Poulnabrone dolmen, meaning “hole of the quern stones” is an ancient stone tomb in Burren, Ireland.
Poulnabrone Dolmen dates back to Neolithic Period, around 4200 and 2900BC
The dolmen consists of a 12ft, thin, slab-like, tabular capstone supported by 2 slender portal stones, which support the capstone 1.8m (6ft) from the ground, creating a chamber in a 9m (30ft) low cairn that stabilize the tomb chamber, and would have been no higher during the Neolithic time. The entrance faces north and is crossed by a low sill stone
Local Burren community of that time built Poulnabrone Dolmen.
A crack was discovered in the eastern portal stone in 1985.
Soon after the discovery, excavation began and between 16 and 22 adults and 6 children were found buried under the monument. Personal items buried with the dead included a polished stone axe, a bone pendant, quartz crystals, weapons and pottery and a new born baby.
The burial chamber of Poulnabrone dolmen was 25cm deep.
The tomb was probably a centre for ceremony and ritual until well into the Celtic period, or it may have served as a territorial marker in the Neolithic landscape.
Due to the Burren’s excellent dark skies and Poulnabrone’s remote location, the car park built in 2007, has been used by Shannonside Astronomy Club as an unofficial public observatory.
It is one of the most famous and most photographed Irish dolmens.
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The remarkable image of the sun setting through the Dolmen is one of those most commonly associated with the area.
Many artefacts, including arrowheads and axes, stone beads and broken pottery were found on the alongside, some of which are now on display in the National Museum in Dublin.