Irish High Crosses


Near the centre of Duleek village, Co Meath, near the derelict Church of Ireland, stands a small High Cross made of sandstone. As you go through the gates towards the Church the Cross is on your right hand side, it is only 1.82 metres high and very easy to walk passed. On the west face, pictured on the right, are figure sculptures, the easiest to identify being a crucifixion scene at the centre of the head. The Irish archaeologist Peter Harbison believes they are scenes illustrating the early life of the Virgin Mary.

Above is a detail from the south side showing a winged creature, the east face and sides of the cross has some beautifully inscribed geometrical designs.

West face

North side

The north side of the cross is shown on the left, bearing geometric decoration. The later St Kienan's church has been renovated and opened as a restaurant, around the back of this building is an earlier 13th century church. Inside the ruins is another cross head sitting inside a cross base and an effigial slab.

In recent years the area around the cross had been vandalised and the cross protected with some really ugly fencing, but I an glad to report that on a recent visit the area around the cross has been cleaned up and the fencing removed. There is also the remains of a large 15th century tower which was built into an even earlier round tower, traces of which can be seen in the image below.


The body of King Brian Boru killed in the battle of Clontarf 1014, rested here over night, on it's way to Armagh for burial.

Situated: About 8 kilometres south west of Drogheda in County Meath. From Drogheda take the R152 south after approx 7 kilometres take a left at the fork in the road sign posted Duleek, take a right turn at the small green in the centre of the town, the old Church of Ireland is about 100 metres down this road.

Group: North Leinster.

Google Map.

Discovery OS. Map 43: O 0452 6845.

Last Visit: April 2010.

Longitude: 6° 25' 8" W

Latitude: 53° 39' 19" N

Nearest High Crosses featured on this website

Termonfeckin 13 Kilometres. NE.

Monasterboice 17 Kilometres North.

Kells: 25 Kilometres WNW.

Dromiskin: 33 Kilometres S.





Photos: Jim Dempsey.

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