Thursday Doors


It’s back to Youghal for Thursday Doors this week and a visit to a medieval building, or what’s left of it. North Abbey Dominican priory was founded in 1268 by Thomas FitzMaurice FitzGerald. His maternal grandfather, Maurice FitzGerald, 2nd Lord of Offaly, founded the Franciscan Friary of South Abbey, on the other side of the town, in 1224 but unfortunately, nothing remains of that structure. The Fitzgeralds or Geraldines of Kildare were Anglo-Normans and came from quite modest beginnings. The family arrived in Ireland with Richard ‘Strongbow’ de Clare in 1169 and the pioneering exploits of Maurice FitzGerald earned him the reward of land in County Kildare. Strongbow, who inherited the nickname from his father, was a Cambro-Norman lord notable for his leading role in the Norman invasion of Ireland.

Giraldus Cambrensis (b. 1147), a distinguished author who wrote ‘Topography of Ireland’ and ‘History of the Conquest of Ireland’ recorded his impression of Strongbow as this; “His complexion was somewhat ruddy and his skin freckled; he had grey eyes, feminine features, a weak voice, and short neck. For the rest, he was tall in stature, and a man of great generosity and of courteous manner. What he failed of accomplishing by force, he succeeded in by gentle words. In time of peace he was more disposed to be led by others than to command. Out of the camp he had more the air of any ordinary man-at-arms than of a general-in-chief; but in action the mere soldier was forgotten in the commander. With the advice of those about him, he was ready to dare anything; but he never ordered any attack relying on his own judgment, or rashly presuming on his personal courage. The post he occupied in battle was a sure rallying point for his troops. His equanimity and firmness in all the vicissitudes of war were remarkable, being neither driven to despair in adversity, nor puffed up by success.” 


The ruins of North Abbey sit in the grounds of the local cemetery, which is located close to the center of Youghal town. By the amount of earth filling up the entrance, you can see how much of the old abbey is ‘sitting in the ground’ but at least that lovely arch is still visible.


Many thanks for stopping by and if you head on over to Norm’s blog there are lots more Thursday Doors worth viewing. Some even have doors in them – unlike mine this week. 😉


About Jean Reinhardt

Author of 'A Pocket Full of Shells' an Amazon International best seller, Jean writes young adult and historical fiction. She has been known to shed a tear over Little House on the Prairie.
This entry was posted in castles and ruins, Historical buildings, History, Ireland, photo challenges, Thursday Doors and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

53 Responses to Thursday Doors

  1. Prior-01 says:

    Really enjoys the variety of this historic site – lived the stacks of stone that you can tell were hand placed. Amazing to see it has endured so long!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. jan says:

    Amazing ruin nicely photographed against the sky! Great job!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. dimlamp says:

    Interesting choice this week. Enjoy the photo-op sunshine while you can. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. That is dramatic. The stone in the second photo shows such strength but seeing the sky through the opening seems so fragile. Nice one. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. jesh stg says:

    I love it when man-made and nature melt together like in your second capture:) Thanks for the history!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Great historical ruin and history! The image of the wall with the window is really neat. You had an amazing sky for that window image too.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Remarkable photos and history that allow my imagination to take me back to that time. Wondering what it was like. Impressive quote about Strongbow – great use of descriptive words!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Dan Antion says:

    Thanks for sharing a view of the remains of the abbey. It’s easier to imagine what it must have looked like that it is to imagine how people, at that time, built such a majestic feature. I love seeing these images and learning about things, that we in use hundreds of years before anyone thought about finding our country.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. joannesisco says:

    It is really remarkable to see such ancient ruins, but also the impact of how the earth reclaims everything eventually … even a strong and mighty abbey. I am absolutely stunned by how far it is sunk into the earth!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Norm 2.0 says:

    Wonderful mix of history and photography again this week Jean. Thanks for adding to my ongoing education about this wonderful part of our world.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Aquileana says:

    Excellent post and gallery… I much enjoyed learning about North Abbey Dominican priory and its founder. Have a great weekend. Sending love Aquileana 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  12. pommepal says:

    Amazing how that wall is still standing with no supports and the window makes a lovely outline against the sky

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Looks like a fascinating place Jean – I think I’d be there for a day or two with my camera! Most interesting glimpse of history as always! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Jean, week after week you never disappoint. Once again beautiful and fascinating!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. pbmgarden says:

    Fascinating place.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. socialbridge says:

    Wonderful, Jean. Youghal has such a rich history.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Really enjoyed this post. Great historical ruins

    Liked by 1 person

  18. HangryFork says:

    Fantastic pictures Jean!

    I think I’d be freaked out if I lived close to a cemetery. It looks like the town touches the cemetery wall.

    My mom almost bought a house right next door to an American Indian Cemetery. The cemetery was so overgrown, it just looked like an empty overgrown lot. Then one of my kids caught a glimpse of the half hanging sign. Yikes.

    Shelly @

    Liked by 1 person

    • I don’t think I would like to live so close to a cemetery either. I would hate to be reminded of my own mortality every time I looked through the bedroom window. However friends of mine are in the process of buying one of the houses backing onto that cemetery and another young couple I know have recently moved into one close by. It doesn’t bother any of them at all.


  19. Love the history and Strongbow sounds like a great guy!


    Liked by 1 person

  20. Hemangini says:

    The pictures are so beautiful. I specially love the one where you can over see the town and the river/ocean maybe? Don’t know. But so much effort in this post. Love it.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Ali Isaac says:

    Well that was very interesting, Jean. Gerald’s certainly seemed to think highly of Strongbow.

    Liked by 1 person

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