Archaeology

Archaeology Content

Humans have occupied Ireland for the past 10,000 years, leaving us with a rich legacy of archaeological monuments and landscapes. We work to conserve this unique archaeological heritage.

Archaeological Dig at Heritage Council HQ

June/ July 2012

Surprisingly, very little is known about the exact nature of Kilkenny’s urban origins. Did the early settlement really develop around St. Canice’s monastic site? And if so, in what way did it evolve? In order to try to answer some of these questions, CoilÁn O’Drisceoil of Kilkenny Archaeology Ltd carried out an archaeological research dig which was grant-aided by Heritage Council in 2012. The excavation took place in front of the Bishop’s Robing Room on the grounds of the Heritage Council building for two weeks during June and July 2012.

CoilÁn’s professional team was accompanied by 20 enthusiastic NUI, Kilkenny students who gained practical archaeological skills as part of their BA in Local Studies. Zana Rama, a Heritage Council archaeology intern from Kosovo also worked in the trenches. Daily tours of the dig were held by Mary Teehan, an archaeologist also working with the Heritage Council, who brought the public around the site, showing them the fascinating finds being uncovered beneath their feet. 

For those who could not make the tours, an online diary log was filmed every day and uploaded to the Heritage Council's Facebook page allowing the daily discoveries, realities and infectious knowledge of those working in the trenches to be viewed (these can now be viewed below!). Preliminary findings hint at a large comb-making workshop in the outer monastic sanctum which points to support by a peripheral population. Findings are hoped to be published in 2013 by Kilkenny Archaeology Ltd. 

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