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Fore - St. Feichin's Church
 

County

Westmeath

Coordinates

N 53° 40' 53.2"   W 007° 13' 43.4"

Nearest town

Castlepollard

Grid Ref.

N 51014 70450

Map No.

41

Elevation a.s.l. (m)

96

Date of visit

Wednesday 5 September 2012

GPS Accuracy (m)

3
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The northwest gable of the St. Feichin's church. The projecting side walls on both sides carried the bargeboards of the roof.


St. Feichin, a holyman from co. Sligo, founded a monastery on the slope of Carrick Balor at Fore in 630. The monastery was the house of at least 300 monks by the year 665, when St. Feichin died of the Yellow Plague.
Today the only surviving building of that monastery is the St. Feichin's church, built around 900. It was a nave-only church, with a massive lintelled doorway to northwest (315°). On the lintel of this doorway there's a cross inscribed in a circle, the only decoration of the church. The west gable has antae, projecting segments of the side walls, used to support the roof.
In the 12th or 13th century the chancel was added and was connected to the nave with an archway that has been re-erected in 1934. A window in the southwest wall of the chancel was added in the 15th century.
The monastery was set to fire not less than ten times from its foundation to 1170, and eventually it was abandoned by the religious community.

The first time we came here was on June 15th, 2001.


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