Dalkey is one of the prettiest and most exclusive villages in Ireland. It was once noted for it’s seven castles of which only two remain, this one, and Archibald’s Castle on the other side of the road. Dalkey Castle was once owned by the Cheevers family in the 16th century and was originally called ‘Goat Castle’. The Cheevers were Norman in origin and the word ‘chevre’ actually means goat in French. The goat also featured on their coat of arms – no kidding! Dalkey’s deep harbour was once Dublin’s most important and these fortified towerhouses were built as defensive structures and also to store valuable goods such as wine and tobacco. This area was also on the edge of ‘the Pale’ and so was constantly under threat of attack from displaced Gaelic clans such as the O’Byrnes and the O’Tooles. Other notable castles in Dalkey were ‘Wolverton Castle’ and ‘Dungan’s Castle’ but these were demolished to provide handy building materials for the new Georgian and Victorian that were built in the 18th and 19th centuries. The name ‘Dalkey’ derives it’s name from the Irish ‘Deilg-inis’ meaning ‘thorny island’.