Early History of The Curragh

Early History of The Curragh

Used as meeting site during Pre-Christian societies, the Curragh is shrouded in a mist of mythology. The hill north of the Curragh is called the Hill of Allen (Almhain) and is the meeting place of the mythical Fianna. Legend has it that in about 480 AD, when St Brigid became intent on founding a monastery in Kildare town, she asked the High King of Leinster for the land on which to build it. The king scoffed at her request and granted her as much land as her cloak would cover. St Brigid then placed her cloak on the ground to cover the entire Curragh plain.

On 1 April 1234, Richard Marshal, 3rd Earl of Pembroke lost a battle at the Curragh against a group of men loyal to King Henry III of England. Marshal was wounded in the battle, and died at his castle at Kilkenny on 16 April.

It was a common site for mustering the armies of the Pale. During the 1798 Rebellion there was a massacre in the Curragh at Gibbet Rath. The Curragh Camp is now located there, where the Irish Defence Forces undergo training.

Today, the Curragh is a fraction of its original size and admission to the military area is restricted.

Sourced from Wikipedia.

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