Irish Archaeology website

16th century Irish Hipsters

I recently spotted what appeared to be remarkably modern looking haircuts in Albrecht Druer’s woodcut of 1521 AD[i]. This image shows a group of Irish soldiers[ii], most likely mercenaries, who were fighting on the European continent during the early 1520s. I soon discovered that, far from being unusual, this distinctive hairstyle was actually very popular […]

Through the millennia: Irish Archaeology in photos

Here is another selection of  amazing images from our Photography Competition, this time spanning the entire breadth of Irish archaeology. Don’t forget there are also specific posts showing some of the Prehistoric, Early Medieval, Late Medieval and Foreign Archaeology photos. All of the images used in this blog post are copyright of the respective photographers, please respect this. ‘Starry Night at […]

Castles and Abbeys: Medieval Ireland in Photos

Here is a selection of some of the fantastic images that have been entered into our Photography Competition, this time with an emphasis on Medieval sites. Don’t forget there are also blog posts on the Prehistoric and Early Medieval photos. All of the images used in this blog post are copyright of the respective photographers, […]

Early Medieval Ireland in Photos

Early Medieval Ireland in Photos. A small selection of some of the brilliant images that have been entered into our Photography Competition, this time with an emphasis on Early Medieval sites. You can seen a selection of Prehistoric photos here. The competition runs until the 31st of July, so don’t be afraid to enter.  All of […]

Prehistoric Ireland in Photos

Prehistoric Ireland in Photos. In  case you didn’t know it already, Irish Archaeology.ie are running a photography competition for the month of July. So far there has been an amazing response and the standard of entries has been fantastic.  Below are just a small selection of these photos, with an emphasis on prehistoric sites. The competition runs […]

Mount Sandel, a Mesolithic Campsite

Approximately 9,000 years ago, a small band of Mesolithic hunter-gathers chose a high ridge over-looking the River Bann in modern day Co. Derry as their home. Here, in a forest clearing, they erected a series of tent-like structures, fashioned out of wooden posts and covered in hides or thatch. These simple buildings represent Ireland’s very […]

Thor’s Wood, a sacred grove near Viking Age Dublin?

In late December 999 AD Brian Bóruma, king of Munster, decisively defeated the Viking’s of Dublin[i] at the battle of Glen Máma[ii]. This bloody contest was a severe set-back for the Hiberno-Norse inhabitants of the city, and their king, Sitric Silkbeard, was forced to flee. The following day Brian’s troops marched on Dublin, which they […]

Poulnabrone Tomb: Life and Death in the Burren

Standing proud in the stark landscape of the Burren Co. Clare, the iconic megalithic tomb at Poulnabrone is one of Ireland’s most photographed archaeological sites. Dating from the Neolithic period, this distinctive monument has revealed a wealth of information about the lives and burial customs of Ireland’s very first farming communities. Poulnabrone is classified as […]

The Lisdrumturk Cauldron

Discovered in 1854, by turf-cutters digging in a Co. Monaghan bog, the Lisdrumturk Cauldron is an exceptional example of Late Bronze Age metal-working. It was undoubtedly a high status object and its burial in a bog may be indicative of ritual activity. Finally crafted, the cauldron measures 29.5cm high by 50cm in diameter. It is made from […]

Toy Viking boat

A Viking Age toy boat from Dublin

This image shows a wooden replica of an ocean-going Viking longboat that was discovered during the National Museum of Ireland’s excavations at Winetavern Street, Dublin. Most likely a toy, the vessel measures approximately 37 cm in length by a maximum of 8.5 cm in width. Originally the boat would have had a mast and a […]

Recent News

Rocking through the Ages

This week’s Friday fun contains a selection of images of famous musicians hanging out at archaeological sites. Hope you enjoy them! 1. A  1961 New York Times photo, showing Louis Armstrong playing trumpet for his wife, Lucille, in front of the Great Sphinx and pyramids in Giza, Egypt.    2. A very young looking U2 […]

Read More 0 Comments

Crios Cords: traditional Irish woven belts

By Alva Mac Gowan I was fortunate enough to have been raised by parents who had a huge appreciation for traditional Irish craft. Despite them both being from Dublin, we spent our summers exploring Ireland’s diverse and unique, rural heritage. You see, my father is an artist, and he would take us to the most […]

