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Giant's Ring Passage Tomb
 

County

Antrim

Coordinates

N 54° 32' 24.72"   W 005° 56' 59.46"

Nearest town

Belfast

Grid Ref.

J 32660 67694

Map No.

15

Elevation a.s.l. (m)

50

Date of visit

Friday 12 September 2003

GPS Accuracy (m)

3
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The passage tomb in the centre of the rath.


At the centre of a huge rath are the remains of a passage tomb.
The circular embankment has a height af almost 10 metres and a diameter of about 200 metres.
The passage tomb is 3 metres long, 2 metres wide and a height that varies from 1 metre to 1.80 metres. It faces north-northwest (340°).
Somebody had the brilliant idea to carve their names and initials on the stones of the tomb.
Almost nobody was here while we visited the site, yet this is a wondeful place!

UPDATE: June 6th, 2017 - We came here for the first time on September 12th, 2003, on a cloudy and cold day.
This time it was pouring rain, but we were granted a short sunny and dry period of time, enough to take some photos all around.
The Ring is a huge earthwork circle with an approximate diameter of 200 metres and a height of about 3.50 metres. There are two gaps in the bank, one on the northeast (45°) side, the other one on the southwest (210°) side. The two gaps are linked by a rather straight path that runs off-centre in the circle.
The purpose of the huge henge is unknown. The fact that the bank isn't too high or steep and that the ditch is on the inside of the ring suggests that its main use was ceremonial, probably for rites related to the death and burials.
Next to the path and still off-centre by about 20 metres to the southeast, there is a passage tomb made of 10 stones. The entrance of the tomb faces southeast (110°).
The tomb is about 2.90 metres long, 2.90 metres wide and 1.68 metres tall. On its highest point, the capstone has some cupmarks.

Some mindless people carved their names on the capstone!

The first 6 photos in this page are from the 2003 visit.


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