Kells Priory (June 12)

Our last stop on this very busy day was Kells Priory. This is the largest monastic monument in Ireland at just over three acres. It was founded in 1193 by Norman soldiers accompanied by Augustinian monks. The most dramatic 75 years in its history were between 1252 and 1327 when it was attacked and burned three times.

It seems like every site also must have an abandoned church.

The Irish don’t waste the space in an abandoned church, they just turn it into a graveyard.

Bob really likes this style gate. Allows people easy access without locks and keeps out the sheep.

The prior grew into the interesting structure that locals refer to as “the seven castles”. These “castles” are actually Norman tower houses connected by a wall that enclosed the religious function inside.

It’s a fairly good hike across the pasture to the main gate. Pretty easy as long as one watches one’s steps. The sheep seem totally unaffected by humans. The lamb didn’t even pause his dinner.

The priory was not as spectacular as some, but it did have some interesting drainage/plumbing.

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