St Patrick’s Street

Published in Issue 2 (March/April 2015), Letters, Volume 23

Sir,—Last issue’s ‘Gems of Architecture’ (HI 23.1, Jan./Feb. 2015), on the Roche’s Stores building on Cork’s main thoroughfare, never refers to the street by its correct name—St Patrick’s Street. I acknowledge that the term ‘Patrick Street’ is commonly spoken, but I believe that the correct name should be used at the very least in the subheadings or introductory paragraph. The correct name of a street holds embedded within it much information about that street’s history and identity, none more so than Cork’s St Patrick’s Street, which, since its foundation in the 1780s with the infilling of a river channel, has retained its original name.—Yours etc.,

Cork’s St Patrick’s Street: A History (The Collins Press, 2011)

My edit and not that of the author, Louise M. Harrington. Your point about names and a street’s history and identity is well made, but surely names—like language itself—evolve over time through usage? For example, who today refers to Dublin’s Hammond Lane by its original name, Hangman’s Lane?


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