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Kilkenny 2Before Kilkenny was settled by the Anglo-Normans, the MacGilla Patriac kings of Ossory had a residence at Kilkenny at which they held court and in which a deputy acted during their absence, while excavations at Kilkenny castle have revealed evidence for occupation predating the first Anglo-Norman structure there. Extensive pre-Norman activity may have therefore taken place in the general area of the excavations.

The Anglo-Normans established High-town at a very early stage of their Irish incursions. High Town, comprised present High Street, Parliament Street, The Parade and the Castle, Pudding Lane, Pennyfeather Lane and the north part of Patrick Street. Excavation no. no. 97E0468 is within the line marked as High Town by Bradley, while 98E092 is directly to the south of the line. Both sites are within the walled area of the city bounded on the south side by the city wall extending from Talbot's tower to the castle. There are several historical references to the city walls, particularly to the murage grants of Kilkenny which indicate that the walls were built between 1250 and 1440 (Bradley 1975-6, 89). There was further work on the walls around 1642, at the beginning of the strife of the 1640s, when Dutch engineers were employed (Bradley 1975-6, 89).

A sallyport and a stretch of wall remain today on the west boundary of the area of excavations 97E468 and 92E092. The original position of Myles Tower, one of the mural towers figured on Rocque's 1758 map of Kilkenny, was probably on the west side of the wall, just north of the sallyport.


Bradley, J. 1975. The Town Wall of Kilkenny-Part 1. Old Kilkenny Review 1, no. 2, 85-103.
Bradley, J. 1976. The Town Wall of Kilkenny - Part 2. Old Kilkenny Review 3, 209- 218.
Bradley, J. 2000. Kilkenny. Irish Historic Towns Atlas 10. Royal Irish Academy. Dublin.




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