1993:172 - Boheh, Mayo

County: Mayo Site name: Boheh

Sites and Monuments Record No.: SMR 97:00601 Licence number: 93E0152

Author: Gerry Walsh, Road Design, Mayo County Council, Castlebar, Co. Mayo.

Site type: Rock art

ITM: E 497399m, N 778848m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 53.749146, -9.555615

This site, in the townland of Boheh, is located 6.5km south-south-west of Westport and has been designated a National Monument. The stone, known locally at St Patrick's Chair, lies directly on the Togher Pádraig/pilgrimage-way from Ballintubber Abbey to Croagh Patrick.

The stone was very overgrown and following representations from members of the Mayo and Westport Archaeological and Historical Societies the author was requested by Mayo County Council to clean up the site. A licence to excavate was granted by the OPW (in case any finds or features of archaeological importance were revealed). The clean-up was financed by Mayo County Council.

Two recent articles, both published in Cathair na Mart, the Journal of the Westport Historical Society, have attracted considerable attention to the stone. The first suggested the rock as a Neolithic or Bronze Age alignment for Croagh Patrick (Bracken and Wayman, 1992), while the second was a survey of the rock art itself (van Hoek, 1993). The stone is an isolated rock art site and the majority of the motifs are on sloping surfaces. Van Hoek places the Boheh stone in third place of importance among all known cup-and-ring sites in Ireland and Britain. A small number of previously unrecorded cup-and-ring engravings were uncovered during the recent clean-up.References:1.Bracken, G.G. and Wayman P.A., 1992. 'A Neolithic or Bronze Age Alignment for Croagh Patrick.' Cathair na Mart. Journal of the Westport Historical Society, Vol. 12, No. 1 1-11.2. van Hoek, M.A.M., 1993. 'The Prehistoric Rock Art of the Boheh Stone, Co. Mayo.' Cathair na Mart. Journal of the Westport Historical Society, Vol. 13, 1-15.