Killaloe, Co. Clare
Within a trench dug into the ringfort the archaeologists discovered evidence of a rectangular wooden building, paved with large slabs of stone and containing a central hearth. Can this be where Brian Boru, the “Emperor of the Gael,” lived as a youth?
Slane, Co Meath
Dowth means “darkness.” And darkness is what’s left for the visitor today. The electricity has been turned off and entrance is generally prohibited. Dowth was named from the darkness that fell on it when the king and his sister committed an unforgivable act.
Cushendall, Co. Antrim
This tomb was known as “Cloughbrack” on early maps. It is unclear when it became connected with Ossian and the effort to reclaim Ireland’s ancient folkloric patrimony from the fabrications of an upstart Scotsman.
Inishmurray, Co. Sligo
Today a visitor on a day trip from Mullaghmore might be tempted to idealize life on this small island. But the story of Inishmurray is a tale of two communities, each now deserted, each in its own era confronting great challenges.
Downpatrick, Co. Down
The Mound of Down, wildly overgrown with bushes and trees, is but a short walk down the hill from Down Cathedral. The Mound dates from the Iron Age; the Cathedral was first constructed in the 12th century.
The Burren, Co. Clare
This exquisitely-proportioned monument sits just off a main tourist route, its spacious new parking area accommodating dozens of buses disgorging daily many hundreds of their polyglot passengers. Some arrive sadly misinformed.
Killinaboy, Co. Clare
Paul Keane explains what happened to someone who attempted to remove stones from the tomb. “He went home, and he went into bed, and he never got up ’til he died. And he died several times.”
Tulla, Co. Clare
Did the memory of a first-century warrior’s grave so impress itself upon the early Dalcassians that they enshrined its sanctity for the inauguration of their own princes from the 5th to the 16th century, including the illustrious Brian Boru?
Myths and Megaliths
The ancient Irish made their mark on the land with great stone and earthen structures. The legends that developed were thought to be among the earliest voices from the dawn of western civilization.