Vikings on the River Barrow

The word ‘Viking’ means to go on a voyage.

Go on your own Voyage in Ireland’s Ancient East this year and feel like you are travelling through time as you paddle down the River Barrow.

 

 

The Vikings arrived in Ireland which they called ‘Eireland’ in a raid on Rathlin Island, the most Northernly point of Northern Ireland in 795. They left a path of destruction behind them wherever they went as they took no mercy on the natives. The Vikings used the rivers to raid inland Ireland. They were very fond of monasteries as that were where the wealth of the country lay.

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The Viking Raids on St Mullins

As the tide goes out from St. Mullins and the river Barrow falls, rocks appear at the bend just below the Mill, known locally as the “Scar” a Viking name for weir.

“Around the swelling waters a graceful swallow glides

As the ever patient Heron awaits the falling tides.

Shadows of raiding Viking ships about the scar appear

The clash of swords, the shouts men, the ancient smell of fear.”

 

 

  • 824 a large fleet of Vikings sailed up the Barrow from Waterford to St Mullins and plundered the monastery of St Moling.
  • 888 Riagan, son of Dunghal defeated the Vikings at St Mullins after which 200 hundred heads were left behind.
  • 915 The Chiefs of Liphe of “Broad Deeds” waged a battle with the Vikings leaving 500 heads in the valley over Tigh –Moling St Mullins. The Irish were no Angles and great men for counting the heads of their enemies.

Round Tower Ruin, St. Mullins.

[Annals of the Four Masters, Vol 2. pp 590-1]

 

  • AD 951: Teach Moling was plundered by Laraic from Waterford the same fellow that Waterford is named after Port –Lairge .

Raiding Vikings from Waterford came up the Barrow River into the settlement at Athy and pillaged South Kildare.

Cluain Andobair was a temporary camp, ‘dunad’ made by the Dublin Vikings in the barony of Narragh and Reban West, Co. Kildare, just east of the Barrow river, with a longphort (Viking ship enclosure) situated across the Barrow from this site.

 

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Ireland’s Ancient East – St. Mullins

Go on your own Voyage in Ireland’s Ancient East this year. Feel like you are travelling through time as you paddle down the River Barrow. Explore the ruins from where the Vikings raided St. Mullins, book a canoe trip now