Agerviller : Round Tower

CountyKilkenny
Grid RefS 498 352
GPSS 49768 35167 (12m)
Longitude7° 16' 3.51" W
Latitude52° 27' 56.77" N
ITM east480366
ITM north584435
Nearest TownMullinavat (12.6 Km)
OS Sheet67
UTM zone29U
UTM x449041
UTM y5761192
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Visit Notes

Tuesday, 18th December 2001

Not a particularly inspiring round tower, in fact its blackness promotes a sense of forboding and seems to threaten.

Only two floors remain (except there is no floor in place). It is unusual in the fact that it has a doorway a ground level. This does allow you to see just how solidly these structures were buit.

Click Thumbnail to View Full Size Image

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Sunday, 7th August 2005

As I drove just 100m from this stumpy round tower I thought I'd pop by again. The later, groundlevel door allows access to the base of the tower so that you can se up inside. I didn't notice last time I was here that there is still a window in the side opposite the original door a floor up from it. The real door is quite a high one at around 4m from the ground.

I didn't really take any notice of the church last tme I was here, but the brillant sunshine made it stand out. Not that it needs much help in that respect as it's built like a small castle! It has immensely thick walls and slit windows on the ground floor.

Round Towers are found all over Ireland. They are very tall towers associated with early monastic settlements. Their purpose is one of much debate: were they bell towers, look-out towers or were they defensive structures, built to protect the sites relics and books during Viking raids? Maybe they were all three! The high-set doors certainly give the impression that some element of defense was considered in their construction.

Internally they had four or five floors, each accessed via a ladder from the floor below. Not every floor had a window, but the top floor usually had four windows which aligned to the cardinal points of the compass. The one at Kells (County Meath) unusually has five windows on the top floor which point at the five gates to the town.

Not many of the eighty plus examples left are full height these days. Many crumbled and were taken down for safety purposes. Some, however, are still very impressive inded with Kilmacduagh (County Galway) reaching an incredible 35m tall.

Originally all of them would have had a conical roof and those that still possess this feature give the impression of being ready to blast off into space.

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Marked Sites

Directions

From Kilkenny take the N10 south and then head west along the R669. After just over 4km the road takes a sharp right turn, carry straight on for about 100m and the round tower is on the right.

Random Gazetteer

A Selection of Other Round Towers

About Coordinates Displayed

This is an explanation of (and a bit of a disclaimer for) the coordinates I provide.

Where a GPS figure is given this is the master for all other coordinates. According to my Garmin these are quite accurate.

Where there is no GPS figure the 6 figure grid reference is master for the others. This may not be very accurate as it could have come from the OS maps and could have been read by eye. Consequently, all other cordinates are going to have inaccuracies.

The calculation of Longitude and Latitude uses an algorithm that is not 100% accurate. The long/lat figures are used as a basis for calculating the UTM & ITM coordinates. Consequently, UTM & ITM coordinates are slightly out.

UTM is a global coordinate system - Universal Transverse Mercator - that is at the core of the GPS system.

ITM is the new coordinate system - Irish Transverse Mercator - that is more accurate and more GPS friendly than the Irish Grid Reference system. This will be used on the next generation of Irish OS maps.

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