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CIIC 206. Kilcoolaght East I, Co. Kerry

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© COPYRIGHT, 2009 2015-08-19

© COPYRIGHT, 2009 2015-08-19

© COPYRIGHT, 2009 2015-08-19

National Monuments Service Record Number: KE065-003002-

Site Type

Burial ground



'Kilcoolaght Burial Ground/Cill Chuallachta (KE065-003001-): This site is located N of Macgillycuddy's Reeks on slightly elevated ground, a short distance W of the Finglas river. Described as a 'fort' and a 'burial ground' in the OSNB (Killorglin, 38), it is depicted on the first edition of the OS map as a small circular enclosure. It was described by Brash (1879, 228) as 'slightly raised above the level of the field, and about fifteen feet in diameter; it had evidently been much larger, but has been encroached on . . . [It] is an irregular circle without any fence, and stuck full of Dallans, from 12 in. to 4 ft. in height, several of which are inscribed’. Brash also recorded a tradition that a church (KE065-003003-) formerly stood on a rectangular area of untilled ground ‘a few yards from the cilleen'. No trace of this church is now apparent' (O'Sullivan et al 1996, no. 950).


Sandstone, 0.76m x 0.24m x 0.20m (O'Sullivan et al 1996, no. 950). Macalister (1945, 201-2) recorded the height as 2 feet 11 inches (89cm) and that the top of the stone was broken off. This stone also displays V-sectioned grooves on the face between the angles of the second inscription (see also CIIC 209). These 'hone scores' or long narrow cuts in the stone are not unlike those found on the ogham stones at Ratass, Co. Kerry; Church Island, Co. Kerry; CIIC 19. Colbinstown I, Co. Kildare; CIIC 57. Greenhill I, Co. Cork and CIIC 35. Tullaherin, Co. Kilkenny (see Newman 2009, 433-4).


The first of two inscriptions (up-down) consists of 'boldly cut scores' and is missing some letters where the top has broken off. 'The H-halves of the 2R1234 and the whole of the remaining fifth score of the same letter, are broken away 'Macalister (1945, 201-2) .

The second inscription (up-up) is more 'finely cut'. '4T23 and anything that followed it are broken off the stone'. Macalister (1945, 201-2) also notes that in the last name 'the side-scores are interchanged... Someone noticed this and set himself to correct it, by the rather futile device of suggesting an inversion of the [first name, by means of] a prolongation in finer lines of the H-scores on the B-surface'. The initial A and some of the N scores of ANM, as well as the final N of TIGIRN, were below ground level in August 2015. Macalister's initial C looks more like a T, with only three scores evident, but perhaps this is due to weathering. There is space before the vowel notches for another score. In fact, it appears as if there are five rather than four vowels.


First inscription: [AN]M VIRR[ACC(?)]/ANNI TIGIR[N]

Second inscription: C̣/̣ṬẸDATTOQA MAQI/ VEDELMETṬ[O(?)]


First inscription: 'name/inscription of Ferchán/Fírchán? of Tigern?''
Second inscription: 'of Cétadach? son of Fedelmid/Feidlimid'


  • If no letters have been lost where the top of the stone has broken off, the personal name following ANM in the first inscription may be VIRRANNI (earlier VIRAGNI as in CIIC 70. Ballyhank, Co. Cork; later *Ferán? (fer `man') or *Fírán? (fír `true') McManus 1991, 107). It seems likely however, given the angle of the stone that remains, that some letters have been lost. For example, there may have been space enough following the remainder of the second R for -A- followed by -C- or -CC- on the top of the stone giving VIRRAC(C)ANNI (cf. CIIC 135. Mount Music, Co. Cork: MINNACCANNI, OIr. Mincháin, see McManus 1991, 108) with a prolific -AC suffix (ferach 'having men' (or 'verocious'? eDIL) or fírach 'having truth') followed by the diminutive suffix giving OIr. *Fercháin or *Fírcháin.

  • Regarding TIGIRN, it is not clear whether this should be read as a name ('of Tigern' i.e. 'son of T') or a title ('lord'). Compare VORTIGURN on CIIC 297. Knockboy VI, Co. Waterford and CIIC 97. Ballyhank I, Co. Cork, where it is preceeded by MAQI (for + tigurn 'overlord', OIr. Foirtchern McManus 1991, 105).

  • The first name in the second inscription (CEDATTOQA) is difficult to be sure of, especially as the initial consonant is unclear, but it has been suggested (Fios Feasa, Multimedia CD ROM, 2002) that it may be identifiable with the name Cétadach ('first leader'?), which is attested later.

  • Although the scores in the final name of the second inscription read TELEDMEVVI, an identifiable and well-attested name (VEDELMET[TO]) appears when they are inverted, suggesting a relatively common error on the part of the lapidary (cf. CIIC 145. Arraglen, Co. Kerry). This name is also found in an ogham inscription from Cloghabrody (Thomastown), Co. Kilkenny: VEDDELLEMETTO MUCI LOGIDDEAS AVVI MUNICCONA and Knockmahon II, Co. Waterford: VEDILIMETO MAQI TOQITAQ. 'The name of the commemorand is undoubtedly an early form of Fedelmid/Feidlimid, an i-stem derivative of the female name Fedelm (Latinised and Anglicised Fidelma). The third E of VEDDELLEMETTO, therefore, may be erroneous (as Fedelm, Fedelmid cannot come from *Vedelm-, which would have given *Feidelm, with lenited m) [unless] we may have to do here with a svarabhakti vowel' (McManus 1991, 75, n 6. 28). It is noteworthy that this instance of the name does not have a vowel between the L and M.



along with a number of other ogham stones and fragments in a small area of a field (recorded as a burial ground) in the townland of Kilcoolaght East and barony of Dunkerron North. (GPS coordinates -9.745808, 52.073955)


Find location possibly original site

Last Recorded

In a modern enclosure in a large field on private land. The present location of this stone may be accessed via the National Monuments Service Historic Environment viewer on www.archaeology.ie.

History of Recording

According to Brash (1879, 228), the site was visited on several occasions by Windele and by Brash himself in 1869.


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