12th Century Romanesque Font

The rectangular font at Rathaspick is one of only three romanesque fonts present in County Wexford. The other two are at Fethard and Carrick-on Bannow. All three fonts are carved from Dundry stone. It was imported into Ireland after the Anglo-Norman invasion of 1169. The stone was mainly used throughout the southeast of Ireland. The stonemasons who travelled to Ireland, with the Normans, were more familiar with this type of limestone. It is believed the three fonts in Wexford, may have been carved by the same stonemason.

The motifs on the Fethard and Carrick fonts are very similar to each other. They are dated to the end of the 12th century, the Rathaspick font is believed to be earlier. The stone, which was drawn from Dundry hill in Somersetshire, was also used to frame the windows of many Cathedrals and churches along the southeast coast, stretching from Cloyne in County Cork, to Drogheda in Louth. As well as the two Christ Church Cathedrals in Dublin and Waterford, it was used at Greyfriars Abbey, Waterford, Inistioge Priory, Dunbrody Abbey, Duiske Abbey, Tintern Abbey, Wicklow Abbey and St Mary's Church, New Ross.

Situated: At Johnstown Castle, Agricultural Museum. From Wexford Town head south on the R730. After 1 kilometre turn right for Murntown. Go straight through the roundabout after Rathaspeck Manor. The entrance to the Johnstown Estate is on your left about 700 metres after the roundabout.

Discovery Map 77. T0207 1668. Last visit July 2019.

Longitude: 6° 30' 14" W

Latitude: 52° 17' 33" N

Google Map

Photos: Jim Dempsey.

Previous-----Home-----Next Page