Shoppers walking through Dublin City Centre have been puzzled to see the iconic Molly Malone statue completely covered in gold cloth. (Picture courtesy of @pamille on Twitter)There was no sign to explain the sudden cover-up so what was going on?
Or was she undergoing some repair work, or maybe just a little makeover? The statue has been criticised by some for being a little too revealing. Was someone trying to restore Molly’s modesty?
The answer turned out to be that she was simply taking a day off. The idea was part of a project involving art and architecture students in Dublin. This involved numerous events around the city, including the covering up of famous statues under the banner of ‘The Monument’s Day Off’.
Molly no doubt welcomed a break from all that attention from tourists? The statue is placed in a busy shopping area across from Trinity College and has become a magnet for holidaymakers. People from all over the world queue to have their picture taken next to Dublin’s most famous daughter.
The story of Molly Malone, the fishmonger’s daughter who “wheeled her wheelbarrow through streets broad and narrow” is known across the world, even by people who have no connection with Irish music. For many, she is the symbol of Dublin.
The irony is that she may never have existed, even though many insist the story is based on a real person. The song is thought to have been written James Yorkston from Edinburgh and became popular in music halls throughout Britain in the 19th century.