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The Lisburn Area In The Early Christian Period Part 2: Some People And Places

Richard Warner
 Fig. 1. The Crew Stone on Crew Hill (drawn by Deirdre Crone, 1990)  Fig. 2. Stone `chair' on Crew Hill (drawn by Deirdre Crone, 1990).
Fig. 1. The Crew Stone on Crew Hill (drawn by Deirdre Crone, 1990)  Fig. 2. Stone `chair' on Crew Hill (drawn by Deirdre Crone, 1990). 

Who Were The Ulaid?

We have no real Irish historical sources dating before about the eighth century A.D. but the writers of that time and later, working in the Christian monasteries such as Armagh and Bangor, recorded the events of their own time and the myths and traditions of more distant times that had been passed down by word of mouth. In pre-Christian times (that is, before the sixth century A.D.), if we may believe these traditions, there were two main population groups in the north of Ireland -the Érainn (pronounced air-ren) and the Cruthin (pronounced kruhin). It is not clear whether these should be thought of as racial or political groupings and whether the names referred to the mass of the people or just to their rulers and aristocracy. We suspect that they were racial labels applying only to the upper classes. The most important of the northern Érainn were known as the Ulaid (pronounced Ully), from which the province got its name (Ulster from Uladhstir, a Norse rendering of the Irish Tír Ulaid -'land of the Ulaid'). The tradition was that at their heyday (at some unknown time before the fourth century A.D.), the territory of the Ulaid, which was later known as Cóiced nUladh (the 'Fifth of the Ulaid'), extended south to the rivers Boyne and Drowes. Despite the fact that the name Ulaid became applied to the area and people in general, it is likely that it was originally the name of a ruling dynasty who practised some sort of suzereignty over the other peoples of the north from their capital at Emain Macha (pronounced Evvan Magha), now Navan near Armagh (Mallory, 1983). The Ulaid were the people around whom the ancient mythological stories known as the 'Ulster cycle', including those concerning the hero Cú Chulainn (pronounced Koohulling), were woven. (For this section in general, see Byrne, 1965 and 1971, ch. 7; Flanagan, 1978; Doherty, 1989).

An Alexandrian geographer of the second century A.D., Claudius Ptolemaius or Ptolemy as we know him today, wrote a geography of the then known world, in which he recorded the names and positions (using latitude and longitude) of tribes, promontories, rivers and 'cities' (or tribal centres). He included Ireland in this geography and his maps were not bettered for well over a thousand years. Ptolemy's geography is the earliest detailed source we have for the peoples and place-names of early Ireland, and it is interesting to compare what he wrote with the traditions of that ancient time written some centuries later by the early Irish monks. Ptolemy shows the mouth of a river Logia where Belfast Lough stands. Logia would be a primitive Irish form of the old Irish Láeg, 'calf', and indeed, the original Irish name of the tough was Loch ig, the 'tough of the calf'. The modern name of the river, Lagan, is not a river name at all, but has been applied to the river in more recent times from a deep marshy valley through which it passes between Dromara and Dromore, known in Irish as the 'Lagan' and in English as 'The Hollow' (Irish Lagan means 'hollow'). Ptolemy placed two tribes in the area of modern south-east Ulster, the Darini and tire Voluntii. The name Voluntii is almost certainly a misspelling by Ptolemy (or his later copyists) of Ulutii, which would be the primitive format the old Irish name Ulaid. interestingly. Ptolemy also referred to the Érainn under the earlier form of their name lverni, and located them in what is now Munster. (O'Rahilly, 1946, eh. 1 for discussion on Ptolemy; Raftery, 1951, pl. 14 for a reconstruction of the map).

As for the Cruthin, we do not know where they were located in prehistoric times (they are not referred to by Ptolemy), but we suspect they occupied the lands west of the lower Bann, in what is now Co. Derry, where their name is preserved in the place names Duncrun (the 'fort of the Cruthin') and Drumcroon (the 'hill of the Cruthin'). The name comes from the much earlier Pretani which was a name for some or all of the peoples of the British Isles as early as the sixth century B.C. Cruthin was also the name used by the Irish monks when writing about the people in northern Britain who were known to the Romans as the Picti, or the 'painted folk'. It is quite incorrect to refer, as is often done, to the Irish Cruthin as Picts, for the relationship between the Irish Cruthin and the British peoples is not at all clear. (See O'Rahilly, 1946, app. 1; Byrne, 1965, 43).

