St. Kieran’s Chapel – Glendalough

St. Kierans Church (1)

After entering the ancient monastic city of Glendalough from the visitors center, the first building or should I say part of, are the remains of St. Kieran’s Chapel. At first I was stumped as to what it was? There was no sign as most of the other ruins had so perhaps it was just some unimportant building. But I decided to take some shots anyway. Happily I was wrong. All that remains are the partial walls of the church, about 1 meter in height. Named after Kieran, the founder of another fine monastic city at Clonmacnoise, Co, Co. Offaly, whom died around the middle of the 6th century. This is the smallest of the surviving churches at Glendalough. Interestingly by the 9th century, Glendalough rivalled Clonmacnoise,  as the leading monastic city of Ireland.

St. Kierans Church (2)

St. Kieran’s with St. Kevin’s Church and the Round Tower in the background.

It consisted of a small Nave and Chancel which were only re-discovered during excavations here in 1875 and was built using dry stone rubble. The foundation of a stone altar was discovered in the chancel and there is a small doorway in its south wall. Other features which are still evident include a door in the west, a narrow chancel opening, the door in the south wall of chancel, which may have led to a sacristy, and the afor mentioned foundations of a stone altar. In the annals there is a possible reference to its burning in 1163AD, but it is believed to have been built no earlier than the 11th century which would mean that it had a relatively short lifespan considering its neighbors.

St. Kierans Church (3)

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About edmooneyphotography

Photographer, Blogger, Ruinhunter, with an unhealthy obsession for history, mythology and the arcane.
This entry was posted in Diary of a Ruinhunter, Photography, Places of Interest, Religious Sites, Round Tower and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

18 Responses to St. Kieran’s Chapel – Glendalough

  1. Karen says:

    This is such an incredibly beautiful, mystical spot. Wonderful seeing it in these moody black & white shots.

  2. Thanks for sharing both your wonderful photos and knowledge Ed 😀

  3. Especially liking these–named my oldest son Kiaran–popular in Ireland I have heard, but not so much in Texas 😉

  4. Pingback: St. Kevin’s Kitchen – Glendalough | EdMooneyPhotography

  5. ybawany says:

    Haunting; I love it. Thanks for sharing, Ed.

  6. Again beautiful!! and makes me nostalgic for Glendalough.

  7. Pingback: Monastic City- Glendalough | EdMooneyPhotography

  8. Lovely photos! Will you do me a favor and tweet some of my posts some time? Cheers!

  9. adhmad58 says:

    Wonderful white and black photos. The old stones shine in this view. I link to this work in one of my blog entries (Mujerárbol). Keep the cool stuff, Mr. Mooney.

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