St Brendan’s house - also called the priests’ house - is medieval. The religious attached to the nearby Kilmalkedar probably lived here.

3,000 YEAR STORY IN 300 METERS

On Radio Kerry this Saturday morning (October 31) from 9 to11 Frank Lewis visits seven archaeological sites within 300 meters of Nora Anne’s holiday home at Kilmalkedar – with Smerwick Harbour and the three sisters  headlands out in front and .Brandon Mountain behind. Archaeologist Michael O Coileain, stonemason Breandan O Muircheartaigh .and  Basket guide Tomas O Luing tell stories of three or more thousand years…

  • Kilmalkedar the preeminent   church on the Dingle Peninsula    
  • A holy well and cross slab that were important before  Christianity, in early  Christian times, in dark Cromwellian days and later
  •  A large flat rock where eight basins were carved and worn out by whole families grinding out their grain
  • The Gallerus-style St Brendan’s Oratory a quiet place of prayer
  • The five circular buildings in Cathair Deargain stonefort might have housed an extended family of up to 40 
  • The 14th century home of the  Chancellor of the Diocese of Ardfert has a perfectly preserved piazza-styled oven
  • The medieval St Brendan’s House where the monks from the nearby church lived
  • Finishing back at Kilmalkedar- the alphabet stone, ogham/contract stone, sun dial and huge stone cross 

All within  300 meters.   Imagine what you could see in five kilometers?

   

  • The cosan na Naomh/Saints’ Path that runs from Ventry to the top of mount Brandon. The route is marked by the an image of an medieval pilgrim.
  • Families knelt around this rock each member using a round stone to grind grain in these stone basins. This bullaun stone may date as far back as the 5th century
  • The Kilmalkedar church site also includes an early Christian-period sundial, and from the medieval period a huge carved cross, an ogham/contract stone and an alphabet stone
  • The 12th century Kilmalkedar was the most important church in the Dingle Peninsula .The western entrance archway and this internal arch are very decoratively carved.
  • The 8th or 9th century, dry-stoned, corballed St Brendan’s Oratory/Teampaillin Breanainn close-by Kilmalkedar. A quiet place of prayer. It is in the same style as nearby Gallarus Oratory but is 300 years older.
  • St Brendan’s cross slab and holy well with Kilmalkedar church in the background. Holy wells pre-dates Christianity.
  • The 300 meter drystone wall along the avenue to St Brendan’s Oratory/Teampaillin Breanainn.
  • St Brendan’s house - also called the priests’ house - is medieval. The religious attached to the nearby Kilmalkedar probably lived here.
  • The 14th century home of the Chancellor/Diocesan Secretary of the Diocese of Ardfert includes an elaborate bread oven
  • 40 or 50 members of an extended family may have lived in this 8th or 9th century Caherdorgan Stone fort’s five cells surrounded by a strong circular embankment. The largest dry stone walled clochans has an entrance to a souterrain/underground passage.

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