During the period between the fourth and sixth centuries A.D., northern Ireland was to witness great changes in populations, as peoples from the midlands moved north and took over lands once occupied by or ruled by northern Érainn and Cruthin. I must stress that we are not necessarily talking about mass migrations, or replacements of ordinary people, but perhaps only the movement of warrior aristocrats. In any case, a number of groups of people going under the general name of Airgialla (pronounced Orreealer) moved into mid-Ulster and others, known as Uí Néill (pronounced Ee Nail, meaning 'descendants of Niall' of the Nine Hostages, ethnically known as Gould, modern 'Gaels') moved into the north-west. In doing so, they displaced the native peoples, or at least their leaders, towards the east. Two recorded events illustrate this movement, and although the actual dates recorded by the early annalists may be questioned, we have no reason to doubt the general accuracy of the records.

The Annals of Ulster, the earliest and most reliable of the ancient annals that survive, tell us simply that 'the battle of Achad Leithderg in Fernmag' happened 4,334 years after the creation. Achad Leithderg has not been identified but Fernmag was (at the time of the annalists) roughly the Monaghan valley. The Annals of the Four Masters, a seventeenth century compilation from earlier works, some of which are lost, is fuller on this event. Under the year 331 A.D., we read 'The battle of Achadh leithderg in Fernmagh was fought by the three Collas against the Ulaid in which fell... the last king of the Ulaid at Emhain. They afterwards burned Emhain, and the Ulaid did not dwell there since. They also took from the Ulaid that part of the province extending from the Righ [the Newry river] and Loch nEachach [Lough Neagh] westwards.' Another early manuscript tells us, referring to the same event, how the Ulaid were routed as far as Glenn Righ and `swordland' made of their old territories (O'Brien, 1962, 151).

From these references, we can say that the kings of the old Ulaid, who resided in pre-historic times at Navan, were evicted and pushed east of the line between Newry and Lough Neagh. Consequently, as we know from other records, their descendants who became known as the Dál Fiatach (pronounced dawl veeatagh) were more or less confined to the eastern side of Co. Down. We have every reason to believe that this happened by 400 A.D. In a similar way, the Cruthin were evicted from west of the Bann. This process was more or less finalised by the year 563 when `The battle of Móin Dairi Lothair [Moneymore, Co. Derry] was won over the Cruthin by the Uí Néill of the North'.

Although I have used the term 'peoples' for these early groups, by the seventh century the ethnic divisions had apparently become secondary to smaller groupings, for which we can use the word `tribe', a rather inadequate translation of the Irish word tuath. A tribe was a group of people who owed primary allegiance to a single king. By the eighth centaury there were about 150 tribes in Ireland, some small and weak and some large and powerful. They were frequently at war with each other and their fortunes rose and fell. Some tribes dominated other tribes politically and for various strategic reasons several tribes would often form themselves into a loose federation with an overlong chosen from the kings of the individual tribes. Usually one or two tribes would dominate the federation. The ethnic or racial labels such as Érainn , Cruthin or Goíldil continued to be used at least by the literary monks and it is likely that the tribes were aware of the ethnic group to which they or their kings belonged, but on the whole the federations were not constructed on an ethnic basis. Although the early historical documentation makes a great deal of the tribal and ethnic divisions, these are not identifiable by the archaeologist. Indeed, it appears that the life of the people and their material culture, were virtually identical throughout the whole of Ireland over the six hundred or so years of the early Christian Period.

In much the same way as I qualified the meaning of the ethnic background of a `people' I must also make it clear that when we talk about tribal names in this way we are not necessarily talking about the mass of the people themselves. It is quite likely that these early recorded tribal names were those of an aristocratic section of the people, or a dynasty, who might have had quite different ethnic origins from the ordinary folk. The truth is that most early historical and archaeological records are really about the upper classes and we can never be sure whether the ordinary folk are to be included in any interpretation we make from those records. Early records make it quite clear that there were various grades of tribe, very much based on the ethnic status (and political clout) of their kings and the same rule applies as it does to individuals-the weaker or lesser tribes are less likely to be referred to in the historical sources.

