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CIIC 32. Gowran, Co. Kilkenny

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© Nora White 2013-01-04

National Monuments Service Record Number: KK020-060007-

Site Type




Saint Marys late 13th century church on the site of an earlier monastery. The tower was inserted between the nave and chancel in the late middle ages. In the 19th century this tower was incorporated into the parish church which was built in place of the chancel and which now takes up about half of the building (heritageireland.ie).


Grit, 1.50m x 0.38m x 0.30m (Converted from Macalister 1945, 38). 'A large cross potent, crookedly set out, is cut on the original base of the inscribed face' (Macalister 1945, 38).


'Inscription cut, on two edges (up-up) and, `though chipped in places, on the whole in quite good condition'. Macalister records in detail that 'in the first line, the two ends of IM, IA, all of the Q except parts of Q125 and 2I345 are chipped away. The second MAQI is on the top of the stone, faint but traceable: its first two letters are chipped away. The ending of the second line of writing has been spalled away ... The first few letters of this line form a name, DIMAQA (the second A chipped off) which has nothing to do with MAQ or MAQI' (Macalister 1945, 38).

On the scanned model five notches (I of MAQI) are barely visible before the E of ERACIAS and possibly part of the final Q score. The first two notches of the I after the C in ERACIAS are relatively clear. Also, although there is no trace of the following MA, five partial scores (Q) can be made out on the top of the stone, followed by faint traces of at least three of the five notches of the final I. The vowels of DIMAQA are very unclear but the C of a possible MUCOI and at least one following vowel notch are discernible.







in the foundation of the chancel of the old church (Macalister 1945, 38) in the townland of Gowran and barony of Gowran. (GPS coordinates -7.064559, 52.628962)



Last recorded

On site in the rebuilt chancel. The present location of this stone may be accessed via the National Monuments Service Historic Environment viewer on www.archaeology.ie (Publicly accessible).

History of Recording

'G.V. du Noyer first noticed the inscription in 1849'. 'Discovered in the foundation of the chancel of the old church of Gowran, when it was rebuilt as the parish church. It lay prostrate for a long time in the ruined nave' (Macalister 1945, 38).


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