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Christopher Palles Collection


Christopher Palles

UCD Library Special Collections holds the Christopher Palles Collection.
The Collection
  • The Christopher Palles Collection consists of books and journals of a legal nature from the 17th to early 20th century.
  • The collection is most useful for the study of Irish legal history for this period.
  • It was donated to UCD by William Walsh, Archbishop of Dublin, in 1921 and formed the basis of UCD’s Law Library at that time.
  • Items in the collection published before 1850 can be accessed in Special Collections.
  • Enquire at the Information Desk on Level 2 of the James Joyce Library for items published after 1850.
Biographical History
  • Christopher Palles (1831-1920) was born in Dublin and was a renowned Irish judge.
  • He was educated in Clongowes and Trinity and later in the King’s Inns Dublin and Gray’s Inn London. He was called to the bar in 1853.
  • In 1872 he was appointed by Gladstone as Solicitor General for Ireland and later that year to the post of Attorney General in Ireland.
  • Palles was interested in politics and supported the Liberal Party. He contested a by-election in 1872 against a Home Rule candidate and a Conservative which split the Catholic vote and resulted in a win for the Conservatives.
  • He was regarded as controversial due to his support for the Home Rule Party and his failure to support Cardinal Cullen in his denunciation of non denominational universities.
  • In 1874 he was appointed the senior judicial post of Chief Baron of the Exchequer Division.
  • He was on the bench for forty-two years and was regarded a judge of the highest standard.
  • In 1909 Palles was involved in the establishment of the National University of Ireland and UCD.
  • He retired from the bench in 1916 at the age of 85 and died in Dublin in 1920.
Access and Use
More Information
Find material in the collection:

Consult Delany, V.H.T. (1960) Christopher Palles, Dublin: Figgis, shelved on Level 2 at 340.092/PAL/D

Find information on Christopher Palles in the (opens in a new window)Dictionary of Irish Biography (UCD only).

Find information on Christopher Palles in the (opens in a new window)Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (UCD only).

UCD Special Collections

James Joyce Library, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland.
T: +353 1 716 7149 | E: special.collections@ucd.ie