Rothe House is the only example of an early 17th century merchant’s townhouse in Ireland. Rothe House was built between 1594 and 1610 by John Rothe Fitz Piers. The house is comprised of three buildings, one behind the other. The additional buildings were added in 1604 and 1610 to accommodate the merchant’s growing family of twelve children.
The Rothe Family, along with a handful of other wealthy families, dictated Kilkenny’s trade and controlled its civic government from the late Middle Ages until the 17th Century. Rothe House is open to the public as a museum, displaying some of the 2,500 artefacts collected by the Kilkenny Archaeological Society since its founding in 1947.
Rothe House Gardens opened in 2008 and are a reconstruction of an early 17th century urban walled garden. The half-acre gardens are also open to the public.