Annaghdown - Priory Church




N 53° 23' 13.14"   W 009° 04' 22.26"

Nearest town


Grid Ref.

M 28631 37961

Map No.


Elevation a.s.l. (m)


Date of visit

Thursday 14 June 2018

GPS Accuracy (m)

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The ruins seen from the southeast.

This complex is commonly known with the name of Annaghdown Priory, its full name is Abbey of St. Mary de Portu Patrum, and was the house of the Arroasian Canons.

It was founded by Turlough O'Conor around 1140, and stands about 140 metres southwest from the Cathedral, outside of the graveyard, and a few metres away from the shore of Lough Corrib.

The ruins consist of a very long chancel and nave church on the north side of the complex, living quarters in the east and south ranges, and a central cloister garth. The west range had no buildings.
The access to the ruins is through a passage in the south wall of the south range. This building now looks more like a courtyard. Into a niche in the north wall of this building fragments of decorated jambs or pillars have been stored for protection.

The west end of the church is the more intact, with the west gable to its full height. A splayed rectangular window is high in the wall. There's an ogee window and a pointed arch doorway, now partially walled up, in the north wall of the nave. The east wall is badly damaged, and the east window is no longer there, it was most likely moved to the St. Brendan's Cathedral, where a wonderfully carved window, from the same period of this priory, has been inserted in a later east wall.
There are two round-headed windows in the north and south walls. The latter one has carved animal head at the ends of the moulding. These windows are from the 12th century, all other windows were added a century later.
The church is aligned to the east-northeast (75°).

The east range building is a long structure divided in several chambers and with lots of windows.

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