The Honan Chapel & Collection - Virtual Tour

This section of the site allows one to virtually step into the world that is the honan, and explore it from within and without through the medium of quicktime virtual reality.

One can also explore video content through the following link: Video

To explore the honan simply click on the hotspot of interest to you on the map below

Our Lord Our Lady St. Joseph St. Ita St. Colman St. Brendan St. Gobnet St. Flannan St. Carthage St. Brigid St. Patrick St. Columcille St. Munchin St. Fachtna St. Ailbe St. Declan St. Albert St. Finnbarr St. John Map of the Honan
Window of St. Finnbarr
St. Finnbarr (Clarke)

Tradition holds that Finbarr was one of a community of monks who had a monastic settlement near the place where the river Lee rises. This is in Gougane Barra in Uibh Laoire parish. St. Finbarr's Oratory was built in 1905 on the small island on a lake at Gougane on what has long been a place of pilgrimage of prayer. St. Finbarr is said to have journeyed to the mouth of the Lee where it meets the sea and established a monastic school around which grew what developed into the city of Cork.

According to legend, while Finbarr was still unborn his parents were ordered to be burnt at the stake as a punishment for disobedience to their king, but a great wind extinguished the fire and they were saved. This is illustrated in the upper panel. In the lower panel the saint's consecration is shown where St. Finbarr and St. Macuirp were raised into the air by angels. In the main panel Finnbarr is shown with his right hand raised and , although gloved, it glows with a brilliant flame. Legend tells that once when the saint was praying the Saviour visited him and took him by the hand afterwards the saint's hand glowed so brightly that he needed to wear a glove. The border shows the hazel tree which blossomed and bore fruit in the depths of winter at the saint's bidding. Finbarr's feast is kept on September 25th. An annual pilgrimage day at Gougane is held on the last Sunday of September.

Introduction to the Windows

There are nineteen windows in the Honan Chapel. Eleven were designed by Harry Clarke and eight were designed by An Túr Gloine (The Tower of Glass), 1903-63. Sarah Purser employed three designers in her studio: A. E. Child, Ethel Rhind and Catherine O'Brien. They all contributed work to the Honan Chapel. Both glass studios were based in Dublin. The Honan Chapel represents the first major commission for Harry Clarke. In 1914 Sir John O'Connell commissioned the young Clarke to produce the west windows. Between 1915-17 Clarke worked on windows in the nave and sanctuary.

The windows in the sanctuary, around the altar, represent scenes from the Passion of Christ recounted in the Gospel of St. John, the Risen Christ, the Virgin Mary and St. Joseph. Those at the west end, over the door, represent the three great saints of the early Irish Church (St. Columba or Columcille, St. Patrick and St. Brigid). The windows in the nave represent the local saints of Cork and its surrounding communities in Munster.

The nineteen stained glass windows have been cleaned and restored by Abbey Stained Glass Studio in Dublin.

View the Alter View the Interior (Middle Asile) View the Alter Area View from the Top of the Asile Map of the Honan