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Desmond Castle
 

County

Limerick

Coordinates

N 52° 34' 10.2"   W 008° 46' 58.74"

Nearest town

Adare

Grid Ref.

R 46921 46755

Map No.

65

Elevation a.s.l. (m)

7

Date of visit

Sunday 18 June 2017

GPS Accuracy (m)

3
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The castle reflects in the waters of River Maigue. Seen from the southwest.


In the area of the Adare Manor golf course, north of the River Maigue, there's this wonderful fortress.
It was built by William de Burgo in the 12th century, but it changed hands a century later and came in possession of the Earls of Kildare.
In 1536 it was granted to the FitzGeralds, Earls of Desmond.
In 1569 James FitzMaurice FitzGerald rebelled against the Tudor conquest of Ireland and led the First Desmond Rebellion. For this rebellion he was exiled in Europe for about ten years, he returned to Ireland in 1579, but he died shortly after his arrival.
The castle was destroyed by the Cromwellian army in 1657.
It was restored to its current condition in 1996.

The fortress has a large outer ward and a smaller inner ward. The modern entrance to the outer ward is in the west side where a gatehouse with a heavy timber door is. Past the timber door is a portcullis. Both are modern reconstructions of what the castle had in its glory days.
To the south of the ward there are two large halls, the first one is the Great Hall.
To the north side is the main tower and the inner ward inside a tall round wall. Around the wall that encloses the inner ward is a wide moat. A drawbridge across the moat would allow the access to the main tower, today there's a convenient metal bridge.
Another moat surrounds the whole fortress.

The access to the castle is by guided tours only.


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