Field Trip to Clonmacnois.
went on a trip to Clonmacnois. It is just across the river from our school but
we had to go to Shannonbridge to cross the Shannon and get to Clonmacnois. It
was a misty day but when we arrived there we went into a small theatre to watch
We learned a lot from the film. We learned that
Clonmacnois grew up at a cross-roads of the Shannon and Esker Riada. Eskers were
formed in the last Ice Age. When the ice melted a pile of gravel and stones was
left and people found it easier to travel along this esker as it went through
the bog and made a good road.
People crossed the
Shannon at Clonmacnois to go to Tara the seat of the High King. Munster men left
their boats at Clonmacnois when they were going to Tara. In the last few years
archaeological divers found a bridge under the water at Clonmacnois. We found
out that the monastery was a busy place. Two thousand people lived there at one
Clonmacnois was the greatest school in Europe, a center for Art,
litrature and learning. The monastry was 10 acres in area. Vikings, Normans and
the Irish put it on fire 15 times. The Normans raided it 6 times, the Vikings
raided it 8 times and the Irish raided it an incredible 27 times. Each time it
In 1552 the English garrison from Athlone
raised it to the ground. Everything was carried off. It remained a burial
ground. It remained a place of pilgrimage. People go there to an open-air mass
on St. Ciarans Feast Day in September. We go too but this was our first time
inside the visitors center.
The Southern Cross has a lot of Celtic design
on it and circles called bosses.
North Shield is shaped like a stake. This the oldest of the three monuments.It
has no top. It has got interwined animals and some more Celtic design.
realized that the crosses were getting worn by the rain and weather so they
decided to move the crosses. This was a huge job as the crosses are 12 feet
high. They got a crane and lifted the crosses into place. I would not like that
job in case they fell. When the crosses were in place they built three modern
huts made of stone around them.
they thought people would still like to see
the crosses outside so they built replicas of the crosses and put them
outside. The first cross they made was carved by a sculptor and was not exact
enough so they decided to make moulds
and make new crosses from a mixture of sandstone and resin. The new crosses look
just like the old ones .In the picture you can see Martin and Stephen beside the
Cross of the Scriptures replica and behind them you can see the new modern huts
where the old crosses are on display.