Read More 3 Comments

Viking Blacksmith’s Grave Uncovered in Norway

The spectacular remains of what appears to be a Viking grave, most likely belonging to a blacksmith, has been uncovered in Sogndalsdalen, Norway (as reported by NRK). The grave was found by Mr Leif Arne Norberg, under a series of stone slabs in his back garden. Mr Norberg had been carrying out landscaping works when he […]

Read More 2 Comments

Ancient Look a Likes

For this week’s Friday fun I’ve shared some ancient sculptures which share an uncanny likenesses with modern day celebrities.  See what you think below!  1. Ancient Egyptian Statue/Michael Jackson    2. Bust from a Roman tomb/Elvis Presley     3. Stone face at Kilkenny Castle/Keith Duffy of Boyzone and Coronation Street fame    4. Roman Emperor […]

Read More 0 Comments

Photos of Ancient Churches, Abbeys and Graves

A selection of some of the brilliant images that have been entered into our Photography Competition, this time with an emphasis on ancient churches, abbeys and graves. Don’t forget there are also posts showing photos of Irish Castles and Forts and Prehistoric Irish sites. All of the images used in this blog post are copyright of the respective photographers, […]

Read More 2 Comments

Ancient Ireland in Photos

A selection of some of the amazing images that have been entered into our Photography Competition, this time with an emphasis on ancient sites. Don’t forget there is also a post showing photos of Irish Castles and Forts. All of the images used in this blog post are copyright of the respective photographers, please respect this. The Hole […]

Read More 6 Comments

Jenning’s Castle, Castlegrove, Co. Galway

I recently visited the very well preserved remains of a tower house at  Castlegrove near Tuam, Co. Galway. Known locally as Jenning’s Castle, the fortress was built by the de Burgo (Burke) family, most likely during the 16th century. It was to remain in their possession until the tumultuous Cromwellian Confiscations of the the 1650s, […]

Read More 0 Comments

Irish Castles and Forts in Photos

Here is a selection of some of the fantastic images that have been entered into our Photography Competition, this time with an emphasis on Castles and Forts. All of the images used in this blog post are copyright of the respective photographers, please respect this. Three Castles Head in West Cork by Esteban Garcia Alonso Carrigadrohid Castle. […]

Read More 4 Comments

Meet the Archaeologist: Breandán Ó Ríordáin

by Adrienne Corless ‘An archaeologist is really like a detective because he is always on the lookout for clues of various kinds which will help him in forming some idea of the way of life and customs of the people who lived in ancient times. As he is usually dealing with that period of time […]

Read More 1 Comment

Archaeologists uncover medieval human remains outside Trinity College, Dublin

Exciting news emerged today about a number of skeletons which were recently discovered outside Trinity College, Dublin, by Rubicon Heritage Services. In total, the partial remains of five individuals were identified at a depth of 1.5m below current street level.  According to Rubicon this is ‘well  below the known level of post-medieval activity, suggesting the remains are […]

Read More 4 Comments

In photos: The ornate medieval stonework at Boyle Abbey, Roscommon

Founded in 1161 AD, by the Cistercian order of monks, Boyle Abbey, Co. Roscommon contains a fine collection of medieval decorated stonework. These pieces are found inside the ruins of the late 12th/early 13th century church and take the form of ornate capitals. Exploiting a variety of decorative motifs, the stone capitals contain images of both […]

Read More 1 Comment

Irish Archaeology’s Photograph Competition 2014

The annual Irish Archaeology.ie photo competition is open once more for entries. Last year’s competition was very successfully and we received loads of fantastic images. You can view some of theses photos here, here, here, here and here.  Hopefully the standard will be equally high this year. The photos submitted should feature archaeological or historical […]

Read More 3 Comments

A Mesolithic cemetery: Ireland’s oldest burials

  On a bend of the River Shannon, Ireland’s largest watercourse, a small band of hunter-gathers came to together nearly […]

Images of Newgrange through the ages

The Neolithic  passage tomb at Newgrange is the most visited archaeological site in Ireland. Over 5000 years old it pre-dates the first phase of […]

The Broighter hoard

The remarkable Broighter hoard, arguably the finest treasure trove of the Irish Iron Age, was discovered on a February evening […]

The Oseberg Viking ship burial

  In 1904 a remarkable archaeological site was uncovered at Oseberg, Norway. It consisted of an astonishingly well-preserved Viking ship […]

The death of an elephant, Dublin, 1681

I stumbled across a curious 17th century account of an elephant in Dublin city recently. Yes, you read right, an […]

Dublin’s lost buildings: The Dutch Billy

  Strolling through some of Dublin streets at the begining of the 18th century, an English visitor to the city […]