Rich Celtic Heritage
Considering its size, this little peninsula holds a surprising wealth of Celtic heritage that spans millennia. It includes...
Killaghtee Cross, C. AD589
The Killaghtee Cross is a significant piece of Ireland's Celtic
heritage. This early Irish Celtic cross was a precursor to the elaborately crafted Celtic
High Crosses, for which Ireland became famous with the adoption of Celtic Christianity.
Killaghtee Cross is widely believed to mark the grave of Saint Aédh Mac Bricc.
Saint Aédh was an early Irish Christian Bishop and reputed miracle worker. His royal lineage was of the powerful Celtic High King of Ireland, Niall of the Nine Hostages.
Saint Aédh was the High King's great, great, great grandson through Niall's son Fiachu.
The Killaghtee Cross is located in a small, ancient graveyard in the Northwest of St. John's Point peninsula. The saint is believed to have established a monastic site there. The descriptive Celtic meaning hidden within the anglicized name of the locality - 'Killaghtee', seems to support that claim...
The name 'Killaghtee' comes from 'Cill Leacht Aédh', the locality's original name, in the Celtic language of Gaelige. It means 'church and tomb of Aédh'.
The Killaghtee Cross is inscribed with a large Maltese-style cross.
Just beneath the Maltese cross, to the right, is a Celtic Trinity knot, one of the best known Irish Celtic symbols. The Trinity knot Celtic symbol is associated with Saint Brigid, one of Ireland's three patron saints along with Saint Patrick, and Saint Columba of Iona Scotland who was born in Donegal.
Megalithic Triple Wedge Tomb
Wedge tombs are believed to date from the late Neolithic to mid Bronze
Age, and are approximately 4,000 to 4,500 years old.
Megalithic triple wedge tomb near Dunkineely. Some kerbstones visible bottom left
Wedge tombs are
apparently unique to Ireland.
This type of tomb usually contains only one solitary burial chamber
(gallery). However, the wedge tomb just north of Saint John's Point peninsula contains a total of three burial chambers.
It is the only triple wedge tomb known to exist.
The tomb was originally covered by a mound of stones called a 'cairn'. Several of the cairn's kerbstones are still in place.
This pre history tomb is well
concealed in woodland behind a small car park, about one and a half
kilometers North of Dunkineely village.
Ruins of Celtic warrior chief Niall Mór Mac Sweeney's castle
Additional Heritage Treasures
In addition to the above, you can also find...
- Celtic warrior chief *Niall Mór Mac Sweeney's castle ruins
- Two ruined churches
- A deserted 'famine' village
- A pair of megalithic standing stones
- A World War II 'Eire' sign in stones that guided allied planes
*Niall Mór Mac Sweeney's gravestone is preserved in Killybegs.