1991:053 - Site bounded by St Maelruan, Dublin

NMI Burial Excavation Records

County: Dublin Site name: Site bounded by St Maelruan

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

Author: Margaret Gowen, 5 St Catherine

Site type: Medieval

ITM: E 709281m, N 727643m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 53.287817, -6.360993

This site was assessed in three stages between August 1990 and October 1991. The assessment revealed that St Maelruan's Graveyard is bounded on its west and south-west sides (the area tested) by two concentric ditches some 6-7m and 11-12m wide respectively outside the existing enclosure bank. The ditches were not excavated, their edges were simply located and defined for the purposed of the site assessment.

The area to the west of the enclosure was tested in a dense grid of slit trenches, none of which yielded any archaeological features, deposits or finds.

To the south-east of the enclosure the area tested revealed evidence for medieval activity, but no structures or obvious habitation area. Two linear medieval ditches were revealed, one substantial ditch over 4m wide and up to 2m deep, running in a south-easterly direction, away from the enclosure as far as (and no further than) a second smaller ditch 1.7m wide and just 1m deep, running north-south. On the basis of the recovery of Dublin Tempered Ware pottery from the fill of both features, they are tentatively dated to c. 14th century. It was thought that the medieval borough boundary might run through this portion of the site, but there was no evidence for it. While the larger ditch is morphologically similar to that revealed by Elizabeth O'Brien (see Excavations 1990, 29), it did not cross the entire site and its alignment did not relate to the supposed borough boundary ditch revealed nearby.

A number of smaller gullies crossed the areas tested. These were interpreted as having an agricultural derivation.