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newgrange

Drought weather conditions have unrevealed some RAD archaeological finds at Newgrange within the World Heritage Site of Brú na Bóinne. 

Today marks the shortest day of the year, which sent a stream of sunlight into the megalithic chamber at the site.

To celebrate the winter solstice, the interim report was released which gave extra details into the discoveries at Newgrange. 

National Monuments Service

Early this year, in July, stunning patterns were uncovered on the floodplain beside the ​​​Newgrange passage tomb.

The discovery is believed to give a rare look into prehistoric rituals and architecture.

The Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht said the findings “reinforces the remarkable level of ceremonial and ritual use of the landscape around Newgrange during the prehistoric period”.

The discoveries are detailed as "immense enclosures of timber uprights and large ceremonial henges have been identified on the floodplain in the shadow of Newgrange passage tomb."

"These monuments, visible only fleetingly as cropmarks during the dry summer, clearly form a deliberately structured and ritual landscape of great significance."

National Monuments Service

It is understood that the wooden structures were built around three hundreds years after the passage tombs.

Josepha Madigan, Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, said: “These remarkable archaeological discoveries are a significant reinforcement of the Unesco World Heritage inscription and will transform our understanding of Brú na Bóinne."

"These discoveries will inspire much interest and will attract further research and interpretation. My department looks forward to working with the landowners and academic institutes and researchers in the years ahead on ensuring the secrets these sites still hold are revealed," she added. 

It's truly remarkable, but this site is currently not available to the public as it's on private property.

Feature Image credit: National Monuments Service

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We all learned about Newgrange in history class (and a few of us had to draw it a million times for art) but how many of us have actually been lucky enough to witness the phenomenon itself on Winter Solstice?

During this special time of the year, sunlight floods the inner chamber of the passage tomb in Meath, illuminating the manmade cavern. 

The Neolithic structure is an architectural an historic marvel, and now everyone with an internet connection will be able to witness the big event. 

 

A post shared by Matthew Barnette (@pungeon_master) on

This year's winter solstice will be streamed live at 8.30am tomorrow and Thursday. 

'This year, you too can feel the excitement as people gather at this world heritage site,' reads Ireland's Ancient East

'Experience the wonder, as out of the morning’s darkness a single ray of light illuminates the passage tomb on the shortest day of the year, marking the end of winter and the start of new life.'

'A few moments of magic…5,000 years in the making!'

History buffs, it's time to get the popcorn ready. 

 

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