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A Survey of Monuments of Archaeological and Historical Interest in the Barony of Bunratty Lower, Co. Clare by William Gerrard Ryan

Part 2: Chapter 6: Clonloghan Parish: Caherteige Townland

Site A: STONEFORT A (Caher-Teige?)
6” O.S. Sheet number : 51 (Co. Clare)
Reference : 13.1 cm South; 39.8 cm West
Height : 50’ O.D.
Shape : oval with north-south axis greater than east-west one

Description of site:
Generally speaking archaeological habitation sites can be classified as Ringforts or Stoneforts. However in reality classification is not that simple as sites occur having features in common with both groups. One such site is “Caherteige” in the northern part of the townland of the same name. Here field examination found what appeared to be a double banked site with intervening fosse. It was only on closer examination that a stone facing to the “banks” was noted. Therefore to which general grouping does this site belong? Due to the presence of two “banks” and a fosse is it a ringfort? What then of the stone facing to the banks?

In such cases locals frequently have lore relating to the site, principally in the name given to it. In this case locals referred to it as either the Cathair (Caher) or Caherteige. Such names strongly suggest that this site, now damaged in areas, can be classified in the stonefort grouping, as has been done.

What are its features as they survive to date (1978)? As the relevant 6” O.S. sheet shows this site is to be found on gently sloping ground, quite close to a marker (navigation aid) associated with nearby Shannon Airport. The site is best represented in the western part, with parts of the “banks” absent over the eastern areas of the site. What of these two “banks”?

Outer “Bank”:
In the case of the inner and outer “banks” field examination noted that they largely consisted of earth but with a stone facing. The outer bank was found to be quite well represented in the west where it averaged 1.75 metres in height and 4 metres in width. Some stone facing occurs on this. No trace of this outer “bank” now survives to the east.

Inner “Bank”:
This, however, can be traced over the full site. On average it is only 40 cm high by 1.25 metres wide.

As stated previously this site also has a fosse. This is particularly well represented to the west where it averages 5 metres in width. As the interior of the site is of a trellised nature, due to the west-to-east sloping nature of the ground, the fosse looks all the more impressive in this west area. Unfortunately no trace of this feature now survives over the eastern area.
As the 6” O.S. sheet suggests this site is of an oval nature with a north-south axis of 30 metres while that for the east-west area centres on 25 metres.

The only entrance now in use at this site is from the south-east so this is presumably the original one.