Irish graveyard yields secrets of ancient world





Residents of the village of Nobber, north Meath, in the Republic of Ireland, stumbled upon archaeological treasure when they decided to clean up an old graveyard.

Now they are hoping that tombs in the shape of Celtic crosses, dating back 1100 years, will put them on the map, alongside such famous archaeological sites as Newgrange.

In the course of cleaning up the wind-swept cemetery, they found small concrete tomb stones, like Celtic crosses, some less than a foot high.

Graves, they now know, that date back to the 10th century.

Archaeologists, like Professor George Eogan, an expert on Newgrange, are excited by the discovery.

He said it proves that this north Meath townland with its own monastery, was significant in the relatively early Christian times.

"It certainly, was an outstanding place around the 10th century. It was one of the leading sites in Ireland at that earlier period," Professor Eogan said.

But the small weather-beaten tombs, with their fading etched marks were not all that was found in the clean-up.

Local people also discovered evidence of a church built in the 12th century and medieval tomb stones lying flat on the ground with elaborate designs and concrete carvings of kneeling men.


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