In addition to the outline given on each building this tour will look at the contrasts and tensions caused by having two medieval cathedrals in such close proximity.
Architectural competition between the two institutions was intense in the medieval period. Christ Church nave c.1235-45 can be seen as a response to the erection of the choir and crossing of St Patrick’s 1225-1234, and the Lady Chapel of c.1270 in St Patrick’s is a response to Christ Church nave. It is also clear that many of the medieval masons worked on both buildings.
Christ Church Cathedral served as the Chapel Royal in the early modern period and while the architectural changes in the castle in the course of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries are not echoed in either cathedral, the Knights of St Patrick forge a close link between castle and St Patrick’s Cathedral, its choir served as the chapel of the KP Order.
The rebuilt Chapel Royal in the Lower Castle Yard built by Francis Johnston in the early decades of the nineteenth can usefully inform the restoration campaign strategies in each cathedral later in the same century.