Swords Castle

Map Reference: O182470 (3182, 2470)

The castle was built about 1200 as an episcopal manor. The entrance is through a large gatehouse which was originally vaulted.

There is a porter's room on the left and a priest's room on the right with remains of mid-13th century windows. The first floor is reached by a spiral stairway. Beyond it is a 14th century chapel. The two-storey building on the left has two stairways and some good vaulted rooms at the ground floor. There are remains of a large brick oven.

To the right of the gatehouse is a large rectangular hall. The castle has a large polygonal bawn with rectangular corner towers and good sections of allure and crenellations dating from the 15th century.

The large tower at the north corner is three storeys high. It was the residence of the Constable of the Castle. It is vaulted above the ground floor and in the east wall is a garderobe with latrine-chute. There is a spiral stairway in the south-west corner. A weekly court was held in the castle and Queen Elizabeth I gave the town municipal rights in 1578.

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