Kilteel Church

Map Reference: N996222 (2996, 2222)

Kilteel was the site of an early Irish monastery, Cell cele Chriost, but very little is known about it. Early in the 13th century a preceptory of the Knights Hospitallers was founded by Maurice FitzGerald. In 1527 it was leased to Thomas Alen and his wife, Mary. A 51 year lease was granted in 1542.

The present remains consist of a ruined nave-and-chancel church with fragments of a richly decorated chancel arch of three orders. The capitals are fairly typical examples of Romanesque art with heads having intricately entwined beards and hair.

The columns have figure sculpture and represent the only instance of such sculpture in this part of an Irish Romanesque church.

The subjects include Adam & Eve, Samson & Delilah, and David & Goliath. There is also an early cross slab and a stone with a small bullaun.

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