1] On 14 January 1788, due to a desire to have a School of Physic for clinical lectures, the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland set up a clinical hospital in a house on Clarendon Street.[2] This served its purpose until a report on 14 August 1790 showed that the costs were too high compared to other hospitals. On 8 November 1790 the hospital was closed and its equipment distributed to Mercer's Hospital and Dr Steevens' Hospital.[3]

On 9 July 1792 a house on Wellington Quay (previously Blind Quay) was leased by the College and it was opened as Sir Patrick Dun's Hospital, in memory of the College's benefactor, on 27 September 1792.[3] This address did not last very long, as on 16 February 1793 it is noted that the College appointed a Physician in Ordinary at Sir Patrick Dun's Hospital on Lower Exchange Street.[3] The hospital was initially kept open all year round, but later opened for only part of the year.[3]

The School of Physic Act 1800 entrusted eight commissioners to appropriate the £1,200 already given to the College for the provision of a hospital that was capable of holding thirty patients. The commissioners were the Sackville Hamilton, the Provost of Trinity College, the President of the College of Physicians, Sir Francis Hutchinson Baronet, the Hon George Knox, Dr Arthur Browne, William Digges La Touche and Abraham Wilkinson Esquires.[3] They chose the land at Grand Canal Street with a 998-year lease signed 10 May 1802.[3] By 1808, £6,346 of Sir Patrick Dun's funds had been spent building the west wing of the hospital, but it was not enough.[3] Parliamentary aid was sought and £6,204 was granted to finish the building of the hospital, furnish it and run it temporarily.[4] The design of the building, with its granite facade, is said to have been influenced by George Papworth.[5] It was completed 24 June 1808 and the hospital was handed over to the Board of Governors.[4] The school opened for clinical instruction on 25 October 1808.[4]

As well as providing clinical instruction for medical students Dun's Hospital also taught midwifery and trained army nurses. The first scientific nursing training in Ireland was introduced at the hospital by Margaret Huxley in the 1880s.[6] One of the earliest medical reports of the effects of X-rays can be found in a letter sent from one of the Hospital's assistant physicians to the British Medical Journal in 1896.[7]

After services transferred to St. James's Hospital, Sir Patrick Dun's Hospital closed in 1986.[8] The building was acquired by the Institute of Clinical Pharmacology later that year[9] but, since the mid-1990s, has been used by the superintendent registrar of births, deaths and marriages to host civil ceremonies.[10][11]

Notable people[edit]


  1. ^ Belcher, p. 60
  2. ^ Belcher, p. 73
  3. ^ a b c d e f g Belcher, p. 74
  4. ^ a b c Belcher, p. 75
  5. ^ McDermott, Matthew J. (1988). "Dublin's Architectural Development 1800-1925", Tulcamac, p141 ISBN 1-871212-01-4
  6. ^ McGann, Susan (2004). "Huxley, Margaret Rachel (1854–1940)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/50763. Retrieved 11 May 2019. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  7. ^ Drury, H. C. (7 November 1896). "Dermatitis caused by roentgen X rays". BMJ. British Medical Journal. 2 (1871): 1377–1378. doi:10.1136/bmj.2.1871.1377-a. PMC 2510914. PMID 20756568.
  8. ^ "Sir Patrick Dun's Hospital" (PDF). Royal College of Physicians of Ireland. p. 5. Retrieved 11 May 2019.
  9. ^ "Drug test stirs bitter memory". Irish News. 17 March 2006. Retrieved 11 May 2019.
  10. ^ "Dun deed for lovers in the boardroom of romance". Irish Times. 5 August 1998. Retrieved 11 May 2019.
  11. ^ "Dublin City Weddings". Wedding Photographers. Retrieved 11 May 2019.
  12. ^ Dublin Journal of Medical Science, Volume 139, Number 3 / March, 1915
  13. ^ Obituary, BMJ, 22 July 1933
  14. ^ Falkiner, C. L. (2004). "Smith, Aquilla (1806–1890)". In Legg, Marie-Louise (ed.). Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/25774. ISBN 978-0-19-861412-8. Retrieved 11 May 2019. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  15. ^ "A Profile of ANNE YOUNG Matron" (PDF). Contacts. July 1988. p. 13. Archived (PDF) from the original on 20 August 2021. Retrieved 20 August 2021.