This is the beautiful and graceful Proleek Dolmen located on the legendary Cooley Peninsula in co. Louth. It is one of the finest examples in Ireland and dates from between 4000 to 3000 bc. They were given the name ‘dolmen’ in the Victorian era which derives from a Breton word meaning a ‘stone table’. The proper name for these incredible monuments are ‘portal tombs’ as the 2 upright stones (or portals) are believed to be ‘the gateway’ into the burial chamber. Many of these were originally covered by hundreds of smaller stones in the shape of a cairn but these were usually removed over the years for other purposes. It is common to find cremated bones, grave goods, flints, bone beads and coarse pottery during excavations. The giant roof stone on this example measures approx 12 x 10 feet and is estimated to weight over 30 tonnes. If you look closely at the photo you will see lots of tiny pebbles on the top of capstone as a local legend says..’if you throw a stone up and it stays, you will be married within a year”!

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