Nendrum Monastic Site (1) Co Down

Nendrum Monastic Site 1, Co Down

Nendrum Monastic Site 1, Co Down

Nendrum Monastic Site. This fine example of an island monastery was traditionally founded in the 5th century by St Machaoi. There are documentary references from the 7th-century until 976AD when the Abbot was burned in his house, perhaps in a Viking raid. A small Benedictine cell was founded here in the late-12th century. The Monastery was documented as a parish church in 1306, but abandoned for a mainland site at Tullynakill during the 15th century. The site was ‘lost’ until the mid-19th century when the eminent ecclesiastical historian William Reeves, searching for the churches recorded in 1306, visited the island to look at a ‘lime kiln’ which he recognised as the remains of a round tower. Major restoration work was carried out on the site following excavations in the 1920’s.

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