Clogher Hillfort

Map Reference: H539514 (2539, 3514)

Location: On a hilltop a short distance S of Clogher Cathedral, best approached along a pathway through the grounds of the former Bishop's Palace

This is a complex structure which may have been started in the Late Bronze Age. It covers an area of about 2 hectares and consists mainly of a large mound with some defensive ramparts, particularly on the north side. The original structure may have been a simple bank with an external fosse. The other defences may have been added when a ringfort was built over the structure in the 7th century. Clogher is considered to be a royal site of the Airgialla, who were originally a subject tribe of the Ulaid.

They later changed allegiance to the Ui Neill and by the beginning of the 9th century they ruled over large portions of the north midlands. Just to the south of the main structure is a small triangular mound which is thought to be an inauguration mound.

Beyond this is a small ring barrow.

Excavation in the 1970s revealed several items of decorative metalwork as well as shards of Mediterranean wine amphora. The occurrence of such rich artefacts reinforce the idea that Clogher was a royal site.

Some of the defending banks and ditches

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