BUILDING IRELAND'S HISTORY

Dalkey Castle and Heritage Centre, Dalkey. co.Dublin – c.15th century

dalkeyDalkey was once noted for it’s 7 castles of which only ‘Archibald’s Castle’ and this one still stands. This castle was once owned by the Cheevers family in the 16th century. The Cheevers were of  Norman in origin and the word ‘chevre’ actually means goat in French. The goat was a feature on their coat of arms and this castle was even called ‘Goat Castle’. The deep water port near Dalkey (Colliemore harbour) was once the most important port in Dublin and these fortified tower houses were built to store valuable merchandise such as wine and tobacco. This area was also on the edge of ‘The Pale’ and so these castles were built as protection from the ‘Wild Irish’. Other notable castles in Dalkey were ‘Wolverton Castle’ and ‘Dungan’s Castle’ but these were probably demolished to provide handy building materials for new Mansions that were built in the 18th and 19th centuries. The name ‘Dalkey’ derives it’s name from the Irish ‘Deilg-inis’ or the Norse ‘Deilg-ei’ meaning ‘thorny island’ refering to the shape of Dalkey Island.

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