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Mythical Ireland

Round tower and West Cross, Monasterboice

Round tower and West Cross, Monasterboice

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The 10th century West Cross at Monasterboice, and the round tower. The West Cross is less famous than the nearby Muiredach's Cross, but stands taller at around 7m high. The crucifixion scene is on the west face, and indeed because it is to tall there is lots of iconography on the West Cross. The adjacent North Church is a small rectangular building measuring about 10m x 4m made mainly of greywacke, with the remains of two doorways and four windows. During grave digging in the 19th century in the small North Church (the remains of which are shown on the right of the photo),an urn burial in a cist was found, dating to the Bronze Age. So we can suggest that Monasterboice (the monastery of St. Buite) was sacred long before the arrival of Christianity in Ireland.

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