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Hello and Welcome to this weekend’s virtual walk.
On this virtual walk, Stephen has managed to find someone to walk with and it’s me, his nephew Jake Walsh, who’ll be describing this weekend’s Journey.
Today we’re in the beautiful County Kildare, just west of Dublin and near the East Coast of the Island, and we’re going to take you on a walk to visit the Moone High Cross.
This is a beautiful place and the entrance is tucked away on the side of the road. The weather today is clear and sunny, however it’s quite chilly, thankfully we’re wearing lots of layers so we’re well wrapped up and ready to go. This place is noticeably quiet, making it a suitable place for a peaceful walk.
As we start walking towards the High Cross, you’ll notice the beautiful colour of the leaves of the trees. Let me tell you a little more about the history of this place. Moone High Cross is found within the ruins of the early monastic site of Moone Abbey, believed to have been founded by St. Palladius in the 5th century.
Saint Palladius was the first bishop of the Christians in Ireland, even arriving before Saint Patrick. Saint Palladius wouldn’t have much time in this Monastery because he was banished back to Britain by the King of Leinster.
As we get closer to the Ruins of the Monastery, we notice several graves, showing that this was an important place for religions in Celtic and Early Christian Ireland. The light coming through the arches of the ruins is so tranquil and beautiful and we take care to admire it as we enter the ruins.
Upon our entrance to the ruins we could immediately see the imposing high cross towering over us.
The Moone High Cross is regarded as a masterpiece among granite crosses and dates from the 10th century AD. It is the second tallest in Ireland and is one of only 200 High Crosses to survive.
High Crosses were erected near entrances to monasteries or were commissioned by High Kings to show the close relationship they had to the church. They were never erected as grave markers.
The shape of this cross is quite unique, consisting of three parts. The upper part and the base were discovered in the graveyard of the abbey in 1835 and were re-erected by the Duke of Leinster in 1850. In 1893 the middle section was then discovered and the cross was finally reconstructed to its original size, now standing at nearly 18-feet tall or just over 7 metres tall. We could also admire the beauty of the artwork of the cross, with numerous Biblical events being hand-carved onto the cross.
As we admired the cross, we noticed that some of the carvings on the Cross were Biblical Stories, in fact, The name ‘Moone’ actually translates from ‘Maen Colmcille’ meaning ‘Colmcille’s property’. Scenes depicted on the cross and shaft include Daniel in the lion’s pit, the three children in the fiery furnace, and the miracle of the loaves and fishes. We were astonished at the skill of the carvings on the cross and how well preserved they were, we soon learned that since the carvings were buried for so long, they are in a remarkable state of preservation. The crosses have been recently cleaned and a modern plastic roof provides them with protection from the elements.
Moving on we saw fragments of other ancient Irish work and noticed a holy picture and money placed in an alcove in the ruins, just showing how religiously important this high cross is. We then strolled around the ruins, able to admire the beautiful natural beauty of the area.
We eventually met another little fellow who was also here to admire Irish History and Culture and after taking some photos with this very cute walking enthusiast, we walked towards the exit, taking in as much of the beautiful scenery as we could handle.
Hopefully you enjoyed this week’s virtual walk, I definitely enjoyed seeing Ireland’s rich culture, history and scenery on this walk with my Uncle Stephen. Stay well and see you next time. Jake
Oh and I must not forget that he asked me to remind you guys that our BLACK FRIDAY SALE is now on with FREE SHIPPING over $30 at www.connemaramarble.com #highcross #connemaramarble #virtualwalk #irelandwalking #enterpriseireland #bordfailte #tourismireland.
Please enter your contact details here and your question and I will answer it as soon as possible, many thanks. Stephen