Saturday, May 7, 2016
Shari and I visited this area about two weeks ago. Our local librarian, Gerry, gave us a little brochure which had some information on the cross and the graveyard. Tomorrow's post we'll take a look at the graveyard which is just pass the gate you see. I found some more info on the cross and you can read it below.
This interesting cross is located just the grounds of an ancient monastery founded by St.Finian around 500 a.d. on a hill overlooking Lough Foyle. This plain cross is 10 feet high and has an odd looking hole through the top. This hole is thought to have contained a peg serving as a ‘gnomon’ for a rudimentary sundial and the vertical shadow indicated the hour of noon. The base of Cooley cross is also peculiar as it is a large flat stone containing a crude representation of a human foot, traditionally ascribed to St. Patrick. There is also a perforation, about four inches in diameter, near one end and this may have also been used as a hole-stone (it is now used to support for the cross). Hole-stones date back to pagan times and are thought to be used when couples joined their hands through them when making vows.
Info courtesy of the curious ireland website