Monastic Site Abbey Island
Archaeological investigation took place on Abbey Island when the grounds around Aghamore Abbey were to be extended. In one trial trench a well, 70cm. in height, was uncovered. This was covered by a capstone (1.25m. in length and its width was exposed for 25-60cm.) and uses the bedrock as a natural basin. At the east side of the natural basin there are 4-5 courses of dry stone walling and 3 on the south side. At a higher level a layer of midden material, 30-60cm. in thickness, contained a sherd of 13th – 14th century green glazed pottery. Excavation also exposed a wall which has a maximum height of 1 .45m. and varies from 60-67cm. in width. Both sides are plastered with a mortar surface. This wall was uncovered for at least 1 2m. and curves from a north-west to a south-east direction. A trampled area pre-dating the construction of the wall covers some stones which may belong to a structure earlier than the wall. This area awaits completion of the excavation.
The abbey of Derrynane, or Aghamore Abbey, was probably founded in the 6th century. It became a dependency of Dairinis, Youghal, in the Middle Ages. The wall and well uncovered may be part of a settlement here in medieval or post-medieval times.
Catryn Power, for National Parks & Monuments Branch, Office of Public Works
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