Sunday, 27 January 2013

Castledermot High Cross South

Moving on to the South high cross again constructed from granite in the 9th century is by far a more visually pleasing Cross although it lacks the amount of detail contained on its neighbor  The Head also contains a crucifixion scene whilst David, Daniel, Isaac, Anthony & Paul are shown on the arms of the cross. This time the Adam & Eve scene is located on the shaft. There are numerous animals depicted on the base.

 More biblical scenes are depicted on its west face with some more inspiring geometric designs and a blank base on the east face. The East face is my personal favorite  perhaps because of the fact is shows no religious iconography and solely concentrates on the pure Celtic designs of our pre Christian ancestors. A truly awe inspiring cross, this is well worth a visit.

Just off to the right of the pathway as you enter the churchyard lies what looks like an un-decorated third cross base.  Now researching this stone was impossible as there is practically no mention of its existence. The stone base whilst also made from granite is dimensionally smaller than the other two bases and is contains no decoration. Now I guess without supporting evidence, we can only speculate as to its history or purpose. Initially I taught maybe it was a failed attempt at erecting one of the other high crosses, especially as the shaft of the North cross does not exactly fit its base. But taking into account the size of the two high crosses it is unlikely that this base would have been made for either of them. This would therefore lead me to believe that  there was possibly  a third High Cross on the grounds which once stood here but was either destroyed, stolen  or is as yet to be discovered? Whatever story lies behind this interesting stone shall for now at least remain a mystery!

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