Gleann Chaluim Chille

Gleanncholmcille © Benny Lewis

Is e gleann brèagha air taobh siar Dhùn nan Gall a tha ann an Gleann Chaluim Chille. Tha a’ Ghaeilge aig muinntir an àite agus tha ceangal làidir aca gu h-eachdraidheil ri Calum Cille – tha an gleann air ainmeachadh às a dhèidh – agus tha an naomh fhathast air a chuimhneachadh an uair a bhios an turas no an slighe-taisteil bliadhnail a’ tachairt ann an seo.

Ann an Gleann Chaluim Chille, tha Slighe Chaluim Chille a’ leantainn an t-slighe a bha Turas Chaluim Chille a’ gabhail. Bha turasan mar seo nam pàirt chudromach den dualchas taisteil Crìosdail ann an Èirinn.

Tha an turas a’ ceangal grunnan chlachan àrsaidh, cuid a tha a’ dol air ais gu 3000BC. Is iongantach mur eil na tursachan a tha aig teis-mheadhan an turais a’ dol air ais gu 500-700AD.

Tha an ceangal eadar Calum Cille agus Gleann Chaluim Chille a’ dol air ais gu ‘Beatha Chaluim Chille’ a chaidh a bharantachadh le Manus O’Dòmhnaill, a bha na neach-poilitigeach cudromach ann an iar-thuath Èirinn san t-16mh linn. Chaidh a chrìochnachadh ann an 1532, agus tha an leabhar seo a’ tarraing ri chèile cunntasan mu bheatha an naoimh agus na traidiseanan a tha co-cheangailte ris. Tha sgeulachdan ionadail bho bheul-aithris ag ràdh gun do dh’fhuirich Calum Cille ann an seo airson dà bhliadhna mus do dh’fhàg e Èirinn gus a mhanachainn a stèidheachadh air Eilean Ì.

Bithear a’ cumail Turas Chaluim Chille air an fheasgar ron 9mh Ògmhios – là fèill an naoimh – agus air 15mh Lùnastal – là Fèill Moire Mhòr, a tha na phrìomh fhèill ann an dualchas na h-Èireann. Bidh mòran dhaoine a’ dol air an turas barrachd air aon uair – cuid ga dhèanamh dhà no trì thursan sa chiad 24 uairean.

A’ faighinn ann…

Tha Gleann Chaluim Chille air taobh siar Dhùn nan Gall. Bho Dhùn nan Gall, lean an N56 gu siar chun nan Cealla Beaga. Bho na Cealla Beaga gabh an R263 gu Gleann Chaluim Chille. Tha Slighe Chaluim Chille a’ tòiseachadh aig Eaglais na h-Èireann a tha ann am meadhan a’ ghlinne.

Tha mapaichean, iùil agus leabhrain ann a tha a’ mìneachadh na làraich a tha air an turas. Gheibhear mion-chunntas an seo. Tha tuilleadh fiosrachaidh ri fhaotainn bho Oideas Gael.

 
  • Kilmory Knap Chapel carved graveslabs
     

    1.1 Straid Court Tomb

    This is the ruined remains of a burial tomb dating from about 3,000BC. It was made and used by farmers who lived in Gleann Cholm Cille. It is pre-Christian but has been incorporated into the Turas Cholmcille pilgrimage trail around the glen.

  • Kilmory Knap Chapel carved graveslabs
     

    1.2 Cross Pillar

    This cross is almost 2 meters tall and is decorated with carved designs on both sides. It is a Christian monument probably made around 700-800AD.

  • Kilmory Knap Chapel carved graveslabs
     

    1.3 Garvecross Cairn

    Áit na nGlún - The Place of the Knees - is a cairn. To the side there is a flat stone slab with a round stone on top. After circling the cairn, pilgrims pass this smaller stone around their bodies as they pray.

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    1.4 Cross Pillar, Beefan

    Mullach na Croise - Height of the Cross - is a stone pillar carved with the feint outline of a cross. It stands in the centre of a cairn. The cairn and cross are found within the remains of a circular enclosure.

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    1.5 Colmcille's Chapel, Beefan

    According to local tradition, this is the site of Colmcille’s chapel in Gleann Cholm Cille where the saint prayed and worked on illuminated manuscripts. There are also three stone slabs with Christian carvings.

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    1.6 Colmcille’s Chair

    Legend has it that this is where Colmcille sat to rest, looking down at the valley below him. Some claim that a wish made here will come true.

  • Kilmory Knap Chapel carved graveslabs
     

    1.7 Colmcille’s Well

    Tobar Colm Cille - Colmcille’s Well - is surrounded by a large stone cairn.

  • Kilmory Knap Chapel carved graveslabs
     

    1.8 Colmcille’s Garden

    Garraí an Turais - the turas field - is also known as Colmcille’s Garden. The area contains a set of three upright stones, two of which are carved with a simple cross. Each stone is surrounded by a cairn and all are enclosed by a stone wall.

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    1.9 Cloch an Aonaigh

    The Stone of the Gathering - Cloch na Aonaigh - is nearly 2 meters tall and faces pilgrims as they arrive across the valley floor. The stone is carved on both sides with circular and linear patterns.

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    1.10 An Fhothair

    This turas station is a cairn with an upright stone slab standing at its centre. The cairn lies in the middle of field. The stone faces east/west and there are views down to the Church of Ireland church.

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    1.11 An Droim Rua

    Turas station 11 is an upright stone in a cairn. The stations at this point of the turas are near each other on either side of the road. It may be that the current road follows the line of an ancient pilgrimage route.

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    1.12 Baile na nDeamhan

    This stone is decorated on both sides with interlocking patterns. The Baile na nDeamhan - village of the demons - is where Colmcille is said to have been attacked by demons.

  • Kilmory Knap Chapel carved graveslabs
     

    1.13 An Gaineamh

    This stone stands right beside the road. The original was damaged and a fibreglass replica made from the original pieces. It is carved only on one side and faces east/west.

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    1.14 An Caiseal

    This is a tall pillar carved with two circular patterns. Like many of the Christian cross slabs in Gleann Cholm Cille, this may date from the late 7th to 9th century.

  • Kilmory Knap Chapel carved graveslabs
     

    1.15 An tSráid

    This cross slab is now in two parts with the upper part sitting on the ground to the left of the lower part. It is carved with three complex patterns, linked by a vertical line.