The Pepper Canister Church
St. Stephen’s Church, fondly referred to by Dubliners as the Pepper Canister, was the last of a series of Georgian churches built by the Church of Ireland in the early 1800’s. The Pepper Canister Church Still used as a place of worship, the venue also hosts musical events including performances by the James Vincent McMorrow and Fionn Regan.
St. Stephen’s Church was the last of a distinguished series of Georgian churches built by the Church of Ireland. These new suburbs were built on the estates of families that are now commemorated in the names of the streets and squares of Dublin – names like Gardener (Mountjoy), Dawson, Molesworth, and Pembroke (Herbert). It was on the land of the Pembroke estate – the medieval manor of Merrion – that St. Stephen’s church was built (on ground donated by the family). The Pembroke pew is still identifiable.
The estate was originally owned by the Fitzwilliam family, but as a consequence of marriage Viscount Fitzwilliam bequeathed the manor of Merrion to his cousin, the earl of Pembroke (a member of the Herbert family) in 1816. All these names are reflected in the streets and squares in the vicinity of the church. Two other street names have a curious origin. The name of Mount Street is thought to have been derived from a mound which once stood at the corner of Fitzwilliam and Baggot Street, where a gallows was erected for the execution of criminals. The name Baggot comes from the medieval Manor of Baggotrath, owned by the Bagods.