St Mary's Cathedral, Kilkenny

Coordinates: 52°39′09″N 07°15′25″W / 52.65250°N 7.25694°W / 52.65250; -7.25694
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St Mary’s Cathedral
Cathedral Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
52°39′09″N 07°15′25″W / 52.65250°N 7.25694°W / 52.65250; -7.25694
LocationCounty Kilkenny
CountryRepublic of Ireland
DenominationRoman Catholic
FoundedFebruary 1842
Consecrated4 October 1857
Relics heldSt Victoria
Saint Clement
Saints Cosmas and Damian[1]
StyleGothic Revival
GroundbreakingApril 1843
Construction cost£25,000
DioceseDiocese of Ossory

St Mary's is the cathedral church of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Ossory. It is situated on James's Street, Kilkenny, Ireland.

Saint Mary's was designed by William Deane Butler (c.1794-1857). He was chosen by Bishop William Kinsella (1793-1845) who instigated the building of St. Mary's in February 1842. Work began in April 1843 and finished in 1857. On Sunday 4 October 1857, St. Mary's had its grand opening, which consisted of a two-and-three-quarter hour ceremony that began at 6.15am. The cost of the building is estimated to have been £25,000.

St. Mary's is made from cut-limestone which was sourced locally. The cathedral has a cruciform plan and its style is described as ‘Early English Gothic’.[2] The design is believed to have been based on Gloucester Cathedral in Gloucester, England. It is situated on the highest point in Kilkenny City and is a significant local landmark.

Its bell in the steeple was made by John Murphy, a Dublin foundry.[3]

St. Mary's has a noted sculpture of the Madonna by Giovanni Maria Benzoni (1809-1873).



  1. ^ "Strolling through the mediaeval capital of Ireland".
  2. ^ National Inventory of Architectural Heritage
  3. ^ "The crowning glory of St Mary's Cathedral". 13 August 2021.

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