2004:0140 - CAHIRCALLA MORE (Site AR127), Clare

NMI Burial Excavation Records

County: Clare Site name: CAHIRCALLA MORE (Site AR127)

Sites and Monuments Record No.: N/A Licence number: 04E0028

Author: Kate Taylor, TVAS Ireland Ltd.

Site type: Burnt spread and Field boundary

Period/Dating: Multi-period

ITM: E 532665m, N 675539m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 52.826607, -8.999140

Eight discrete excavation areas were opened in a large field straddling the edge of a deep bog on the N18 Ennis bypass. Seven small burnt-stone spreads were excavated (all less than 10m across); none were associated with troughs or hearths. All the spreads were composed of limestone with some sandstone and were thin (typically less than 0.1m thick); there was no evidence of hearths or of cut features such as troughs. The low-lying location and the presence of alluvial silts both above and below several of the stone deposits suggests that the use of the site may have been seasonal, with the bog being flooded in the winter months. The small volume of material in each spread indicates occasional use, perhaps even a single episode.

It is not clear what specific activity the spreads represent; however, it is likely that the stone was used to heat water in a similar manner to fulachta fiadh, with the lack of troughs perhaps indicating that the water was held in portable containers.

A post-medieval field boundary ditch was also investigated.

Ahish, Ballinruan, Crusheen, Co. Clare