Castles and Fortresses of the Medieval Gaelic Lordship of Moylurg, Roscommon

This listing expired on August 31, 2023. Please contact for any updated information.

Location: Rockingham, RC, IE

Season: July 4, 2023 to July 31, 2023

Session Dates: At this time session dates are not fully set.

Application Deadline: May 31, 2023

Deadline Type: Rolling


Program Type:
Field School

RPA Certified:

Saint Louis University

Project Director:
Thomas Finan, PhD, RPA, FSA Associate Professor of History Saint Louis University

Project Description:

Research in the summer of 2023 will focus on the Rock of Lough Key, a multi-period island castle of the MacDermot lords.  This castle was the site of one of two documented sieges in medieval Ireland.  Aerial survey in 2022 found evidence of a causeway to the mainland under the surface of the lake.

Students will also tour a number of archaeological sites in the north Roscommon area, including the islands of Lough Key, Boyle Abbey, Roscommon Castle, Rindoon Castle, Cruachan, and Carrowkeel.

The fees for the 2023 are set at $4300, and cover room, partial board, health and travel insurance, and onsite transportation and equipment.  Students are housed in log cabins near the site.  Tuition and college credit are available through Saint Louis University for an additional fee.  Airfare and transportation from Dublin to Carrick-on-Shanon, additional travel on weekends, and weekend meals are not included.

Applications for the project will be accepted until February 1, 2023, or until student positions are filled, whichever comes first.  A deposit of $3000 secures student position, with full fees due on March 1, 2021.

Period(s) of Occupation: Medieval

An American archaeological field school in Ireland. This ongoing field survey and excavation examines the rich and complex history and archaeology of one of the major Gaelic lordships of medieval Ireland, the MacDermot of Moylurg. Our first two seasons of field work have revealed a number of rich sites for exploration, including a moated site, several agricultural settlements, and island fortifications. Following our groundbreaking season of 2019 where we discovered extensive medieval remains for Gaelic lordly settlement. our 2022 season uncovered an incredible collection of artifacts and buildings. Evidence of metal working and feasting (including over 30,000 animal bones recovered) with high status artifacts made for an exciting 2022 season!

Project Size: 1-24 participants

Minimum Age: 18

Experience Required: No experience is required.

Room and Board Arrangements:
Students are housed in vacation cabins near the town of Knockvicar, Co Roscommon.  Students cook meals for themselves in community with the staff.  There are a number of pubs and eating establishments in the surrounding neighborhood. The cabins can be seen at Cost: $4300 for four weeks

Academic Credit:
6 credits offered by Saint Louis University. Tuition: fees not available at this time.

Contact Information:

Thomas Finan

Department of History, Saint Louis University

Saint Louis




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