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Drum Cross Slab
 

County

Mayo

Coordinates

N 53° 45' 50.88"   W 009° 14' 04.5"

Nearest town

Ballinrobe

Grid Ref.

M 18601 80100

Map No.

31

Elevation a.s.l. (m)

43

Date of visit

Monday 10 June 2019

GPS Accuracy (m)

3
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The graveyard and the ruins of the church seen from the southeast.


The graveyard at Drum is apparently void of interest, but there are a few things that are worth a visit.
This was the seat of the Parish of Drum, which was of ecclesiastical importance in St. Patrick's time. The tradition has it that St. Patrick built an early timber church here in 440.
A few centuries later a stone church was built, but it fell into ruin in 1800's. Today only the south wall of this church remains.
Around the church ruins there are some ancient gravestones dating to the 1700's, along with many unmarked burials dating back to the foundation of the earliest church.
The site was originally enclosed within a circular stone wall of which only a segment survive to the south.

Between the south wall of the graveyard and the enclosure there is a burial mound of pre-Christian times locally known with the name of Druid's Grave.

In the adjacent field there's a stone about 70 centimetres by 60 centimetres with a footprint impressed on its top surface. This is said to be a footprint of St. Patrick. Unfortunately the footprint has been painted in dark green by someone who wanted it to be more visible.

The most interesting thing at this site is an early cross slab fragment used as a grave marker and mounted sideways. It can be seen to the east of the church ruins. Halfway up on the fragment there's the incision of a wheeled cross with a large rounded base. The upper half of the incised cross is missing, and the fragment has been worked to taper upwards. It is 41 centimetres wide at the base and only 18 centimetres at the top, and it's 67 centimetres high. The thickness of the slab goes from 13 centimetres to 9 centimetres. The incision is on the east (90°) side.


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