Newly published: 'Lost and Found III'

Lost and Found III

Two new books hot off the printing presses

Book Cover Rindoon Castle and Deserted Medieval Town: a visitor's guide by K. O'Conor & B. Shanahan. 2018. Book Cover Myth and Materiality Waddell 2018 302

Congratulations to Dr Kieran O’Conor and Brian Shanahan on the publication of their book Rindoon Castle and Deserted Medieval Town: A Visitor’s Guide (ISBN: 978-0-9575800-7-7), Roscommon County Council, 2018.

Congratulations also to Professor John Waddell on the publication of his latest book Myth and Materiality (ISBN: 9781785709753), Oxbow Press, Oxford, 2018.

Library Donation 'Thank You' by Students


We are grateful to the Archaeology Society
and our students of archaeology who presented
a copy of the Irish Historic Towns Atlas No. 28 Galway/Gaillimh 
(Prunty, J. & Walsh, P. 2016, Royal Irish Academy, Dublin.)
for the departmental library as a ‘thank you’ to staff for
their support, dedication and enthusiasm and for helping to
make both subject matter and student experience a little more entertaining and fun.

Our heartfelt thanks to all in return; the library donation
and the sentiments are very much appreciated!

 Archaeology Society Presentation of Historic Towns Atlas, Galway for the departmental library 2018

'Becoming and Belonging in Ireland AD c. 1200 - 1600: Essays in Identity and Cultural Practice' book-launch

 Book-launch of 'Becoming and Belonging in Ireland AD c. 1200 - 1600: essays in identity and cultural practice' (Cork University press)

Dr Maurice Manning, Chancellor of the National University of Ireland, recently launched Becoming and Belonging in Ireland AD c. 1200-1600: Essays in Identity and Cultural Practice (Cork University Press), at the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland. He is pictured here with the editors (left to right) Professor Liz FitzPatrick, Dr Eve Campbell and Professor Audrey Horning. The book is a collection of essays by 13 historical archaeologists and three historians who research landscape, settlement, built heritage, material culture and history of later medieval and early modern Ireland. It will be an important text book for students and an enlightenment for the interested lay reader.

Rathcroghan: European Innovation Partnership project approved

Rathbeg bivallage barrow in the Rathcroghan complex of archaeological monuments, Co. Roscommon

The Rathcroghan Resource Community (RRC) was formed in 2015. Its committee members consist of key stakeholders in the Rathcroghan archaeological landscape including landowners, Rathcroghan Visitor Centre, Roscommon County Council, and NUI Galway representatives. The RRC is delighted to report that (in collaboration National Monuments Service, Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, and Teagasc) it has been successful in its application to the Department of Agriculture European Innovation Partnership for its project proposal entitled ‘Sustainable Farming in the Rathcroghan Archaeological Landscape’. This project will now progress to the second phase and involve the creation of a detailed project plan to secure access to a 5-year funding cycle. This grant will enable the Rathcroghan farmers to better achieve a livelihood out of this sensitive farming landscape while simultaneously conserving the environmental integrity of this valuable cultural asset and ensuring the maintenance and integrity of this unique archaeological complex for future generations.


Appointment of Adjunct Professor Mary Cahill

 Adjunct Professor Mary Cahill, Archaeology, School of Geography and Archaeology, 2018

We are delighted to announce the appointment of Adjunct Professor Mary Cahill.
A specialist in the archaeology of the Bronze Age, Professor Mary Cahill comes to NUI Galway from the National Museum of Ireland where she was Keeper of Antiquities. She has lectured and published widely, particularly on the Bronze Age. She is a leading expert on prehistoric gold.
A Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries (London), Professor Cahill has served on the Royal Irish Academy's National Committee for Archaeology, the board of the Discovery Programme, the Heritage Council's Statutory Committee for Archaeology, and was vice-president of the Council of the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland.
Professor Cahill’s current research focus has turned towards ethnography, the symbolism and agency of gold ornaments, and sheet gold in the context of warrior status and culture in later prehistoric Europe.

