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                                                                                                                                              Seanchus of Celtic Ireland - 5                  

                                                                                                                                    3800 BC - 3000 BC

3,800 BC Due to the melting Ice the Seas during the previous 1200 years had risen an extra 2 metres, to 8 metres below the present level, as Neolithic farming began in earnest, and there was to be increased migration into Ireland, and also by this time the Mounds and Passage tombs in Ireland had been constructed in great numbers, and were placed much closer together then in any other Country.

 3,500 BC - 2,000 BC The people of the Neolithic / New Stone Age who were now arriving into Ireland, began the introduction of farming practices, and the the building of monuments, with the Human remains of their skeletons from this age to be found in more modern times in Co. Sligo in the north - west of the Connacht Province and in Co. Offaly in the north - west of Southern Leinster. (They were Sun worshippers who burnt the remains of their dead and placed their ashes into burial urns. This Neolithic pre - Celtic period saw many Neolithic Passage Graves being constructed, and included among these was New Grange. Achadh Alla  (Alla's Field) on the River Boyne west of Drogheda in Co. Louth in the north - east of Northern Leinster, where it is physically situated in Co. Meath in the south - east of Northern Leinster covering an area of one acre. It was to become known as Brugh na Boinne, the burial place of the pre - Christian Kings of Tara / Ireland, where up to 100,000 - 200,000 tons of stone were to be used to construct it, and situated there also is a similar Neolithic Court Cairn on a hill at Deer Park / Magher an Rush north of Loch Gill. (The Linkardstown Cists, which were also Neolithic single burial tombs, also appeared in Ireland during this period of time).

3,430 BC the remains of domesticated cattle from this period in time were to be found in modern times in Co. Down in the south - east of the Ulster Province.

3,215 BC The oldest known Neolithic homestead in Ireland, that had existed from this period at Ballnagilly near Cookstown / an Chorr Chriochach (Boundary Hill) in Co. Tyrone in Central Ulster, was also to be uncovered in more modern times.

3,200 BC The construction of the Passage tomb at New Grange  would be continued over the next one hundred years, with nearly 300 Passage tombs to be also completed altogether in Ireland, with many of these along a line from the Midlands / Midhe / Meath in the south - east of Northern Leinster towards the west into Co. Sligo in the north - west of the Connacht Province. These were to be composed of a round mound of earth and stone, with the burial chamber in the middle, and entry was via a passageway leading in from the outside of the mound. (The Passage Tombs were mostly to contain burnt human remains with very few human bodies interred within them.)

3,030 - 2,190 BC The construction of The Mound of the Hostages / Duma na nGiall occurred during this period, which was another Passage tomb situated at Tara in Co. Meath in the south - east of Northern Leinster.

3,000 BC The Neolithic / New Stone Age period now began in earnest in Ireland, and thousands of Megalithic Portal tombs (Chambers or Court Cairns), which were in reality prehistoric graves made up of mounds of stones with verandahs, were built throughout Ireland, especially in the northern region. At Carrowmore in Co. Sligo in the north - west of the Connacht Province there are over 200 Megalithic sites that extend from Clew Bay on the west - coast of Ireland over to Dundalk / Dun Dealgan (Dealgan's Fort) in Co. Louth in the north - east of Northern Leinster. (Those who built them were Irelandís first farmers who also raised animals and cultivated the soil.) Court Cairns such as the one at Creevykeel / Craobhach Caol (The Narrow Bushy Place) in Co. Sligo are mostly all found in the northern part of Ireland with many concentrated in the north of the Connacht Province and nearby, across the southern region of the Ulster Province. 350 all up have been discovered so far, mostly composed of a long mound of stones with a forecourt at one end leading into a long and often subdivided chamber, with some cremation burials carried out in the Court Cairns themselves, but their actual purpose is not clear, as they were not grouped together and are scattered about in individual isolated positions.

    The Portal tombs (Chambers) were to be continued to be constructed until 2000 BC, and most of these are to be also found in the north of Ireland, but there are a large number also along the south - eastern side of Ireland, in a line from Co. Dublin in the north - east of Southern Leinster down to Co. Waterford in the south - east of the Munster Province. Over 160 Portal tombs, including Dolmen tombs, have already been discovered, which were above ground burial chambers, constructed with upright stones, that were covered by one or two capstones and these were to be situated in either a long or rounded mound.

 

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