The Keshcarrigan bowl

The Keshcarrigan bowl
The keshcarrigan bowl

Keshcarrigan bowl by Jane Hawkes (CC)

This beautiful bronze bowl was discovered in 1854 in a river flowing into Lough Scur, which lies just north of Keshcarrigan in Co. Letrim. Iron Age in date and measuring approximately 14 cm in diameter, it may have been a ceremonial drinking cup.

The bowl is fashioned out of beaten bronze and was probably finished on a lathe, as a chuck mark is visible on its base. The handle is soldered on and is decorated with a distinctive bird’s head motif, which may represent a swan or duck. The bird’s head contains two eyes sockets and these may have originally held red enamel insets.  The remainder of the bowl is plain except for a hammered zig-zag line along the out-turned rim. This simple but striking artefact is reminiscent of 1st century AD bowls from southern Britain and it may represent an import. It would undoubtedly have been a prestigious item and its deposition in a watery context may represent ritual activity rather than an accidental loss.

References 

Jope, E. M. (1954) ‘The Keshcarrigann Bowl and a Bronze Mirror-Handle from Ballymoney’ in Ulster Journal of Archaeology, Third Series, Vol. 17, pp. 92-96

Waddell, J. (1998) The Prehistoric Archaeology of Ireland, Galway University Press, pp. 323-325

Wallace, P. F. (2000) A Guide to the National Museum of Ireland, Town House and Country House, Dublin, pp. 30-31

Iron Age bowl

Tags: , , ,

advert

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. The Keshcarrigan bowl | Irish Archaeology | Archaeology Updates | Scoop.it - March 4, 2013

    [...] Keshcarrigan bowl. This beautiful Iron Age bowl was discovered in a river flowing into Lough Scur, which lies just north of Keshcarrigan in Co. Letrim.  [...]

  2. The Keshcarrigan bowl | sceptic | Scoop.it - March 5, 2013

    [...] Keshcarrigan bowl by Jane Hawkes (CC) This beautiful bronze bowl was discovered in 1854 in a river flowing into Lough Scur, which lies just north of Keshcarrigan in Co. Letrim.  [...]

  3. The Keshcarrigan bowl | Irish Archaeology | L'actu culturelle | Scoop.it - March 12, 2013

    [...] Keshcarrigan bowl. This beautiful Iron Age bowl was discovered in a river flowing into Lough Scur, which lies just north of Keshcarrigan in Co. Letrim.  [...]

  4. April 2013 | Ellen Evert Hopman - April 4, 2013

    [...] The Keshcarrigan Iron Age Bowl [...]

Leave a Reply

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]