Friday, September 2, 2011

We are now on and Illaunlaughan, Portmagee

Just click on this link here: skelligclub

Illaunlaughan is a very small island in the Channel between Portmagee and Valentia Island.
The name could have two meanings, Oileán an Lóchán, the Island of dry grass or broken seaweed, or Island of Lochán, a saint that could be associated with the island.
Archeological excavations between 1992 and 1995 revealed well- dated material which proved the existence of a small monastery between the 7th and 9th century and subsequent use of the island as a graveyard for the communities of Portmagee and Valentia Island..
During the mid 7th to mid 8th century period three domestic huts and a small oratory were built with posts and sod , cut blocks of grassy turf, for the walls; the roofs being thatch with local material. Possibly two shrines for relics were erected at that time.
Later the existing sod oratory was replaced by a small drystone structure, no more than 1.2mx 0.8m and in the 8th to 9th century again by a drystone oratory. Also a new gable shrine was erected to house the relics from earlier graves.

all photos Canon 5d, 17-40 and 50mm macro,
©Michael Herrmann 2011

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