Earliest Habitation

The earliest people to the area probably came via the northern part of Ireland around 7,000 or more years ago and moved down the coast to inhabit Dalkey Island where traces of their occupation and hunter gatherer lifestyle have been excavated. There remained a great collection of sea shells, flint tools and the bones of various sea creatures which formed their diet, including dolphin, conger eel, wrasse, mullet, cod and tope. A collection of Bann flint flakes and tools seem to have come from their original arrival areas in the north. To travel here presumably along the coast and to fish for tope and dolphin indicates that they had significant seaworthy vessels. There were also the bones of many birds and of bears which they would have hunted on the mainland. They may have used the island as a safe early habitation from which they made excursions inland to hunt. One of the earliest pottery vessels found in Ireland and a very fine flint javelin head were also found there. However, they soon moved to the mainland and the south-east Dublin area was inhabited around the end of the Mesolithic period (7,000-5,000 years ago).

By about 6,000 years ago people had settled the mainland and were well established enough to commence farming. We have a number of Neolithic monuments surviving in the area as tangible links to the early people including a small dolmen or Portal Tomb at Shankill and the great dolmen in the river valley at Brennanstown in Foxrock. There is another large dolmen on the hill at Kilternan. The passage tomb on Two Rock Mountain would also have been visible from much of this area. It is believed that these tombs had significant ceremonial importance to the early people.

previousPrevious - Dún Laoghaire – Rathdown
Next - Bronze Agenext