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C.Garner and P.Wright

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Cong Abbey

August 13, 2001
Cong, County Mayo, Ireland

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Cong Abbey
Above: Entrance to the Abbey

Right: 12th century doorway
Cong Abbey : Doorway

Cong Abbey was founded in 1106 as an Augustinian abbey by Turlough O' Connor (Tairrdelbach Ua Conchobar). The abbey was built on the site of an earlier monastery (Cunga Feichin) founded by St. Feichin in 623. Cong Abbey was an educational center and at one time housed 3000 students. The last high king of Ireland stayed here until his death in 1198. His body was later exhumed and reinterred with his father, Turlough O' Connor.

Along with the other abbeys throughout Ireland, it was decommissioned in 1542 by Henry VIII and fell into ruin. In 1850's, Sir Benjamin Guiness restored many parts of the abbey.