Early Chritian Ireland

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Valery's Cross at Fassaroe, Bray
This cross was made in the 12th century.
Did you know.....
  • There are about 300 crosses in Ireland which are over 1,000 years old.
  • The early stone crosses were carved on flat stone slabs or pillars
  • Many early stone crosses were made from wood
  • Most of the big crosses were carved out of one big rock around the year 1100. This was the time of the Vikings and the Normans
  • Most of them show stories from the Bible carved on the rock. People would gather around the crosses to listen to monks explain about the life of Jesus. Most people could not read.
  • These later crosses are called High Crosses
  • The art on the High Crosses is like that on gold ornaments also made by the monks
  • An early cross can be seen at Fairy Hill in Bray and another at Fassaroe. There used to be an old church near Fairy Hill and the monks were buried at Fairy Hill. it was called Fairy Hill because the local people used to say that they could hear bells ringing in the graveyard and they thought it was the fairies.
  • The monk who built this church was Saran. He had trained as a monk with Kevin in Glendalough. The road by the church was called Bóthar Cill Saran and in English this is called Killarney Road.
  • The base of a High Cross was found at Oldcourt, in Bray