This interesting site is located on a beautiful forested hilltop 700 feet above sea level near the village of Augher in County Tyrone. It’s name in Irish ‘Cnoc mBaine’ has had various different interpretations from ‘The Hill of Queen Baine’, ‘The Hill of the Monks’ or ‘Annya’s Cove’. Queen Baine, the wife of a 1st century King Tuathal Techtmar was reputedly buried here in the tomb of the earlier Queen Anya. ¬†The¬†construction of the actual tomb dates back thousands of years even before this event as the designs carved on 3 of it’s 12 huge orthostats are broadly similar to those at Newgrange and Lough Crew (c.3200 – c.2500 b.c) and include spirals, cup-marks, serpentines and concentric circles. The upright stones vary in height between 3 to 7 feet and the mound is 82 ft in diameter. In mythology, this was also the home of the giant Fin M’Coul and his wife Oonagh who reputedly defeated the bad giant Cucullin at this location! This national monument is now under state protection and was covered in 1959 by the Department of the Environment to stop further destruction and vandalism of the site.(R)

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