Mussenden Temple by GLENN MILES

Mussenden Temple

Mussenden Temple sits majestically on top of a cliff in the surrounds of Downhill demesne on the beautiful north coast of N.Ireland near Castlerock. The temple was built-in 1785 by the lord bishop of Derry Frederick Hervey as his private library and is part of Downhill castle which also lies in ruins. It is thought that the temple was based on the design of Bramante's Tempietto in Rome's Janiculum hill which was inspired by the Temple of Vesta at Tivoli near Rome in Italy. The temple also serves as a memorial to the lord bishops young cousin Mrs Frideswide Mussenden who was a young mother and died at the age of 22. The area is designated as an area of outstanding natural beauty and in summer boasts some of the most beautiful sunsets in the world with the temple silhouetted against the skyline.