Hill of Tara, Ireland: A site of importance spanning about 1800 years.
The Hill of Tara is a compex site with a long history. Summary information as follows:
- Located midway between Navan and Dunshaughlin in central County Meath, about 40 minutes north of Dublin.
- Contains a mix of graves, tombs and temples built over a long period ranging from the fourth millennium BC to the 15th century AD.
- A historic power and religious base centred on the Kingship of Tara.
- Each succeeding generation and culture from the fourth millennium onwards built on the work of that which already existed.
- The oldest monument on the site is a passage tomb of Dumha na nGiall which dates from the third millennium BC. This was excavated 1955-9 and then restored. There are some forty Bronze Age burials inserted into the soil mantle and passage.
- Later in the third millennium a 200 m long cursus-like enclosure was built down the northern flank of the hill,
- Next, two great henges were built just off the hill, one of which measures 270m in diameter.
- More than 25 barrows and ring-ditches occur on Tara, mostly from the Bronze-Age.
- A hengiform enclosure extending to 1000m in circumference encircles the crown of the hill. This dates from the Iron-Age ( 1st century BC).
- Tech Cormaic, a bivallate ring fort is probably the latest earthwork on Tara.
Video clip of site