THE BRONZE AGE
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THE BRONZE AGE IN WICKLOW
- Around 2,000 B.C, smiths began making copper. Wicklow was very important at this time because copper was found there.
- Copper was found at Avoca and gold was discovered in rivers. The smiths made gold bracelets and earrings for important people.
- They also made copper axeheads.
- The early metal workers travelled from place to place. Some of their tools were found in Avoca and Enniskerry.
- Later they learned that a small amount of tin with copper you got a much stronger metal that they called bronze.
- When the metal workers died they were crematd on a funeral pyre and their ashes were put in a pot called a urn. The urn was put in a stone box with a smaller pot of food.
- Sometimes the metal workers would have a standing stone over their grave. They also had stone circles.
- From the map you can see that people travelled all over the mountains from West Wicklow to search for copper.
THE LATE BRONZE AGE IN WICKLOW
By 700 B.C, the people of Wicklow were often fighting each other. They built hill-top forts with earthen defences to protect their kin and livestock.
At one fort in Rathgall, a smith's workshop was found where swords and spears were being made.
When the need to cook arouse people built a fulacht fiadh near a stream. A wooden trough or dry-lined pit was filled with water. The hot stones form the water would crack when put into water. Stones from a fire were put into water to boil it. Food was then put into the water to cook it.
The biggest group of fulacht fiadh were found in Kilmacanogue.
From the map you can see where the main hill forts and where most fulacht fiadh were found.
PREHISTORIC AND EARLY HISTORIC SITES IN THE BRAY AREA
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- Ballybetagh Cairn (trace of ancient road
- Glenruid or Brennanstown, Portal Tomb
- Kilteran, Portal Tomb
- Shankill (Carrickgallogan) Portal tomb
- Parknasillage Tomb (portal)?
Bronze Age Sites
- Wedge Tomb at Loughanstown (beside Tully)
- Balleyedmonduff (Wedge) Field systems
- Standing Stones (Glencullen & Newtown Hill)
- Stone Circle (Rathmicheal)
- Rathmicheal Hill Fort
Early Christian Period
- Killegar Ring Forts (at least 10, see early O.S. maps)
- Stone Cashel (The Scalp)
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- Kiltuck Cross.
- Blackrock Cross heads.
- Fassaroe Cross.
- Aghnahaskin Church, Fassaroe.
- Killeagr: nave & Chancel Church.
- Kilternan: Early Church Note: Blocked up doorway.
- Kill of the Grange: Early Church, Cross bases, slabs & bullaun stone.
- Tully: Romanesque Church, Crosses & slans, enclosure.
- Rathmicheal: Enclosure, remains of round tower, cross slabs and Medieval Church ruins.
- Monastery Townland: Site of Early Monastery, Holy Well.
- Raheen a 'Chluig: (Bray) Early Church.
- Ballyman: Ruins of Early Church with decorated slabs.
- St Kevin's Well, Glendalough
- Cross base at Old Court (Base of High Cross with Scriptural Carvings)
- Fairy Hill, Kilbride: Cross
- Early Cross slab in National Museum: From Bray