Looking at Dubh Cathair from outside       Looking from cliff towards the walls of Dún Cathair
Header image
The Dúns of Aran:

DÚN Dubh Cathair
Header image

Inis Mór

Inside Dubh Cathair, notice ruined structures
Granite boulders in a field wall near Dubh Cathair fort
Inside Dun Cathair
Looking west along walls of Dún Dubh Cathair

Now situated on the cliff edge south of InisMór,Dún Dubh Cathair is a small fragment of its original size. The name Dubh Cathair means Black Fort and is thought to be so named because of the darker colouring of the limestone of which it was built.

An unusual observation in the vicinity of Dubh Cathair is the number of granite boulders strewn for about a mile amongst the limestone pavements and field walls north of the fort. Interestingly none of the walls of any of the forts contain granite boulders which would suggest the boulders arrived after the building of this fort. This is in contrast to some of the field walls nearby as in the picture middle right.

Conventional explanations for the existence of the granite boulders on Aran is that they are deposits from the icesheet. If this were true then the boulders would have been available to the fort builders. The question therefore is why they did not use the granite in the walls of their forts?

Based on the extant fragment of walls visible today, Dubh Cathair would have been the largest of all the forts when it was originally built.


Number of enclosures: 1
Inner enclosure wall height: 5m
Inner enclosure width: 3.5m

Chevaux de frise: Yes but not in good condition.
Entrance location: Can't say as most of fort has fallen to sea.




Inside Dún Eoghanachta
Terracing on walls of Dubh Cathair