Rock of Cashel

Rock of Cashel, St. Patrick's Rock, Cashel, County Tipperary, Ireland
Rock of Cashel (St. Patrick’s Rock), Cashel, County Tipperary, Ireland

The Rock of Cashel, in Tipperary County, Ireland,  is a medieval structure that was originally a fortress.  The first floor entrance was designed 12 feet above the ground and accessed by a ladder to protect against unexpected Viking invasions.  The King of Munster donated it to the church in 1101, and soon a chapel was added (1134) and the cathedral portion was built between 1235 and 1270.    The complex has lasted several hundred years despite various wars and other collateral damage over the centuries.  In 1749, the roof over the cathedral was removed by the Anglican Archbishop of Cashel for the lead content which could be used for ammunition.  The location of the ruins is also believed to be the spot where Saint Patrick converted the King of Munster to Christianity in the 5th century.  Today the grounds are open for tourism.