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D'Acey Castle as it might have appeared to Asenath Nicholson"Following the winding road, I soon found the castle, proud in height and architecture, embosomed in wood, without gate or wall. After surveying it on every side, I was more satisfied with its plan than any I had seen; for while it looked up in independent grandeur, it seemed to look down with a bland smile, and say to the humblest visitor, "I hope you are pleased."

Going on through the wood, I entered a garden such as few domains could boast; tastefully laid out on mountain side and valley, without any enclosure, and gradually losing itself in woods among rivulets and cascades. The apple and lilac were in bloom, in the midst of these varied delights ….

D'Arcey Castle GateNot a spot in Ireland has been to my liking so much as this, because it breathed such a republican air of liberty. Not a placard said, "No trespass;" no surly porter followed to say, "My master allows no one about the place without a written pass."

D'Arcey CastleBut here the visitor may sit, stand, or stroll, fanned by the breezes of summer with the sweet scent of every flower, and feel that all was made for his enjoyment."

Mrs. Asenath Nicholson, Ireland's Welcome to the Stranger (1847).

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The Coastguard Station,Sky Road, Clifden, Co. Galway, Ireland  |  Telephone/Telefax: 095-21630  |  E-mail: coastguard75@anu.ie