I'm not sure if I took an unusual approach or not, but I had visited the National Museum Of Ireland - Archaeology in Dublin before I sat foot at the ancient site known as the Hill of Tara or the nearby Boyne Valley. And I think, particularly for the Hill of Tara, seeing the results of the excavations there first was incredibly beneficial. Unlike Newgrange, standing atop the Hill of Tara, there's honestly not much to see. The landscape is beautiful and the views breath-taking, but what one sees above ground is precious little.
But it's an important site in Irish history both known and legendary. Because it's quite literally the high ground for miles to see, it's been an important spot to hold for thousands of years. In comparatively modern times, it was the honorific home of the high kings of Ireland. But, the gentle rolls and mounds you see are what tells us there was an even older history here. Before the high kings, there would have been a neolithic site similar to Newgrange here. It was wiped clean for newer structures later, and even today the whole site is listed as an endangered site.
And after seeing the results of earlier excavations, it's amazing to know how much history the Hill of Tara holds and probably still holds.
November 21st, 2012
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