Cumann Seandalaiochta agus Staire Phort Lairge

Sunday, June 10, 2012

WAHS First Outing of 2012: Kells Priory, Co Kilkenny

After several days of torrential rain, our first outing of the year seemed to be doomed, however the Prior(s) of Kells must have looked favorably on our visit as we didn't have any rain while following Ben Murtagh around the old Augustinian Priory. We learned about the various phases of the site, and the lifestyle of the small community.
Founded at the end of the 12th century by Geoffrey Fitz Robert (brother-in-law to Strongbow and knight of William Marshall) the Priory succeeded an earlier church dedicated to St Kieran. Four Augustinian Canons were recruited from Cornwall and brought to Kells. Augustinians were allowed to received tithes and were permitted to serve as parish priests, as opposed to Cistercians who were not allowed to be close to towns or accept tithes.
Entering one of the towers 

Looking up: evidence of  floors, fireplaces, doors, windows and even 'window seats' 

The Chapter House

The South Tower had a dovecote inside (visible through the square opening) 
In the 15th century it became necessary to reinforce the defenses of the area and the seven towers we see today are proof of the strength of the work. Another feature is - the original rendering is still visible on some of  the walls.

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The Waterford Archaeological and Historical Society, Ireland.
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