Round Tower

The only remnant of the early monastery founded by St. Mochua (who died in 657) is a very well-preserved Round Tower, measuring 96 feet in height. It is one of the widest Round Towers in the country. It is unique in that it has a double Romanesque doorway with fine ornamentation including heads with intertwined hair. There is also a Romanesque window in the third floor.

The deaths of monks in the old monastery are reported between 880 and 1007, and reference is made to a church in 1069. But the Round Tower probably dates to the 12th century.

The monastery was re-founded in later medieval times by the O'Mores. After the Suppression, the monastery and lands were granted to Sir Thomas Loftus and later (1609) to Richard Cosby. It was probably one of the Cosby family who transformed what was a medieval church into a castle; only the east wall of the castle, incorporating an arch of the 15th century church, remains. The last friar of the monastery was killed in 1650.

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