Review – County Wexford: Ireland’s first Anglo-Norman stronghold

1 min read

Denis Shine, Michael Potterton, Stephen Mandal, and Catherine McLoughlin
Four Courts Press, €24.95
ISBN 978-1846827969
Review Marie Therese Flanagan

This volume, comprising 12 chapters by 22 contributors, focuses on the ringwork of Carrick or Ferrycarrig, located approximately three kilometres north-west of Wexford town. It is the earliest named and dated Anglo-Norman fortification, set up in the winter of 1169. Although no archaeological evidence for pre-invasion occupation of the site has yet been uncovered, the name Carrick (Irish ‘rock’) is suggestive. The ringwork would be replaced by a stone castle, first mentioned in 1236, and a medieval borough and deer park also developed close to the site, which went into decline from the 14th century.

A major collaborative research project, ‘Digging the Lost Town of Carrig’, with an anticipated lifespan of 15 years, has been devised, and the early findings from a limited excavation undertaken by a teaching field school are presented here, together with broader essays contextualising the site within its surrounding archaeological and historical landscape.

This review appeared in CA 360. To find out more about subscribing to the magazine, click here.

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