Thursday, May 22, 2008

Ben Bulben - Ireland

Ben Bulben (alternatively spelt Benbulben or Benbulbin) is a large rock formation in Ireland. It is a Ben (the Irish name for a large, glacier-carved rock). It is in the part of Ireland known as Yeats Country, though it is officially in the Irish county of Sligo.

Ben Bulben was formed during the Ice age, when large parts of the Earth were under glaciers. It was originally merely a large ridge, however the moving glaciers cut into the earth, leaving a distinct formation, now called Ben Bulben.

If climbed by the north face, it is a dangerous climb. That side bears the brunt of the high winds and storms that come in from the Atlantic Ocean. However, if climbed by the south side, it is an easy climb, due to the fact that side slopes very gently. Upon reaching the summit, the climber is rewarded with a magnificent view of Yeats Country.

Ben Bulben is the setting of many Celtic legends. It is said to be the dwelling of the Fianna, a band of warriors who lived in the third century. One example is a story in which the warrior Diarmuid Ua Duibhne (Diarmund) is tricked by the giant Fionn mac Cumhaill (Finn McCool) into fighting an enchanted boar, which later kills the warrior by piercing his heart with its tusk. The mountain is said to be Diarmuid and Grainne's resting places. Also, in the 6th century, St. Columba led 3,000 soldiers up Ben Bulben to fight for the right for the saint to copy from a Psalter he had borrowed from St. Finnian.

In September 1922, during the Irish Civil War, an Irish Republican Army column, including an armoured car were cornered in Sligo. The car was destroyed by another armoured car belonging to the Irish Free State's National Army , and six of the IRA soldiers fled up the Ben Bulben's slopes. In the end, all were killed, allegedly after they had surrendered. They are known as the "Noble Six"

credited to wikipedia and flickr users: theapothecaryguy, irishwebhq, madrarua, andrewparnell, tailwalker, vallhalla, joshua22, p_a_u_l, jhfoto, griangraf, robotparade, wandering-aengus, riverrun


Anonymous said...

wOw! you got beautiful pictures there!

Janette said...

Thanks for a very pictuesque post. Can't wait to get back there again soon.

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