Photographer's Note

A rare glimpse of Blarney Castle in bright sunlight! The first structure on the site was supposedly built in the tenth century, but was wooden and thus almost nothing remains. Reportedly, around 1210 AD, the structure was replaced by a stone one, later demolished to the foundations. In 1446, the third castle was built by Dermot McCarthy, King of Munster. Its keep still remains standing, seen as the tall structure behind the trees. Its lower walls are 15 feet high, built by the McCarthys of Muskerry. The second castle on the site was supposedly once occupied by Cormac McCarthy, a king of Munster who supposedly supplied four thousand troops to supplement the forces of Robert the Bruce at the battle of Bannockburn in 1314. The castle changed hands several times, but was finally acquired by Sir James St. John Jeffereys in 1688 after the McCarthy family fortune was squandered and its estate later forfeited by a descendent who supported James II in the Williamite Wars; the property eventually passed to the Hollow Sword Blade Company who then sold it to Sir James, the Governor of Cork in 1688. His son later built a Georgian gothic house up against the keep.

The origins of the legend of the Blarney stone are obscure. For more than 200 years, however, people ranging from world statesmen, actors and literary figures have made the pilgrimate to kiss the Blarney Stone and hence gain the "gift of eloquence." Some stories assert that it was originally "Jacob's Pillow," brought to Ireland where it became the Lia Fail, or "Fatal Stone," used as an oracular throne to determine who should be the kings of Ireland. It was also said to be the deathbed pillow of St. Columba on the island of Iona, but was later relocated to the mainland of Scotland where it also served a prophetic purpose; when Cormac McCarthy sent troops to support Robert the Bruce, a portion of the original Stone of Scone was supposedly given to the Irish troops as gratitute. Other legends state that it was brought back to Ireland during the Crusades, having various aspects of religious significance. Officially, it's a block of bluestone set in the wall below the battlements, so visitors literally have to lean over backward to kiss it, which looked rather precarious to me!

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Photo Information
  • Copyright: Terez Anon (terez93) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 92 W: 78 N: 1276] (2193)
  • Genre: Plaatsen
  • Medium: Kleur
  • Date Taken: 2006-07-00
  • Categories: Kastelen
  • Fotoversie: Originele versie
  • Date Submitted: 2009-01-08 23:10
Viewed: 1788
Points: 0
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Additional Photos by Terez Anon (terez93) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 92 W: 78 N: 1276] (2193)
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