Monasterboice

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Ruins at Monasterboice
Muiredach's Cross

The historic ruins of Monasterboice (Irish: Mainistir Bhuithe) are of an early Christian settlement in County Louth in Ireland, north of Drogheda.[1] It was founded in the late 5th century by Saint Buithe who died around 521,[2] and was an important centre of religion and learning until the founding of nearby Mellifont Abbey in 1142.[1]

The site houses two churches built in the 14th century or later and an earlier round tower, but it is most famous for its 10th century high crosses.

The round tower is about 28-metres tall, and is in very good condition, although it is not possible to go inside. The passage of time has laid down layers of earth so now the doorway is almost at ground level. The monastery was burned in 1097.[1]

The 5.5-metre Muiredach's High Cross is regarded as the finest high cross in the whole of Ireland. It is named after an abbot, Muiredach mac Domhnaill, who died in 923 and features biblical carvings of both the Old and New Testaments of the Bible. The North and West crosses are also fine examples of this kind of structure, but these have suffered much more from the effects of the weather. A copy of the main cross is held in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.

Poet and historian Flann Mainistrech, Flann of Monasterboice, was lector here.

The name Monasterboice is a part-anglicization of the Irish name Mainistir Bhuithe meaning "monastery of Buithe". It was formerly anglicized as Monasterboye and Monasterboyse. Boice is the English version of the Latin name Boecius, which was adopted as the equivalent of the Irish Buithe.[3]

Naomh Mairtin CLG[edit]

Monasterboice is home to Naomh Mairtin, a senior gaelic football club from County Louth. The club was founded in the year 1957. The club currently has two senior inter-county players, Craig Lynch and Sam Mulroy. The club's most known players are JP Rooney and Michael Fanning. In 2016 the club's U18 football team made history becoming the first team from the club to win the Louth Minor Football A Championship by beating Newtown Blues by a scoreline of 4-14 to 1-09.[1] Not only this but they went on to win the U18 division 1A League aswell, becoming the first team to win the "Minor Double" The club's senior football team has yet to win the Louth Senior Football Championship, reaching the semi-final 5 times since the club won the Louth Intermediate Championship in 1988.

Picture of Naomh Mairtin crest

Albion Rovers[edit]

Monasterboice is home to Albion Rovers FC, a soccer club in the area. The club has numerous facilities including 3 full size pitches, an all-weather pitch and 'Eddie's Place', a shop in memory of former Albion legend, Eddie Maher.

Bars and restaurants[edit]

There one bar and restaurant situated in Monasterboice. The "Monasterboice Inn", owned by the Donegan family. Arguably one of the best in Louth and one of the best in the province. Monasterboice Inn has fed many famous people like Lisa Kudrow of Friends and Rory Best of the IRFU. It is situated on the R132 right next to Naomh Mairtin football pitches.

Education[edit]

There are two primary schools situated in Monasterboice, no post-primary schools and no third level institute. One primary school is situated in Harestown, Monasterboice called St. Patrick's National School. The second Primary school in Monasterboice is situated in Tenure. It is called Scoil Naomh Buithe. It is a mixed primary school and has 219 pupils.

Town Twinning[edit]

Monasterboice is currently twinned with a town in Scotland called Letham.

Religion[edit]

Monsterboice is a mostly Roman Catholic village with a church in both Tenure and Harestown. Father Hickey and Father Mulvihil are the priests of these churches. Its in the diocese of Armagh and Eamon Martin is the archbishop of Armagh. Its clear to see that Monasterboice is predominantly Christian because of the very famous monastery and one of the most well kept high crosses in Ireland. Monasterboice is also home to other religions but to find a pace of worship you would have to leave Monasterboice.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Hayes, Holly (March 20, 2010). "Monasterboice". sacred-destinations.com. Retrieved 2010-03-21. 
  2. ^ F.J. & K.D. Schorr. "Monasterboice High Crosses, Co. Louth". highcrosses.org. Retrieved 2010-03-21. 
  3. ^ Placenames Database of Ireland (see archival records)
Taken from the door of the Round Tower
An image of the famous 'West Cross', Monasterboice. Although less famous than St. Muiredach's Cross on the same site, the West Cross is one of the tallest of its kind in Ireland.

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External links[edit]

Coordinates: 53°46′39.53″N 6°25′02.43″W / 53.7776472°N 6.4173417°W / 53.7776472; -6.4173417