Sitting partially exposed in the hollow of the strange mound behind the Hellfire Club, a dark lump of igneous rock served as a handy border to many bonfires over the centuries. However, those who enjoyed the warmth of the fire while lying up against the comfortably curved bank of the mound may not have realised that the mound they rested upon was the remains of an ancient tomb, and that plain looking dark stone was carved with symbols and designs that are over 5,000 years old.
The discovery of the artwork was the result of incredible serendipity. The surface of the stone has been damaged by fires and weathering, so the artwork is almost completely imperceptible to the naked eye. Had we dug our trenches anywhere else on site we would not have discovered it, and had we excavated during the summer, the higher flatter sunlight may not have revealed the faint trace of the artwork.
As the stone was sitting in a disturbed modern layer of material relating to picnics and parties, it was outside of its original context. We removed it quite early in the dig, though due to the many fires that had been lit upon it, it fractured into four large fragments as we began to lift it from the trench. As we did not originally notice anything particularly unusual about the stone, we (with some difficulty) lifted it out of the trench and set it on the side, so it would be close at hand for when we began to backfill the trenches.
Más información: http://www.abartaheritage.ie/megalithic-art-discovered-at-the-hellfire-club/