The Poisen Glen and various places

                                                  We are after having the most searingly hot summer since 1995

   So we did rove out to view various places once more                                                              


Like this valley – originally known by local people as the Heavenly Glen –

Yet an error was made by an English cartographer, when he confused the Gaelic word for Heaven (neamh) with the word for poison (neimhe)


hence – The Poisen Glen

dunlewey church

Dunlewey church

This landmark church which nestles at the foot of Mount Errigal is made of white marble quarried from within a hundred yards – but the quarry is now depleted.


 ‘The white marble of Dunlewy is said to be of an excellent quality and its bed very extensive, traced over half a mile square, and is finely granular so it can be used in nicest sculpture, its texture and whiteness approach more of the Parian than Carrara marble, being free from mica, quartzite and other substances which interfere with the chisel’  (from the Geological Survey of Ireland 1891)

We leave The Poisen Glen to travel eastwards to Churchill to see the home and studio of artist Derek Hill 


Originally farm stables then Derek Hill’s studio – now a gallery

He gifted his Georgian house to the state, along with its contents – (no photographs allowed inside) –  a priceless collection of paintings and ceramics which include Picasso, Renoir and gorgeous wallpapers by William Morris


The building itself has been properly restored with Lime by the Office of Public Works


T’is truly a must visit for art and heritage lovers while on the brink of  Colmcille’s own Lough Gartan


Talking of of mistakes

This nineteen-seventies ‘reception area’ that erupts like a crime between a Georgian Manor and an early eigthteenth century cottage



Behold Brown Hall – near Ballintra


With its original long house being infinitely more interesting –  lime rendered –  hand blown glass window panes


Although a grand cottage of its day – it follows the vernacular premise of being only one room deep


althougth this kitchen has an atmosphere of the creeps



While in the Georgian ‘wing’ dusty portraits do keep an eye on things


Who would not rather be under the roof of a comely stone cottage

P1120531‘In a finished house a flame is brought to the hearth

Then a table between the door and the window

Where a stranger will eat..”


‘The cupboard will have its loaf and bottle come winter’


and the beans of the earth grow blight free in our small field


2 thoughts on “The Poisen Glen and various places

  1. Is there an irish word for “gemutlichkeit”? Those three cottage pics are the epitome of quiet contentment, esp if that rake of pratty ended in the pot on the stove. Superb.

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