St Ciaran (or Kieran) (543) founded the great monastery here. He was a pupil of St Finnian of Clonard, of St Enda and of St Senan. The ‘little church’ (8C) Church of St Ciaran maybe his burial place. Part of the cathedral (Temple McDermot) may be contemporary with it. Temple Dowling has early stonework from 3 walls of an earlier oratory. Temple Doolin includes a pre-Norman oratory. There are 3 High Crosses, 2 Round Towers, many grave Slabs and an Ogham Stone. The Pilgrim’s way that crossed Ireland from Dublin along the Esker ridge ends at St Ciaran’s church.
St Ciaran’s Holy Well see www.megalithicireland.com/St Ciaran’s Holy Well, Clonmacnoise.
The 11C Shrine of the Stowe Missal, the Crozier of the Abbots of Clonmacnoise, and possibly the 12C Cross of Cong were made here. All are now in NMI.
OS: 47 010 307 marked
see: Clonmacnoise Co Offaly Duchas Heritage Service, O’Brien Stories from a Sacred Landscape ch 6