â€śThis is a fine and impressive piece of work that makes an original contribution to nineteenth-century Irish history generally and to Irish education specifically. It will be welcomed by scholars who seek information about this important episode of Irish history.â€ť â€”Senia Paseta, St. Hughâ€™s College, Oxford UniversityÂ The history of the Catholic University of Ireland has long been overshadowed by the personality and writings of its first rector, John Henry Newman. Newman, author of the renowned The Idea of a University, played a vital role in the foundation of the university. But Colin Barrâ€™s new study paints a richer portrait of CUIâ€™s history by focusing on the university itself and on the influence of its founder Paul Cullen, archbishop of Armagh and then Dublin.Â Most historians have based their treatments of the Catholic University of Ireland on Newmanâ€™s own voluminous correspondence and later writings and have tended uncritically to accept Newmanâ€™s own understanding of his role in Dublin and his relationship with Cullen. Newman has been cast in the role of a liberal, creative visionary who was frustrated at every turn by the obscurantist, ultramontane Cullen. Barr seeks to reassess Cullenâ€™s role in the founding and history of the University by utilizing previously unavailable sources and by relocating the history of the Catholic University in its Irish context.Â Paul Cullen, John Henry Newman, and the Catholic University of Ireland, 1845â€“1865 presents a balanced treatment of both the university and of Newman and Cullenâ€™s roles in its history. The resulting text is a fascinating story of determination, conflict, and failure.