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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 7: Drumline Parish: Knockaun Townland (Part of)*

Site A: RINGFORT (Destroyed) (Classification type possibly 1(b))
6” O.S. Sheet number : 51 (Co. Clare)
Reference : 18.1 cm South; 50.3 cm West
Height : c. 40’ O.D.
Shape : oval, with north-south axis greater than east-west one.

* Knockaun Townland has areas in two separate Civil Parishes. The northern part of this townland is in Drumline Civil Parish, while the southern part is in Clonloghan Civil Parish.

Description of site:
Though represented on the 1952 (revised) 6” O.S. sheet field examination found that this site had been levelled. However crop marks, indicating some of its principal features, were to be seen in the field and such marks told us the following about the site.

This was formerly a double banked ringfort, with fosse. It was built to the north-east of Knockaun Hill, on land that slopes from to east. However, in spite of the gently sloping nature of the ground, there was no evidence to suggest that this site was of a trellised nature. The interior seems to have followed the sloping surface, hence classification type 1.

Traces of two banks may be observed about this site. The inner bank is suggested by crop markings to the north-east. These suggest a width which centred on 2 ¼ metres. No visible trace of this bank existed. An outer bank was suggested, again by crop markings, to the north-west. Here, outside the fosse, there was a slight rise of some 25 cm in ground level. This probably represents the only surviving trace of the outer bank which averaged 1 ¾ metres in width.

Whereas the banks are poorly represented the same cannot be said for the fosse. This survives in a fair condition along that half of the site between the north-west and south-east areas. Here it averages 7 metres in width by a maximum depth of 1 metre. Some marshy grass occurs in the fosse floor.

Because of the levelled nature of the site it was not possible to find the original entrance area. It may have been from the higher sloping ground to the west.

As the map suggests this site was of an oval shape. Field examination found the north-south internal diameter to centre on 40 metres by some 33 metres east-west. The 1920 25” O.S. sheet gave this ringfort an area of .462 acres.

There are two parts to Knockaun townland. The northern section (approximately 120 acres) is in Drumline Civil Parish. The larger southern part (c. 140 acres) is in Clonloghan Civil Parish. Both parts are, however, in Newmarket-on-Fergus R.C. Parish.

In relation to sites of archaeological interest in the townland Site A (destroyed) as described previously is in Drumline Civil Parish. Site B, in the southern part of the townland, is in Clonloghan Civil Parish.

There are no sites of historical interest in either part of this north-south facing townland.