Illustrated Guide to Newgrange and other Boyne Monuments
Guide to Newgrange and other Boyne Monuments
. Claire studied archaeology under
Professor Sean P. O Riordain at University College, Cork. One of her
fellow-students was Michael J. O'Kelly
to succeed O Riordain in the chair of archaeology in Cork. Mrs O'Kelly has
been concerned in all her husband's excavations, as well as undertaking
independent research on a number of archaeological projects.
This Guide is the result of intensive research into every aspect of the
wonderful prehistoric monument that is Newgrange and this third edition (first
printed in 1978) brings together all the discoveries made during the
excavations, 1962 -1975.
It is half as long again as the previous edition and incorporates completely new
material as well as widening its scope to include the other Boyne monuments.
These are illustrated by new text figures and new plates.
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Description of Newgrange
Newgrange is one of the finest examples, not only in Ireland, but in Western
Europe, of the type of tomb known as a passage-grave. Its probable date of
erection is about 3000 BC. It belongs to a time when stone, not metal, was the
everyday material for tools and weapons. No metal has yet been found in a
primary context in an Irish passage-grave. More ...
Newgrange attracts large numbers of visitors every year. Many of them, in fact
the vast majority, come in organised groups so their visit is necessarily of
short duration. On the other hand, the monument has a particular interest for
students of archaeology, art and kindred subjects and consequently a limited
visit with limited guide book in hand has small appeal for them.
In an endeavour to cater for these separate requirements the Guide is divided
into three sections. Section I presents a brief summary of the main features of
the monument in the order in which they are encountered and tries to answer the
questions most usually asked about them. Section II gives a detailed inventory
of the ornament, the first time this has been done. Section III fills in the
details of the first section - general background, historical references, new
discoveries, discussion of techniques, etc., and is for more leisured reading in
conjunction with the illustrations. Claire O'Kelly
This edition has been enlarged by the inclusion of discoveries made at Newgrange
between 1967 and 1970 inclusive. The kerbstones uncovered during that period
have been added to the Inventory of Ornament; discoveries relating to the
structure of mound and tomb are described and discussed; new dating of
passage-graves is dealt with; an account is given of observations made at the
time of the winter solstice. The section-drawing of the tomb has been
brought up to date and three new plates have been substituted. Claire O'Kelly
This edition of the Guide has been expanded by one half as much again from
what it was when the second edition appeared. Five further seasons of excavation
were yet to come at that time and discoveries made in the course of them are
responsible for some of the extra pages.
As well as that, two new chapters have been introduced pertaining to the Boyne
valley area in general, one of them on its literature and history, and the other
containing an inventory of all the known antiquities of the area.
There is a new map of the Boyne passage-grave cemetery, there are seven
additional text figures, and new plates have been substituted in seven
instances. Claire O'Kelly
In this third edition of the Guide I have been greatly helped by the Rev. Colmcille
Conway, OCSO, Mellifont Abbey; Dr A. T. Lucas, formerly director of the National
Museum of Ireland; an tOllamh Padraig Ó Riain, Colaiste na hOllscoile, Corcaigh;
Mr Jon Patrick, formerly of Bolton St College of Technology, Dublin; and
especially by my husband, Prof. Michael J. O'Kelly
, University College, Cork, in
particular with respect to the inventory of Boyne valley sites which is based on
his survey, and also for making available much new material in advance of his
own publicadon of it.
I am indebted also to Dr George Eogan
, University College, Dublin, for most
ready cooperation in regard to Knowth. I should also like to thank Mr Shane
Sinnott, director John English & Co., for his advice and help throughout the
decade since the first edition of the Guide appeared.
Boyne Valley Private Day Tours
Pick up and return to your accommodation or cruise ship. Suggested day tour:
Newgrange World Heritage site, 10th century High Crosses at Monasterboice,
Hill of Tara the seat of the High Kings of Ireland and the Hill of Slane where St. Patrick let a Paschal fire in 433