Sara Keating: New Book of Kells exhibition illuminates the significance of our national treasure

The Book of Kells Experience offers digital, interactive re-creations of the Long Room and the book itself, as well as witty encounters with literary heroes

The Book of Kells Experience is a landmark literary museum for the city, providing a digital interface for exploring a book usually only witnessed a double-spread at a time. Picture: Barry McCall

In 1661, as Oliver Cromwell took up residence in County Meath, the Book of Kells, already famous for its impressive illustrations, was moved to Trinity College Dublin for safekeeping, where it has been held as part of the college’s book collection ever since.

Recognising the cultural importance of the elaborately reproduced Bible text, in the 19th century the college put it on public display in the beautiful Old Library building.

Visiting it in a shushed ...