clt-Newgrange

Newgrange: is a prehistoric monument and UNESCO World Heritage Site in County Meath, Ireland. Archaeologists classified Newgrange as an ancient temple, a place of astrological, spiritual, religious and ceremonial importance.

Just before 9 AM on the morning of the winter solstice, December 21, the Newgrange passage is pierced by a shaft of sunlight which illuminates a stone basin at the end of the passage and lights up a series of intricate spiral carvings in the rock.

The chamber is brilliantly lit for around 17 minutes and this solar display lasts for five days around the time of the Winter Solstice. Newgrange is famous for its snow white quartz from the Wicklow Mountains which, make up a portion of this striking structure. It is part of the site covering over 1,900 acres and contains around 40 passage graves, as well as other prehistoric sites and features including the Bru na Boinne or Palace of the Boyne.

The most well-known sites within Bru na Boinne are the impressive passage graves of Newgrange, Knowth and Dowth, the triad famous for their significant collections of megalithic art. Newgrange contains various examples of abstract Neolithic rock art carved onto it which provide decoration.

These carvings fit into ten categories, five of which include circles, spirals, arcs, serpentini-forms and dot-in-circles. The other five of which are chevrons, lozenges, radials, parallel lines and offsets. One of the most notable examples of art at Newgrange is the triskele-like features found on the entrance stone. It is approximately 10 ft. long and 4 ft. high, and about 5 tons in weight.

It has been described as one of the most famous stones in the entire repertory of megalithic art.