Black Rock Castle, Cork

Artist(s) : Thomas Creswick (Draughtsman), Robert Brandard (Engraver)

View of Blackrock Castle, from the River Lee, in weak sunshine. The castle is on the right-hand side of the image, rising from the river bank. In the foreground, in a segment of apparently narrative art, a well dressed man is rowing a small boat carrying a cloaked and hooded woman, two children and personal effects. A large buoy floats nearby. Three sailing boats can be seen along the river, one travelling towards the group in the foreground.

Inscribed in Image

  • Signature – T. Creswick. / R. Brandard.
  • Caption outside of boundaries of image – Black Rock Castle, Cork.
  • Text outside of boundaries of image – Printed by Alfred Adlard.

Image Details

Genre Landscape
Technique Etchings
Subject(s) Antiquities and archaeological sites, Cities and towns, Forts and fortifications, Nature, Transportation
Geographical Location
  • Blackrock - Castle
  • Cork - Town or city
  • Cork - County
  • Munster - Province
Keywords(s) Archaeological sites, Boats, Castles, Children, Hats, Passengers, People, Rivers, Ships, Women
Colour Monochrome
Dimensions 10.3 cm x 11.2 cm
Published / created 1837

Bibliographical Details

Travel Account Ireland Picturesque and Romantic
Print or manuscript Print
Location of image in copy vol. 1, opp. p. 187
Source copy National Library of Ireland Ir 9141 r 15
Alternative source

This is a link to a digital copy hosted by an external website.
Rights Courtesy of the National Library of Ireland

Related text from travel account

Upon the whole, I think Cork, even in such quarters, is much cleaner and more comfortable than Dublin; and this I can say with the greater confidence, as I pried into every opening which had the appearance of a thoroughfare, and sometimes into places where, judging from the exclamations of the people, the quality (as they call every body whose hat has a crown to it, and whose coat is whole and clean) are unfrequent visitors.
But the river is the grand object of attraction at Cork; and, accordingly, on the morning of a very fine day, I set out in a steamer for the island of Cove. The Irish fine day is, in my opinion, the finest day in the world. It would be the most dis-agreeable of all days, a bright hot day— only it is [image: Black Rock Castle] [p. 187] not: for the light and heat are both deliciously mellowed by the water-clouds, which are between you and the sun. Were it not for this protection, I am sure that in my rambles among the Wicklow hills, during the whole of which time there was not a drop of rain, I should have gone to heaven by evaporation.
The irregular course of the estuary makes this little voyage extremely delightful; for, every now and then, a new picture, or a new combination, presents itself. On the left are ranged the variegated heights of Glenmire, covered with woods, and dotted with villas; on the right is a flatter country, but equally rich, terminating after some time with Black Rock Castle, standing out like a watch-tower. Of this part of the river a beautiful view is annexed, which, I beg leave to say, is also a beautiful view of the fine weather of Ireland. This peculiarity of sky and tone will be observed in almost all the engravings in the volume; and, indeed, it could not have escaped the quick eye, and delicate pencil, of Mr. Creswick.
Black Rock Castle is a very conspicuous object from many points of view, both in ascending and descending the river ; but the expectations of the stranger are disappointed on approaching it. Its air of authority vanishes by degrees; till at length, when just passing it, it becomes petite and nick-nackish. Although modernized, however, it was originally built in the time of James I., at the same [p. 188] time with the fort of Hallbouling. The mayors of Cork are the admirals of the river, and it is here they hold their court. Here, also, in the manner of their brethren at London, they have a grand annual entertainment at the expense of the city. [pp. 186-188]
Black Rock Castle, Cork