Archive for 'Passage Tombs'

Carrowkeel Passage Tomb Complex

Carrowkeel Passage Tomb Complex

Castlebaldwin, Co. Sligo
The Carrowkeel passage tombs are only 20 minutes from the rushing traffic of the N4. But they are a world apart: a transition from a modern community to a landscape of deserted blanket bog and heather-covered hills, punctuated with jutting limestone cliffs and rift valleys.

Dowth

Dowth

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.

Fourknocks

Fourknocks

Stamullen, Co. Meath
Fourknocks was unknown until 1950. It has no mention in the old folkloric literature. But the absence of fairies in Fourknocks does not matter; the monument is a regular destination for “sacred sites” tours for the followers of neo-pagan and earth-based spiritual practices.

Árd Ladhran

Árd Ladhran

Ardamine, Co. Wexford
The mound of Árd Ladhran was, in legend, the tomb of Ladhra, who was interred just 40 days before Noah’s Ark set sail, making Ladhra the first man to die in Ireland.

Keshcorran, and the Caves of Kesh

Keshcorran, and the Caves of Kesh

Keash, Co Sligo
It is a steep climb up a hillside, but the view from inside Cormac’s Cave makes it obvious how this location might have inspired the legends that surround it.

Slieve Gullion

Slieve Gullion

Meigh, Co. Armagh
This spot might have been conjured by a Hollywood set designer. Who else might have put a magical lake on the summit of a mountain, with mysterious burial mounds at each end, one the home of a legendary witch who matched wits with the fabled Finn McCool?

Loughcrew Passage Tomb Complex (Sliabh na Caillíghe)

Loughcrew Passage Tomb Complex (Sliabh na Caillíghe)

Oldcastle, Co. Meath
On his visit to the Loughcrew hills, also called Sliabh na Caillíghe (The Hill of the Witch) Jonathan Swift heard tales of the “monster woman” who once ruled the area. She was the local incarnation of An Cailleach Bhéara, the Hag of Beare.

Newgrange

Newgrange

Slane, Co Meath
In 1699 the proprietor of the townland of New Grange needed stones for building. He dug into the scrub-covered mound on his land and soon discovered the mouth of a “cave.” What he found was Ireland’s most significant archaeological treasure. Newgrange is one of the oldest buildings in the world.


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