Jul 18 2009

‘The Hanging Judge’

Published by at 6:23 pm under News


John Toler, 1st Earl of Norbury is the man responsible for the hanging of Robert Emmett. Toler was born in Tipperary and his family originally came from Norfolk in England. He had a house situated on the corner of Rathoath Road and Fassaugh Avenue in Cabra West but died in 3  Great Denmark Street, Dublin in 1831. He was buried in Saint Mary’s graveyard  next to the church in Mary’s Street, Dublin. (The one pictured above).

The following article found in the Evening Herald of 1960 draws some attention to Cabra West and the ‘Hanging Judge’.

A corrospondent draws attention this week to the house of the ill-famed Lord Norbury, the presiding judge at the trial of Robert Emmett, which stood where a prortion of the Cabra West housing estate is now situated. I remember the house very well and no doubt many other Northsiders will also recall this grim edifice with its many windows. There has never been any shortage of eerie stories in connection with the house of the ‘Hanging Judge’. Does a ghost exist since the earthly abode has been torn down? Has anyone noticed a transparent lady around? One winters night back in the late 1930’s I had occasion to call on behalf of my employer to a house in Cabra known as Lord Norbury’s. This house has long since been demolished. A buckled bicycle wheel and a sprained ankle made my departure from the house difficult and I gladly accepted an invitation to remain the night. I have always been a light sleeper and at about midnight I woke with the uneasy feeling that someone was in the room. Sitting up in bed I saw a tall thin woman of about thirty years of age coming through the closed door. I could see her quite clearly by a kind of white radiance which enveloped her. She walked across the room with a fixed gaze of a sleep-walker and when I found that I could see the chest-of-drawers through her, I realised that she did not belong to this world. I tried to shout but my mouth had gone dry and not a sound could I make. The lady walked towards the bed and although her eyes had a faraway look that did not see me but rather to see through me, she stretched out her hand in the direction of my face. I must have passed out then as my recollection is of waking up at daybreak. Inquiries from my host elicited some vague reference to the ‘poor lady’ and the furtive looks from one to the other. I have never found out any details about this lady but maybe some of your readers could help.

No responses yet

Comments are closed.