The first stone church built in Ireland

The church here in Duleek Village (whether it’s the one in this photo or one that formed the structure for this church) in County Meath is reputedly the first stone church to be built in the country. This historic village began as an early Christian monastic settlement. St Patrick established a Bishopric here in the mid 450s and placed it in the care of St Cianan in 489 (who is now the local saint). It was sacked several times by Viking Norsemen between 830 and 1149 and was also pillaged by the Normans in 1171. In April 1014 the bodies of Brian Ború and his son lay in state here on their way to Armagh. In the 12th century, Hugh de Lacy (the Anglo-Norman Lord of Meath) established a manor, constructed a motte castle, and granted the church and the lands to the Augustinians.