Daniel O’Connell death mask presented to Office of Public Works

Daniel O’Connell death mask presented to Office of Public Works

The death mask of one of the country's best-known leaders is set to go on public display.

Daniel O’Connell, known as the Liberator, campaigned for Catholic emancipation and against the Act of Union between Great Britain and Ireland during his political career in the early 19th century.

He died in 1847 in Genoa, Italy, while on a pilgrimage to Rome at the age of 71.

The death mask of historic Irish leader Daniel O’Connell has been presented to the Office of Public Works (John Allen/PA)
The death mask of historic Irish leader Daniel O’Connell has been presented to the Office of Public Works (John Allen/PA)

O’Connell’s death mask has been in the custodianship of the Dunraven family for over 160 years.

On Saturday it was presented to the Office of Public Works (OPW).

The Countess of Dunraven made the presentation to Maurice Buckley, OPW chairman at the Daniel O’ Connell Summer School at Derrynane House in Co Kerry on Saturday.

Derrynane House, the family home of O’Connell, is now dedicated to his life and achievements, under the care of the OPW.

The mask is set to be added to the public display at the house.

This mask will be an incredibly valuable addition to the collection here

Kevin Moran, Minister of State with responsibility for the OPW, said: “As the custodians of Derrynane House and on behalf of the Irish State, the OPW is honoured and delighted to accept this generous gift from Countess Dunraven.”

Mr Buckley added: “Today Derrynane House is much more than a museum, it is a space that tells the story, from the cradle to the grave of the Liberator.

“This mask will be an incredibly valuable addition to the collection here and we look forward to making it central to the collection.”

- Press Association

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