By the eighth century, then, the main northern branches of the Érainn and Cruthin were confined east of the lower Bann and the Newry river, where, with people whose ethnic background is unknown, they existed as a number of tribes in a single political federation. The main Érainn tribes were the Dál Fiatach (in modern east Down, these were the descendants of the Ulaid of Navan), the Uí Echach (pronounced Ee Eghagh) of the Ards and the Dál Riata (pronounced Dawl Reeada) of north-east Antrim. Minor tribes included the Uí Blaithmeic (pronounced Ee Blahvic) of north Down. The main tribes of the Cruthin were the Dál nAraidi (pronounced Dawl Narrijy) of mid Antrim and the Uí Echach Cobo of west Down. Minor tribes included the Latharna of Larne. The Dál Fiatach were known as the Ulaid to the early writers and the Dál nAraide as Cruthin, though the whole federation of these peoples was also known as Ulaid. It was, most of the time, roughly coterminous with the modem counties of Antrim and Down. The Dál Fiatach king was usually the overking, although occasionally the king of one of the main Cruthin tribes obtained the overkingship. The existence of the federation did not prevent the individual tribes fighting with one another, which they did frequently. Some of the Ulaid kings were powerful in Irish terms, and the fortunes of the Ulaid fluctuated considerably. In the sixth century they probably controlled almost as far south as the Boyne and for a time held the Isle of Man (Byrne, 1965). A Dál nAraidi king, Congal Cláen, made several attempts to win back the territories once held by the north-eastern peoples,  his hopes being finally dashed in 637 at the battle of Mag Roth (Moira, Co Down).

Finally, it must be stressed, and should be obvious from the foregoing, that presently popular claims that the people of modern Ulster descend from the Cruthin is a gross oversimplification of the real state of affairs and is misleading and wrongheaded.

The Borderlands and the Dál mBuinne.

The reader should for the following section refer to the map in part one of this article (Lisburn Historical Society Journal, vol. 7). Although the kings of Dál Fiatach were usually located south of the Lagan in modern Co. Down, there were occasions in which they had their headquarters north of the river. For instance, the ninth century king Matudán son of Muiredach, who was also king of the federation, appears to have had his capital at of near the Cave Hill, north of Belfast, which is also known as Benn Madighan (the `peak of Matudán'). As I showed in an earlier article, a branch of the Dál Fiatach kings set up their headquarters at Lissue, a ringfort just west of Lisburn and north of the river Lagan (LHSJ, vol. 6).I suggested that the fort was built either by Áed, son of Eochaid, who would have flourished in about the middle of the ninth century or by his son Aínbith. From Áed most of the kings of the Ulaid descended, and it is his name that is preserved in that of the short-lived dynastic line founded by his son Aínbith - Clann Liss Áedha, 'the family of the fort of Áed' (Dobbs, 1923, 84). Áed''s sons Ainbíth, Airemon and Eochocán were all kings of the Ulaid, but we do not know whether Aínbith's brothers also ruled from Lissue.

On Aínbith's death in 882 in a disastrous skirmish between the Ulaid and the Conaille of modern Co. Louth, he was succeeded as king jointly by his brothers Eochocán and Airemon. Eochocán was murdered in 883 by his own ambitions and when Airemon was killed by Vikings in 886, Aínbith's son Fiachna (probably one of the murderers) succeeded him as king, bringing the kingship back to the Lissue clan. He did not long benefit from this, being killed the same year 'by his comrades'. As a twelfth century poem on the kings of the Ulaid puts it -'A year the son of Ainbíth, generous and very fair Fiachna who excelled every creature: he fell treacherously at the hands of his people in a hard conflict in his round house' (Byrne, 1964). This apparently trivial description of Fiachna's house as round (or hemispherical as the word used can also be translated) is unexpected in the context of the poem, and rather implies that the house was famous for its shape and size at the time. The excavation of Lissue (LHSJ, vol. 6) showed clearly that the fort had contained a very large round house some forty metres in diameter. We have no evidence that the Dál Fiatach continued their attempt to rule from north of the Lagan after the ninth century.

