Trinity College Dublin is to commission four new sculptures representing women scholars for display in the Long Room of the Old Library.

Scientist Rosalind Franklin, folklorist, dramatist and theatre-founder Lady Augusta Gregory, mathematician Ada Lovelace and writer and pioneering women's rights advocate Mary Wollstonecraft have been chosen from a list of more than 500 suggestions.

There are currently 40 marble busts - all of men - in the Long Room.

This is the first time in over a century that the university has commissioned new sculptures for this area.

No new sculptures have been commissioned since the 1880s and no additional sculptures have been installed since the 1920s.

In a statement, Trinity College said that it "is aware that women will still represent only 10% of the busts in the Long Room and that the existing subjects do not represent the ethnic and gender diversity that distinguishes the history of scholarship".

The university said that as it develops the next steps in this process, it welcomes ideas about how best to reflect the full diversity of academic achievement.

Provost, Dr Patrick Prendergast, said: "The Long Room in the Old Library of Trinity College Dublin is one of the most magnificent rooms in the world, visited by hundreds of thousands of people most years. I welcome this initiative as a step towards reflecting the university's diversity in such a nationally significant location."