Prizes Awarded for Outstanding Archaeological Scholarship 2016/17

 Claire O'Neill, Michael Duignan Prize for excellence in BA Archaeology 2018  Kylie Crowder, John Waddell Prize for best MA in Landscape Archaeology 2018  Livia Barnova, Monsignor Hynes Prize for the highest mark in Archaeology, BA 2016/17

Congratulations to Claire O’Neill,
awarded the Michael Duignan Prize
for excellence in BA Archaeology

Kylie Crowder, awarded the
John Waddell Prize for best
MA in Landscape Archaeology
dissertation and 

Livia Barnova,
who was awarded the
Monsignor Hynes Prize
for the highest mark in
Archaeology BA 2016/17.

Professor Christopher Barton, visiting US Fulbright Scholar

 Professor Christopher Barton PhD, US Fulbright Scholar from Francis Marion University in South Carolina, visiting Archaeology, School of Geography and Archaeology 2018

The School of Geography and Archaeology is delighted to welcome Professor Christopher P. Barton PhD, a visiting US Fulbright Scholar from Francis Marion University in South Carolina. He is interested in the archaeology of Irish racialisation during the Irish Diaspora and Great Famine. Professor Barton’s work focuses on the confluence of race and class as intertwined social structures that were used to marginalize the rural Irish. Additionally, he is in the early stages of developing a community-based archaeological project that focuses on resistance, improvisation, and identity on the Great Blasket Island, County Kerry. 

Royal Society of Edinburgh Award

‌Professor Elizabeth FitzPatrick has been awarded a Royal Society of Edinburgh European Visiting Research Grant, funded by the Caledonian Research Foundation, for her work on the medieval royal forest of Arran: landscape and legend. Her work on the Isle of Arran (with Dr Paul Naessens) is integral to her project, Atlas of Finn mac Cumaill’s Places, which investigates the relationship between fíanaigecht and topographies and archaeologies of royal power on the boundaries of medieval Gaelic polities, in Ireland and Scotland. 

Arran Scotland Aerial Photo of Fingal's Cave and Torr Righ Mor (Paul Naessens)

A section of the series of caves at the foot of Torr Righ Mòr, with the entrance to Fingal’s Cave at the centre (image: Paul Naessens).

'Islands in a Global Context' book-launch

 'Islands in a Global Context' book-launch by Michael Clarke in Archaeology, Christmas 2017  'Islands in a Global World' book launch
 'Islands in a Global Context' book launch Christmas 2017  Islands in a Global Context - Christmas Party 2017

Islands in a Global Context’, the proceedings of the 7th international conference on Insular Art which was hosted by NUI Galway in 2016, got a suitably festive launch by Professor Michael Clarke, Classics, School of Languages, Literatures and Cultures, at the Archaeology Christmas party on Tuesday 5th December 2017.

This lavishly illustrated volume of essays, written by 30 of the world’s leading experts in the medieval art of Ireland and Britain, was edited by NUI Galway archaeologists Conor Newman, Mags Mannion and Fiona Gavin. NUI Galway was selected to host the conference because of the huge contribution that its scholars, from as far back as the 1970s, have made to the study of some of the most remarkable art objects dating from the Iron Age to the Middle Ages, including the Book of Kells, the Ardagh Chalice, the Tara Brooch, the monumental High-Crosses, Romanesque sculpture, and so on. The essays in this 7th volume look particularly at the way Insular Art was influenced by the Continent. There is a strong emphasis on decoding the symbols used in this art and getting to the deeper meanings hidden in the tiniest details of some of the most iconic objects produced on these islands. We are fortunate many of these artefacts are on display at the national Museum of Ireland for all to see.

Islands in a Global Context: Four Courts Press, 320pp, colour ilus, large format, €60.00

PhD and MLitt Graduates

News item: Dr Yolande O'Brien PHD and Collette Allen M.Litt at their graduation ceremony at NUIGalway on 22 Nov. 2017 (pictured with Dr Stefan Bergh and Professor Elizabeth FitzPatrick)

Many congratulations to Dr Yolande O'Brien and Colette Allen, who were awarded a PhD in Archaeology and an MLitt in Archaeology respectively. They are pictured here with Dr Stefan Bergh and Professor Elizabeth FitzPatrick after their graduation on Wednesday 22 November 2017.