The heartland of Dál nAraidi was the Six-mile River valley (known then as Mag Linne, which has become modern Moylinny). Except for their ninth century extension across the river Lagan, Dál Fiatach were usually south of the river. In other words, the lands between the Lagan valley and Crumlin, and between the mountains and Lough Neagh, were borderlands between these powerful tribes. Not surprisingly, the two locatable battles between them took place on or near the Lagan, in A.D. 668 at Fertas, the ford that was much later to become the city of Belfast and in A.D. 1025 at Ard Achaidh, which seems to be modern Derriaghy (see, for instance, Reeves, 1847, 46, note g). Early writings describe the area and its people sometimes as belonging to Dál nAraidi and sometimes as belonging to Dál Fiatach, and this is precisely what we would expect. In the medieval period much of this area was known as Killultagh, Irish Coill Ultach - the 'wood of the Ulaid'. Sixteenth century descriptions show it to have been very heavily wooded. The name survives in the townland of Derrykillultagh and Killultagh House in that townland. It is known that some baronies reflect earlier tribal areas and it is interesting that the borderland we have defined is fairly exactly the area of the barony of Upper Masserene. We therefore expect a single tribe to have dwelt in this area.

In fact we can locate in the borderland area a tribe known as the Dál mBuinne (pronounced Dawl Mwinner). This spelling of their name is preferable to  that on my 1989 map (LHSL vol. 7). These people have been confused by some early authors with a small tribe with a similar name in north Antrim, and they may indeed have been related. Their name, and possibly their original territory, is preserved in the medieval rural deanery of Dalboyn-which was roughly bounded by Aghagallon, Blaris, Drumbo, Derryiaghy, Tullyrusk and Glenavy (Reeves, 1847, 44 and 172). This is the borderland area as we have defined it, with a small extension south of the Lagan. The ethnic background of Dál mBuinne is difficult to establish, some sources implying that they were Ulaid and others that they were Cruthin. In fact an ancient text on the Ulaid describes them thus: 'The five main tribes of Dál Buindi are: Dál Corb of the caves (?), Dál Buain, cenél Máeláin, Uí Dásluaga, cenél nErnain and the Gailine. Dál Buchalla is the sixth.' (Dobbs, 1923, 76; clearly the monk who wrote this was not good at arithmetic). The text mentions also as sub-tribes the Uí Scuirri and Dál Corb Fabair and goes on to tell us that three of these `tribes' are of Munster origin, one (Gailine) is of Leinster origin, one is from north Britain and only four descend from the Ulaid. Now these sub-groups of Dál mBuinne are unlikely to have been strictly tribes in the sense of having individual kings and legal autonomy and we should probably think of them as a mixum gatherum of minor and ancient septs, of which Dál mBuinne was the prominent one. Indeed, this is probably the image we should hold of most of the Irish tribes. Although Dál mBuinne were technically an autonomous tribe, at least by the eleventh century, we can be sure that they were dominated in every way by their more powerful northern and southern neighbours. Of the named sub-tribes the only one I can locate is the Gailine, who may be preserved in the name of the village of Aghagallon.

The giving and receiving of gifts and tribute between higher and lesser kings was a most important part of early Irish politics, and the values of these are itemised for the eleventh century in the Lebor na Cert or 'book of rights'. Here we team, for instance, that-'The King of bright Dál mBuinne is entitled to eight horns, eight cups, eight slaves, eight valuable women and eight horses for racing' from the overking of the Ulaid. Not quite as useful as the ships given to the king of Duibthrian 'on Loch Cuan' (Dufferin on Strangford Lough) and the king of the Arda (Ards), but as Dál mBuinne were along the north side of the lower Lagan, they hardly required ships.

As a mix of 'second-class' peoples, their location in this hinterland, or buffer zone, between the major political groups of the Ulaid is not surprising and they undoubtedly gave their allegiance to whichever group was in the ascendancy. Technically, having a king made them autonomous but in reality they would have been totally subservient to the dominant tribe to their north or south. Like all buffer peoples they clearly had to play a careful game, and would have been the main victims in any battle in their territory. For instance, the battle of Cráeb Telcha in 1004, which we shall see below was in the north of their territory, ranged right the way across their lands southwards and across the Lagan to Duneight and Drumbo. When the high king invaded Ulster, and defeated the Ulaid in AD 1130, plundering as far as the Ards, the slaughter of the Ulaid included not only the powerful king of the Dál nAraidi, Aed Ua Loingsigh but also the king of Dál mBuinne, one Gilla Pátraic Ua Serraigh (O'Sherry), who was tributary to him. The victors pillaged as far as the Ards, taking 'a thousand captives ... and many thousands of cows and horses'. The hardship occasioned by this sort of pillaging can be imagined. It is vividly described by observers during the Elizabethan campaigns of the 1590s and usually resulted in famine.

