Archaeology 360: St. Patrick's High Cross, Carndonagh, Co Donegal
First there were cross slabs (slabs of stone with crosses carved on them, like at Fahan Mura ) and eventually there were the great High Crosses (like at Kells, Co. Meath). But … somewhere between the two lies St Patrick’s Cross at Carndonagh, Co. Donegal. Although art historians still argue over the dating of the sequence, it is generally thought that the cross at Carndonagh dates to the middle of the 7 th century. The eastern face is decorated with ribbon interlace. The upper portion of the western face is filled with a Greek cross, in similar ribbon interlace while the lower stem bears a depiction of Christ in low relief. Flanking the cross are two pillar stones decorated with human figures. The pillar to the south of the cross had a carving of a figure with a bell that might be a bishop or pilgrim. Another face of the same stone bears an unusual figure, apparently bearing a fine set of horns. The northern pillar has depictions of a warrior (with shield) and King David (with harp).