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Who
What
Where
When
Why
Tullaherin Round Tower
 

County

Kilkenny

Coordinates

N 52° 34' 45.3"   W 007° 07' 48.12"

Nearest town

Thomastown

Grid Ref.

S 58963 47906

Map No.

67

Elevation a.s.l. (m)

84

Date of visit

Friday 22 June 2007

GPS Accuracy (m)

3
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The ruined round tower surrounded by the abandoned scaffoldings.


This is a monastic site founded in the 5th or 6th century by Ciaran of Saighir. It's an old graveyard with the extension of a new graveyard. In the older section there are the ruins of a church dated from the 10th century and a very ruined round tower.
In its origin the round tower would have been six-storeys tall. In the 15th century was restored and the cap was replaced, but today almost nothing remains of it. The whole monastic site is under restoration, but judging from the state of the scaffoldings and the warning signs, the works might have begun several years ago and I could dare to say that nobody has been working here for a very long time.
Among the ruins of the church there are some nice grave slabs.

UPDATE: June 24th, 2016 - I had learned that at last the tower and the site were freed from the scaffolding. Since we were in the area again, we thought to make a second visit.
The site was quite better than the last time we were here, the weather was worse.
Undoubtedly the most interesting element of the monastic site is the round tower. It has a diameter of 5 metres and a height of about 22.60 metres at its highest part on the northeast side.
The doorway is on the northeast (30°) side, it is irregularly shaped, with no jambs, it looks more like a breach in the wall. Its sill is at 3.50 metres from the ground. The access is blocked by a metal mesh.
The top of the tower is missing for more than a half, but it shows a good number of rectangular windows all around.
Other four windows point to southeast, west, northwest and north-northeast in an ascending order.
The tower leans slightly to the south.

An ogham stone stands at 2 metres east from the tower.


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