The 18th century proved to be something of a golden age in Irish history. Ireland had been in a state of almost perpetual war since the 1580s. Now it was at peace. Dublin was transformed from a grimy, war-weary Tudor timberland into one of the most glittering cities in Western Europe. Ireland developed as a relatively prosperous economical unit primarily through the industries of textile manufacture and agriculture. As trade links between the colony and the ports of Europe gradually expanded, so too the population of Dublin and its surrounding landscape began to increase. New administrative and judicial buildings were built in the main towns, alongside banks, churches, markets, tholsels and gaols. There was an intellectual and cultural flowering throughout the land, encapsulated in the fiery words and witticisms of Dean Swift, Oliver Goldsmith and Edmund Burke.
Finnstown in the 18th Century