Knockroe Passage Tomb
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County Kilkenny, Kilkenny, Republic of Ireland
The Knockroe passage tomb in County Kilkenny is one of the lesser known of its kind, having really only been excavated since 1990.
Knockroe Neolithic passage tomb at Knockroe (known locally as ‘The Caiseal’) in County Kilkenny has only been excavated since 1990. It has about 30 decorated stones and, like Newgrange in the Boyne Valley, the face of the cairn flanking the eastern tomb was decorated with a frieze of quartz. Also, like Newgrange, the roof-box in the western tomb allows the rays of the sun to pass along the upward-sloping passage at the Winter Solstice (21st December), when it illuminates a tall red-sandstone portal.
Unlike Newgrange however these rays pass through the roofbox at sunset rather than sunrise. The other aspect of Knockroe that makes it worth investigating is that until its discovery, the prior most southern site of its kind was at Baltinglass Hill in County Wicklow. And the fact that there are two tombs on the one site also marks it out as uncommon.
Knockroe passage tomb is located between the towns of Callan and Carrick-on-Suir in the southwest of County Kilkenny, and lies a short distance from the Kilkenny, Leinster and Ossory borders.