Gleann Cholm Cille/Glencolmcille

Station 9, Clo'n Aoineach (The stone of the gathering)

After walking down the road from Farranmacbride court tomb, you will see station 9 on your right hand side. It is a holed pillar stone decorated on the north-west face. There are three circular motifs, connected by an incised gutter. The circle at the top is the width of the stone and inside it is an equal armed geometric cross, the perforation is in the centre of the cross. Traditionally engaged couples would stand one either side of the stone and entwine their fingers through the hole. This was a symbol of their engagement and the ceremony would be watched by a large gathering of people (Aonach). Here the pilgrim circles the cairn three times whilst praying. They would then put their back to the 1.9 metre tall pillar stone and renounce the World, the Flesh and the Devil.

It is also said that if the pilgrims peer through the hole they may get a glimpse of heaven. This is not surprising as the views looking down the valley from here are simply beautiful. I would recommend visiting early in the morning to see the decoration in the best light. From here walk south to the bottom of the road and turn left for station 10.

Situated: From the church head east along straid and take the first left. travel about 200 metres along this road. Station 9 should be visible on the left hand side of this road.

Discovery Map 10. G 5363 8519. Last visit Jun 2010.

Longitude: 8° 43' 10" W

Latitude: 54° 42' 45" N

Google Map.

Photos: Jim Dempsey

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