• Mon09:00 - 16:00
    • Tue09:00 - 16:00Closed
    • Wed09:00 - 16:00
    • Thu09:00 - 16:00
    • Fri09:00 - 16:00
    • Sat09:00 - 16:00
    • Sun09:00 - 16:00

Saint Patrick's Cathedral CoI

Saint Patrick’s Church of Ireland Cathedral stands on the hill from which the City of Armagh takes its name – Ard Macha; the hill of Macha.
Macha, a legendary pre-Christian tribal princess is also linked with the nearby Emain Macha at Navan Fort, which is regarded as having been the ancient royal centre of Iron Age Ulster.
After the destruction of the sanctuary at Emain, it is thought that the nearby hill of Ard Macha became the centre of the Ulaid (the local tribal group that gave its name to Ulster).
It is this hilltop enclosure which St. Patrick acquired and within which he ordered the building of his first ‘Great Stone Church’.
St Patrick’s earliest church in Armagh is thought to have been ‘Templum na Ferta’, the Church of the Relics on a site close to Scotch Street, below the Hill of Armagh.
The steep streets leading away from the Cathedral follow the line of its original defensive ring to the city below. As you leave through the main gates to the left of the Cathedral, stands the Armagh Public Library, founded in 1771 across the road is the former Armagh Infirmary, dating from 1774.
Facing the Cathedral are the eleven houses of Vicar’s Hill which peer over the west wall of the Cathedral. Opposite the Library is the neo-Elizabethan Synod Hall, built in 1912, and, to its right, the limestone pillars and impressive eighteenth century iron gates, formerly sited at the Archbishops’ Palace, leading to the present See House.
It’s location is steeped in Armagh history and it is worth taking a morning to walk around it’s grounds and surrounding area.

"This is a beautiful building steeped in history And Armagh has two catherdals . There is a great view over Armagh from outside this catherdal too. "

By Helen Muldrew

10 Feb 2017

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