Grianian of Aileach Sunset ,Donegal, Ireland  by mikequigley

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Grianian of Aileach Sunset ,Donegal, Ireland by 

Situated 7km west of Derry, Grianian of Aileach perched on the summit of Greenan Mountain.The name Grianian of Aileach Translates to stone palce, temple or fortress of the Sun. Although heavily restored, there are no doubts as to the antiquity of the site as it is one of only five Irish locations marked on Ptolemy of Alexandria’s 2nd century map of the world.
The stone ringfort is thought to have been built in the early years AD and from the 5th to the 12th centuries it was the seat of the northern Ui Neill, the rulers of the Fifth of Ulster.
According to the Irish Annals, Grianan of Aileach was destroyed in 1101 by Murtagh O’Brien, the ruler of the Fifth of Munster, as a reprisal for the Ui Neill’s destruction of his royal seat at Kincora some thirteen years before. The account tells that O’Brien would settle for nothing less than complete destruction of the Ui Neill stronghold and ordered each of his soldiers to carry away a stone from the fort as they departed.

Restoration was carried out between 1874 and 1879 by Dr. Walter Bernard , a Derry antiquarian. .

The Fort is of dry-stone construction and the the outer surface of the 5m high walls has a graceful curved, or battered, form. There are excellent views from the fort across Lough Swilly, Lough Foyle and the Inishowen Penninsular, it is claimed that on a clear day five of the nine counties of Ulster can be seen from this viewpoint.


  • Martina Fagan
    Martina Faganabout 5 years ago

    many thanks from
    Tina & Fino

  • Thank you – mq

    – mikequigley

    JUSTARTabout 5 years ago


  • Thanks a lot – best wishes – mq

    – mikequigley

  • Junebug60
    Junebug60about 5 years ago

    Beautiful Mike, The colors are gorgeous

  • Thanks a lot June – Happy new year – best wishes – mq

    – mikequigley

  • Antanas
    Antanasabout 5 years ago

    great work

  • Thanks a lot -Antanas best wishes and happy new year – mq

    – mikequigley

  • Holly Kempe
    Holly Kempeabout 5 years ago

    beautifully captured Mike, love the tones! The read is fascinating too…I have O’Brien descendants from Ireland, hopefully not related to Murtagh who destroyed the place ;))

  • Thanks a lot Holly – best wishes and happy new year – mq
    I see you’ve changed your name by Deed poll from Murtagh to Kempe – wise move LOL!

    – mikequigley

  • Yannik Hay
    Yannik Hayabout 5 years ago

    Magnificent sunset. Congratulations for the well deserved feature. Cheers!

  • Thanks a lot Yannick and have a happy new year – best wishes – mq

    – mikequigley

  • Mishaal  Sardar
    Mishaal Sardarabout 5 years ago

    Awesome Capture mike!
    Magnificent contrast.
    Congratulations ..well deserved! :-)

  • Thanks a lot Mishaal and have a happy new year – best wishes – mq

    – mikequigley

  • Jurmale
    Jurmaleabout 5 years ago

    Very great work,Mike! So beautiful sunset! I also like to take the pictures about the sunrise and sunset.Then the colours of sky are so beautiful.

  • Thanks a lot Jurmale and have a happy new year – best wishes – mq

    – mikequigley

  • Laurie Search
    Laurie Searchabout 5 years ago


  • Thanks a lot Laurie and have a happy new year – best wishes – mq

    – mikequigley

  • Daniela Cifarelli
    Daniela Cifarelliabout 5 years ago

    WOW! WONDROUS! Looooooooove it, Mike! ;-) DANIELA

  • Thanks a lot Luanda and have a happy new year – best wishes – mq

    – mikequigley

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