MA in Landscape Archaeology graduates 2017

News item: MA in Landscape Archaeology graduations on 23 November 2017

The sun shone brightly on our equally dazzling MA in Landscape Archaeology class of 2017 for their graduataion ceremony on Thursday 23 November 2017. Pictured here with beaming smiles are Margaux Chevalley MA, Diane Morrison MA, Kylie Crowder MA and Matt Peace MA, with Dr Stefan Bergh and Dr Kieran O'Conor.

Dr Kieran O'Conor awarded AIA Samuel Kress Lectureship in Ancient Art 2017-18

‌‌Dr Kieran O'Conor 2017

‌‌‌‌Dr Kieran O'Conor

School of Geography and Archaeology
NUI Galway



Archaeological Institute of America
Samuel Kress Lectureship Award2017-2018

T‌he School of Geography and Archaeology is particularly proud to announce that Dr Kieran O’Conor was one of two archaeologists from Europe who has been awarded the annual Archaeological Institute of America's (AIA) Samuel Kress Lectureship in Ancient Art for the academic year 2017-18. This is the first time that the AIA has chosen a medieval archaeologist for this prestigious award. Dr O’Conor is currently on tour and presenting his research to AIA chapters across the USA and Canada. He will be giving lectures in the Wooster (Ohio), Denver, Tucson, Spokane, Winnipeg, St Louis, Athens (Georgia), Orlando, Gainesville (both in Florida), San Antonio (Texas), Worcester (Mass), Long Island (New York), Ottawa, and Narragansett (Rhode Island). Phew! Whilst in America, Dr O’Conor has also been asked to lecture at a number of other venues not linked to the AIA.

HDip in Arts (Archaeology) Graduations

 HDip in Arts (Archaeology) Graduations 2017

Congratulations to James McKeon, Matheus Munoz De Almedia and Mary Pereira on receiving  their HDip in Arts (Archaeology) on Tuesday 17 October 2017. Mary and James are pictured here with Professor Elizabeth FitzPatrick (Matheus absent). 

Sligo Neolithic Heritage Guide launched

 Launch of Dr Stefan Bergh's Neolithic Heritage Guide to Sligo by Minister Moran 21 August 2017

 Launch of Dr Stefan Berth's 'Sligo Neolithic Heritage Guide' by Minister 21 August 2017

 Launch of Dr Stefan Bergh's Neolithic Heritage Guide for Sligo by Minister  Sligo Neolithic Heritage Guide walking tour led by Dr Stefan Bergh to Carns Hill 22 August 2017

Dr Stefan Bergh’s guide to ‘Neolithic  Cúil Irra: Knocknarea – Carrowmore – Carns Hill’, published by Archaeology Ireland  ( Heritage Guide No. 78), was launched by Minister Kevin ‘Boxer’ Moran T.D., Minister of State with responsibility for the Office of Public Works (OPW) and Flood Relief in the Carrowmore Visitor Centre, Co. Sligo,  on Monday 21st August 2017. This was followed by a well-attended guided tour of Carns Hill led by Dr Bergh on Tuesday as part of Heritage Week. (Read More).

'Islands in a Global Context'

Newman, Mannion & Gavin (eds) 2017 'Islands in a Global Context'. Four Courts Press. Dublin.

Islands in a Global Context

edited by NUI Galway’s
Conor Newman, Mags Mannion and Fiona Gavin
will be in shops from 28 June 2017.
This lavishly illustrated volume of essays from 30
of the world’s leading experts in medieval art
in Ireland and Britain is the seventh volume in the
series of international conferences on Insular art.
The jacket image of a silver bible cover from the
6th-7th century Kaper Koraon treasure, Syria,
speaks to the reach of a collection that focuses on
the role of the outside world in shaping Insular art.

