Poulnabrone (Poll na Bron or Hollow of the Millstone) Dolmen


Poulnabrone (Poll na Bron or Hollow of the Millstone) Dolmen, is perhaps one of Ireland’s best-known and most beautiful ancient monuments. It is a Portal Tomb, dating back to the Neolithic period, probably between 4200 BC and 3000 BC. Poulnabrone is sometimes translated as “Hole of Sorrows” however, “brone” is derived from the Irish bro, meaning quern or millstone. With its dominating presence on the limestone landscape of the Burren, the monument was probably a centre for ceremony and ritual until well into the Bronze Age period.

Poulnabrone is associated with the legend of the tragic lovers, Diarmuid & Grainne. In fact many of the approximately 174 portal tombs found across Ireland are actually known as Leaba Diarmuid agus Grainne’ (Bed of Diarmuid and Grainne). According to the legend, Diarmuid built one of these beds each night while the couple were on the run, fleeing from Fionn Mac Cumhaill, to whom Grainne was betrothed.