Cráeb Telcha

The main sacred place of the early Christian Ulaid was Cráeb Telcha, the 'tree of the small hill /hillock', which was undoubtedly a sacred tree. Sacred trees, usually ash, are known to have been important ritual objects in early Ireland and were usually known in Old Irish by the words Cráeb and Bile (Lucas, 1963). Irish Cráeb gave the modern place-name elements Crew and Creeve. Near Glenavy are the adjoining townlands of Crew and Crew Park, and in the first is Crew Hill, locally 'the Crew' (not Crewe, as the district council would have us believe, judging from the road signs!). In the sixteenth century Crew Hill was known as Crewhollage and Knockcruhollogh (from the Irish Cráeb Telcha and Cnoc Cráeb  Telcha, 'the hill of Cráeb Telcha') (Flanagan, 1970). On Crew Hill is a very large basalt boulder (fig. 1), possibly a glacial erratic (that is, deposited at this spot by melting ice in the ice age) and therefore probably always at or near this spot. It is locally called 'The Crew Stone' and local tradition is very strong that this is the site of the Cráeb Telcha (O'Laverty, 1880, 294f; Watson, 1892, 52; McKavanagh, 1968, 8; Totten, 1980, 30 with photograph; Flanagan, 1970, 29. I am indebted to Mr. F. McCorry of Crew for assisting me in my inspection of the monuments on Crew Hill). It has been much dug around, and even moved a slight distance (Watson, loc cit; McKavanagh, loc cit.). It is tempting to believe that the `sacred tree' was somewhere near this spot and it is worth remembering that sacred places in Ireland were not infrequently marked by a great stone of some sort. It has to be said, however, that the identity of the Cráeb Telcha with this spot on Crew Hill is not proven, and indeed the term Tulach (of which Telcha is the genitive) can be rendered in such a context as '(artificial) mound' rather than '(natural) hill'. The use of mounds for ritual purposes such as inauguration is well attested (Byrne, 1973, ch. l; Warner, 1988, 57 and Lucas, 1963,26) gives a reference from the ancient laws which implies that a mound, a sacred tree and the 'seat' of the king could be virtually the same thing. The tree was, it seems, not infrequently on a mound. In this case we might expect the Cráeb Telcha to be anywhere in the townlands of Crew and Crew Park and I am struck by the implication of the name of a farm in the latter-Crew Mount. There is to this day a low mound by the house (I an indebted to Mr. McCord for showing me this). Excavation might well identify this sacred tree (see Manning, 1988), but only when we have been able to locate its position with some accuracy by some other means.

It was an act of great severity for one tribe to cut down the sacred tree of another tribe, as it was symbolic of the defeat of their tribal ethos, not just their physical defeat. From ancient times the destruction of the sanctuaries of one's enemies was always regarded as part of their humiliation. In A.D. 1099, according to the Annals of Ulster, just such an event took place here, when the king of the Cenél Eógain from Co. Tyrone took his armies 'across Toome into Ulaid; the Ulaid were in camp at Cráeb Telcha. The two forces of horsemen meet, the force of the Ulaid is defeated ....The Ulaid leave their camp and the Cenél Eógain before the Ulaid, to avenge this act, made an expedition to Tulach Óc and cut down its trees'. Tulach Óc was the sacred grove of the Cenél Eógain,  and was at Tullaghoge in Co. Tyrone. For this the Ulaid in their turn paid dearly soon after, loosing a thousand cattle to the king of Cenél Eógain.

Cráeb Telcha had been the scene of a terrible defeat for the Ulaid in A.D. 1004, when the Cenél Eógain slaughtered 'Eochaid son of Ardgal, king of the Ulaid, and his kinsman Dub Tuinne and his two sons, ú Duilig and Domnall, .... and the army both noble and base, Gairbíth king of Uí Echach, and Gilla Pátraic son of Tomaltach, and Cumuscach son of Flathroí, and Dub Slánga son of Áed, and Cathahán son of Étrú, and Coinéne son of Muirchertach, as well as the elite of the Ulaid: and the combat ranged as far as Dún Echdach [Duneight] and Druim Bó [Drumbo]'. The only consolation for the Ulaid, who lost there a whole generation of nobility, was that the king of the Cenél Eógain, heir apparent to the high kingship of Ireland, died in the same battle. That such an important and decisive battle should have taken place at a sacred spot is not unexpected.

