HIGHLIGHTS / PLACES OF INTEREST
An historic village thought to have been established when the monastery was built by St Aidan (also known as St Mogue). Ferns has many ecclesiastical sites for the pilgrim just starting out on the route: St Mogues Well, St Edan’s Cathedral and the ruins of St Mary’s Abbey.
Find out more at https://fernsvillage.ie/
Father John Murphy Centre
At Boolavogue you will visit the Father John Murphy Centre. This is the farmstead where Father Murphy, the 1798 rebel leader, lived for many years. The Centre features his cottage, which is a fine example of an 18th Century vernacular building. This is situated in a restored farmyard that includes a cow house, pigsty, dairy, stable labourers’ lodgings and a range of farm machinery from the past. Open seasonally. Please check their Facebook page for current opening hours.
An extraordinary monument marking the 200th anniversary of the 1798 rebellion. The construction of a tulach or burial mound signified a link between the world of the living and the other world. A cleft through the mound but without adornment – nature provides the show with the equinox rising sun perfectly inline with the passageway.
Oulart, derived from the ancient word for orchard, is further represented by nine ancient Irish apple tree varieties planted in 2014.
Walk through the pathway and play with the beautiful acoustics in the enclosed space.
Father Murphy Centre
Father Murphy Centre
St Mogue's Well
Pilgrims at Tulach a'tSolais
Dermot MacMurrough Stone
Dermot MacMurrough was the 12th-century King of Leinster who appealed to the Normans to help settle an Irish dispute between Kings. In 1153, he abducted the wife of Tiernan O’Ruark, King of Breifne in the Northern part of Ireland. A bitter feud ensued, and in 1166 Dermot was driven from Ireland.
King Henry II of England then granted Dermot permission to enlist aid in restoring his kingdom from the Anglo-Norman lords of south Wales. His most notable aid (in return for Dermot’s daughter Aoife) came from the Earl of Pembroke, nicknamed Strongbow.
In 1169, the Norman invasion of Ireland began. In the years that followed, the cultural assimilation of the Norman settlers was such that the Normans became known as “more Irish than the Irish themselves”.
Many centuries ago, Ferns was known as the place of the Alder tree. The Alder tree was considered to be a magical tree and was sacred to the Druids. They believed it could help them access the Otherworld.
But even in this world there is something very special about the Alder tree which is a symbiotic relationship between a bacterium called Frankia and the alder. Frankia creates nitrogen-fixing nodules within the root system of the Alder and this then improves the soil around them. This allows the Alder to grow in poor terrain or very wet conditions where there is little soil.
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