Carbad More

Double Court Tomb - County Mayo

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G 18070 32655 (GPS 27min).
Visited June 2002

Carbad More stands in pasture land about 3km NW of Killala.  This is a double Court Tomb, with the main axis running NE-SW. The courts are situated one at each end, with the galleries back-to-back in the middle although it is thought that the two monuments were not joined. Almost no trace of the covering cairn(s) survives and both galleries were covered in thick vegetation during our visit preventing good photographs of their surviving structure. 
The SW tomb has the best preserved court, this is roughly circular and about 8m in diameter. The most intact arc is to the NE either side of the gallery entrance, and includes the two entrance jambs. A single upright stone stands on the far side of the court opposite the gallery entrance, this may have been one of the stones flanking the court entrance. The gallery is segmented into two chambers by a pair of jambs, and the sidewall structure is well preserved, but the back wall of the rear chamber is missing.
The NE tomb is a mirror opposite of the SW, with a circular court of similar diameter. The court here, however, has suffered much more at the hands of time. What surprised us most was how recent some of this damage was. We have seen photos of the NE tomb taken in the 1960's, since then a new track has been driven straight through the court. Although the track kinks as it transits the court, it looked to us as though some of the court stones at the SE may have been removed, or buried. We cannot understand why the track could not have been detoured around the tomb.
The gallery entrance jambs exist, and the front chamber has well preserved side walls. Both segmenting jambs are also present, but the rear chamber has lost the rear wall and some of the NW side wall.
The NW sidewalls of both galleries have stones standing a little way from them set perpendicular to the tomb axis, these may be surviving buttress stones.
This is a potentially fascinating site, but the dense vegetation over the galleries meant we could not get an overview of their structure, and the ugly modern track driven through the court of the NE tomb was annoying.

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