Islands in a Global Context: Four Courts Press,
320pp, colour illus, large format, €60.00

Setting Higher Standards

In recognition of her outstanding work, Sandra Getty
has been commended for her valuable contribution to Archaeology,
the School of Geography and Archaeology and the University
under the ‘President’s Awards for Support Services Excellence’.
It is very well deserved. Many congratulations!


Sandra Getty, Administrative Assistant, Archaeology 

A celebratory event in honour of Conor Newman

... to mark the conclusion of his role as chair of the Heritage Council from 2008-2016 was held in the Moore Institute, NUI Galway on Tuesday evening 7th March 2017.

 Dr Kieran O'Conor 2017

Kieran O'Conor reception speech 2017

 Conor Newman 2017

Newman concluding Heritage Council address 2017

Professor John Waddell 2017

With words from his friends and colleagues Dr Kieran O’Conor and Professor John Waddell and musical interludes provided by Jim Higgins, (Bodhran), Maritin O’Conor (accordion) and special guest, Beatrice Newman (violin) and also by sean-nós singer in residence, Sarah Ghriallas. It was quite an event.

 Moore Institute Music 2017  Moore Institute sean-nós 2017

Journal of Irish Archaeology Vol. 24

Journal of Irish Archaeology Vol. 24 cover

Volume 24 of the Journal of Irish Archaeology will be appearing very soon. The image on the cover, designed by Angela Gallagher, is intended to highlight the importance of ancestry in the history and prehistory of Ireland. It is composed of a collage of Irish faces and I want to thank everyone who contributed photos towards this illustration. The criteria was that the individuals in the photos had four Irish grandparents which means that the phenotypic traits displayed in the faces, while not necessarily ancient, do have some time depth. Archaeology is now rapidly entering an era in which ancestry (at a variety of scales) will play a much greater role in our interpretations. This shift is being driven by methodological advances in ancient DNA (aDNA) research and I am excited to lead volume 24 of the Journal of Irish Archaeology with a specially commissioned piece by Lara Cassidy and Dan Bradley of the Smurfit Institute of Genetics, Trinity College Dublin in which they explain these recent methodological advances, bring us up to date with current aDNA research in Ireland, and point towards the future directions of this research.

PhD graduations: 23 November 2016

PhD Archaeology Graduation November 2016

Many congratulations to Dr Thor McVeigh, Dr Richard Gray, Dr Betty Gray and Dr Eugene Costello, pictured above, who recieved their PhDs in Archaeology on 23 November 2016 - an outstanding achievement individually and a major milestone for the Discipline of Archaeology!

Archaeological research at the royal site of Rathcroghan, Co. Roscommon.

'Researching Rathcroghan, the Tara of the West'
an article by Lorna Siggins, Western Correspondent of The Irish Times (Satruday 9th November, 2016)

Rathcroghan Reconstruction Drawing 2015 large
Copyright: Roscommon County Council and JG O'Donoghue

A conjectural reconstruction of Rathcroghan Mound, by J.G. O’Donoghue (Archaeological Illustrator) in collaboration with Joe Fenwick (Archaeological Field Officer, NUI Galway), as it might have looked during the Later Iron Age, some 2000 years ago (©J.G. O’Donoghue/Roscommon County Council).

Turlough Hill Excavations 2016, Co. Clare.

'Mystery surrounds Burren settlement excavated by archaeologists'
an article by Lorna Siggins, Western Correspondent of The Irish Times (Saturday 30 April, 2016)

Vodcasts of Spring Lunchtime Lecture Series 2015 (Natural and Human Heritages)

Dr Brídín Carroll
Locating the Locale of Local Food.
A review of Irish consumers’ varied understandings of ‘local food’, arising from research which recognises the power attributed to localisation to address the ‘grand challenges’ facing the food system.

Dr Frances Fahy & Dr Mary Jo Lavelle
What’s Ireland Consuming?
Household consumption remains somewhat of a black box for policymakers. Focusing on external conditions – the impact of a global recession and economic downturn – we examine consumption activities based on a survey of 1,500 households.

