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Newgrange is a prehistoric monument in County Meath, Ireland, located 8 kilometres west of Drogheda on the north side of the River Boyne. It is an exceptionally grand passage tomb built during the Neolithic period, around 3200 BC, making it older than Stonehenge and the Egyptian pyramids.
See the fact file below for more information on the Newgrange or alternatively, you can download our 21-page Newgrange worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
Key Facts & Information
- Newgrange is a 5,200-year-old passage tomb located in the Boyne Valley in Ireland’s Ancient East. Newgrange was built by Stone Age farmers, and the mound is 85 meters (93 yards) in diameter and 13.5 meters (15 yards) high. It is located on an area of about 1 acre.
- A passage measuring 19 meters (21 yards) leads into a chamber with 3 alcoves. The passage and chamber are aligned with the rising sun at the Winter Solstice.
- Newgrange is surrounded by 97 large stones called kerbstones some of which are engraved with megalithic art; the most striking is the entrance stone. Access to the Newgrange monument is via the Brú na Bóinne Visitors Centre.
- Newgrange is known as a passage tomb and was wonderfully constructed by the Neolithic people. As you approach this magical tomb, a large rock sits at an opening to a passage.
- This rock is beautifully carved with Celtic designs and is known to have the only triple spiral motif Celtic design ever found. Around the circumference of the Newgrange tomb are 97 large stones, known as kerbstones, with each one also having carvings of Celtic designs.
- The inner section of the large circle is a large mound of earth and leans against an angled wall composed of Quartz and Granite. The angle of the quartz wall is a remarkable piece of architecture and construction, even by today’s standards. It was built on top of the large ring of carved rock.
- As you walk around the site, you can see the beautiful Celtic designs carved into the face of each rock, although very little is known about the Celtic designs, it does allow us to interrupt our own meaning and let our imaginations run wild.
- These Celtic designs were most likely to have been carved into the rocks later and it is believed the carvings had been done by a man who traveled from France or Italy as the Celts didn’t arrive in Ireland until later during the Iron Age Period.
- As you enter the passage, the height of the passage is at first low but gets higher as you enter the main chamber. Inside the main chamber, which is a cross shape, there are large rocks that form part of the walls of the passage.
- Beautiful Celtic designs can be found on the rocks along the walled passage and inside the main chamber with the roof towering to 19m in height. The main chamber served the purpose of a tomb and when excavated, the remains of five bodies were found.
- Newgrange or the whole area of Brú a Bóinne must have had a major significance for the people who have first built the sites as the design and construction of the tombs were very complex, to say the least.
- The quartz and granite would have come from miles away as this type of stone was not found in the area. The large rocks and standing stones would have also been transported (somehow) from miles away as again, these type of rocks were not generally found in the area where the site is located.
- The most magical part of Newgrange is how it is aligned perfectly with the sun during the winter solstice. The sun shines through a roof box located above the passage entrance, and rises to light up the main chamber tomb lasting over 15 minutes.
- Each year, people in Ireland gather at the site of Newgrange to experience this amazing event but only those who hold special invites are allowed to be within the tomb as it happens.
- Archaeologists classified Newgrange as a passage tomb; however, Newgrange is now recognised to be much more than a passage tomb. Ancient Temple is a more fitting classification, a place of astrological, spiritual, religious, and ceremonial importance, much as present day cathedrals are places of prestige and worship where dignitaries may be laid to rest.
- Newgrange is a large kidney shaped mound covering an area of over one acre, retained at the base by 97 kerbstones, some of which are richly decorated with megalithic art.
- The 19 meter long inner passage leads to a cruciform chamber with a corbelled roof. The amount of time and labor invested in construction of Newgrange suggests a well-organized society with specialised groups responsible for different aspects of construction.
- Newgrange is part of a complex of monuments built along a bend of the River Boyne known collectively as Brú na Bóinne.
- The other two principal monuments are Knowth (the largest) and Dowth, but throughout the area there are as many as 35 smaller mounds.
This is a fantastic bundle which includes everything you need to know about the Newgrange across 21 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use Newgrange worksheets that are perfect for teaching students about the Newgrange which is a prehistoric monument in County Meath, Ireland, located 8 kilometres west of Drogheda on the north side of the River Boyne. It is an exceptionally grand passage tomb built during the Neolithic period, around 3200 BC, making it older than Stonehenge and the Egyptian pyramids.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- Newgrange in Ireland Facts
- The Facts!
- Look Back
- Decoding Time!
- Newgrange Sketch
- Newgrange Jumble
- Newgrange Tour
- Around Ireland
- Short Narrative
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Link will appear as Newgrange Facts & Worksheets: https://kidskonnect.com - KidsKonnect, October 15, 2019
Use With Any Curriculum
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