According to the Cogadh Gáedhel re Gallaibh (the War of the Gaedhil with the Gaill, 136) the high king Brian Borúma (Brian Boru, in A.D. 1006, made a circuit of Ireland crossing into Ulaid at Camus, near Coleraine, and stopped at Cráeb Telcha where he received from the Ulaid' 1200 beeves, 1200 hogs and 1200 wethers' and gave to the Ulaid' 1200 horses, gold, and silver and clothing'. He also received pledges of support from the kings and nobles of the Ulaid, and the sacred tree of the Ulaid was an appropriate place for this to be done.

There is a local tradition, as I have already hinted above, that the Crew was the inauguration place of the kings of Ulster, and this is assumed to be the case by many recent writers (references cited for the stone, above, and O'Laverty, 1880, 293; Byrne, 1973, 27). By the Ulster kings we would mean the overkings of the Ulaid, rather than the kings of the individual tribes (although Byrne, 1973, 27, states his belief that it was a Dál Fiatach inauguration place). This inauguration status is supported to an extent by entries in the already-mentioned annals, and We might expect the inauguration place of the overkingship, shared as it was between the tribes to the north and the south, to have been located in this 'neutral' territory. There are some references (Lucas, op. cit.) to inauguration at sacred trees. Further support relating to Crew also comes from the annals. In A.D. 1148 the king of the Cenél Eógain of Tyrone, Muirchertach Mac Lochlainn (later to become the High King of Ireland) was pursuing a policy of treating the once independent Ulaid kings as vassal lords. He expelled from the overkingship of the Ulaid the Dál Fiatach king ú Uladh (`hound of the Ulaid') son of Donn Sléibe. His own supporters, the kings of Bréifne (north-east Connaught, especially Co. Cavan) and of Airgialla, were so worried by this that, according to the Annals of the Four Masters, they 'brought an army into Ulaid, as far as Cráeb Telcha; and they plundered the country and placed ú Uladh in his kingdom again.' There is a strong indication that this re-inauguration took place at Cráeb Telcha, as we would expect if we are right in our interpretation of the place. Indeed the Crew stone may well support our identification of Crew Hill as the site of the Cráeb, for as Byrne (1973, 27) has put it, `A slab or flagstone was an essential item of the inaugural furniture' (as for instance at Tara).

By the side of the road on the slope of Crew Hill is a stone roughly in the form of a chair (fig. 2), locally called the `wishing chair' (Totten, 1980, 31 with photograph). While stone chairs are relatively common in Ireland, and most are almost certainly either purely natural or are recent garden decorations, it is true that in medieval times some Irish kings were inaugurated on a chair (Hayes-McCoy, 1964, 8).

According to O'Laverty (1880, 295) 'On the summit of the hill a few stone-lined graves belonging to the pagan period have been discovered'. Now stone-lined graves can belong to the early bronze age, the early iron age or the early Christian period. We do not know why O'Laverty assumed them to be pagan, unless he was aware of the presence in them of grave goods. The association of cist-graves of that date with `standing' stones is not unknown (Ó Ríordáin, 1979,143), and it may be that the Crew stone marked one of these graves. Christian stone-lined graves are quite common in Co. Antrim, but there is no indication, either archaeological or historical, of a church site. We are left then unable to interpret this cemetery on Crew Hill or to indicate its status with respect to the postulated site of Cráeb Telcha.

Just south-east of the Crew stone, still on top of Crew Hill, is a fine earthen ringfort with two strong banks and a single deep ditch between them. There appears not to have been an original entrance causeway across the ditch, a rare occurrence which we found also at Lissue (LHSJ, vol. 6). O'Laverty (1880, 295) supposed it to have been a royal residence, and we would indeed be inclined to interpret it as the defended habitation of a person of some importance, perhaps the keeper of the sacred site or even the king of the Ulaid when he was visiting the Cráeb.


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Richard Warner is Keeper (Acting) of the Antiquities Department of the Ulster Museum, where he specialises in the Early Iron Age and the Early Christian period.