1977-79:0055 - Balrenny, Meath

NMI Burial Excavation Records

County: Meath Site name: Balrenny

Sites and Monuments Record No.: N/A Licence number:

Author: G. Eogan, University College, Dublin

Site type: Souterrain

ITM: E 698230m, N 776917m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 53.732644, -6.511242

This souterrain came to light during earthmoving in the course of which portions of the chamber and passage were removed. It consists of a passage with at least five lintels and a beehive chamber. Both passage and chamber were cut into the underlying shale bedrock. The full extent of the passage was not determined because the entrance area was badly damaged
– what survives is covered by a dump of bulldozer spoil. The investigated portion of the passage is 3.66m. long, and has an average basal width of 95cm. The average height of the passage was 1. lOin. The lintels of the passage roof were placed in step fashion to accommodate the slope in ground level from the entrance area down to the chamber.
‘The chamber was roughly circular with an average diameter of 3.40m. It survived to a height of 2.08m. The floor of the chamber was bed-rock above which was a layer of dark grey clay, Scm. thick on average. This layer extended into a part of the passage. It produced a bronze ringed pin and some pieces of wood. Above this was a layer of clean grey silt, on top of which an iron pan had formed. The silt layer had a maximum thickness of 58cm. and its accumulation indicates that the souterrain remained unused from the Early Christian period to the present.
Eogan, G. (1977)]. Roy. Soc. Antiq. Ireland, 107, 96-100.