Dr Maura Farrell
Rural Ireland: Moving Forward or Remaining the same.
Rural Ireland has witnessed unprecedented change in recent decades. These changes in contemporary spaces of rurality have resulted in the agricultural community sharing the landscape with a diversity of people, industry and communities.

Joe Fenwick
Repopulating the Archaeological Landscape of the Brú na Bóinne World Heritage Site.
A presentation of the re-emerging traces and places of past human settlement and activity hidden in the shadow of the great prehistoric monuments of the ‘bend of the Boyne’.

Conor Newman
The Sword in the Stone: the Galway Connection
Though usually considered the stuff of kingly legend, the motif of the sword in the stone appears to have some basis in reality. The story begins on the Maree peninsula.

Multiple Book Launch - 15 December 2015

The Discipline of Archaeology has been remarkably successful in recent years in attracting both post-graduate and overseas students to NUI Galway, based largely on its innovative and supportive teaching environment and its internationally-recognised reputation as a hub of scholarly research and progressive publication. Its success is also due, in no small measure, to the exceptionally rich resource on its doorstep: the diversity of natural and cultural landscape environments afforded by the midland, western and wild Atlantic seaboard – a ready-made, outdoor archaeological laboratory.  Another great resource available to the Nation and much sought after abroad, is the calibre of its graduate students and alumni and the exuberant enthusiasm that each exude for their chosen profession, which, in turn, is reflected in their assured scholarship and impressive publication record. It was with particular pleasure, therefore, that the Discipline of Archaeology had the honour of simultaneously launching, not one, but a total of six books published by some of its recently graduated PhD students – a remarkable achievement by any account and a source of great pride to the School of Geography and Archaeology.

 Archaeology multiple book launch December 2015

Pictured above are four of the authors with their books (L-R) Dr Fiona Beglane (Anglo-Norman Parks in Medieval Ireland), Dr Mags Mannion (Glass Beads from Early Medieval Ireland: Classification, Dating, Social Performance), Dr Phyllis Mercer (Irish Portal Tombs: A Ritual Perspective) and Dr Robert Hensey (First Light: The Origins of Newgrange), surrounded by academic staff of Archaeology (L-R) Conor Newman, Dr Kieran O’Conor, Dr Stefan Bergh, Dr Carleton Jones, Professor John Waddell and Professor Elizabeth FitzPatrick. Those authors absent from the photograph are Dr Eve Campbell (The Field Names of County Louth) and Dr Katherine Leonard (Ritual in Late Bronze Age Ireland: Material Culture, Practices, Landscape Setting and Social Context). Congratulations to one and all!


Fiona Beglane (PhD in Archaeology, NUI Galway - 2012)

Anglo-Norman Parks in Medieval Ireland
€45 Four Courts Press



Eve Campbell, co-ordinator (PhD in Archaeology, NUI Galway - 2012)

The Field Names of County Louth

The Louth Field Names Project commenced in early 2012
under the auspices of the County Louth Archaeological and
Historical Society, County Louth I.F.A. and the County Louth
Library Service. 


Robert Hensey (PhD in Archaeology, NUI Galway - 2010)

First Light: The Origins of Newgrange

(Oxbow insights in Archaeology)


Mags Mannion (PhD in Archaeology, NUI Galway - 2013)

Glass Beads from Early Medieval Ireland:
Classification, Dating, Social Performance.

This is the first dedicated and comprehensive study of
glass beads from Early Medieval Ireland, presenting the
first national classification, typology, dating, symbology
and social performance of glass beads. 

€30 Archaeopress


Phyllis Mercer (PhD in Archaeology, NUI Galway - 2013)

Irish Portal Tombs: A Ritual Perspective

€49 (BAR British Archaeological Reports)


Katherine Leonard (PhD in Archaeology, NUI Galway - 2014)

Ritual in Late Bronze Age Ireland: Material Culture, Practices, Landsape Setting and Social Context.