Medieval Ireland

Discover the challenges of wearing chain mail, what a puzzle jug was and other resources for learning about Medieval Ireland.

Discover who had power, who went on pilgrimage and where medieval pottery found in Ireland came from.

The tour begins at a wall-length image of the Bayeux Tapestry, and an explanation of how the Normans came to arrvive and settle in Ireland. Pupils then explore the Medieval Ireland exhibition, see the archaeological evidence about the past-times, power of and fighting tactics of the Anglo Normans and Gaelic Irish, and also the lives of Medieval women. Next they look at daily life and hear about the work and diet of the workers in towns and the countryside. The final part of the tour explains the power and central role of the Church, and the importance of religous festivals, pilgrimmage and artwork.     

Key Curriculum Strands
Junior Certificate History
Section I How we find out about the past
The work of the historian
Castle, Church & City

Maximum: 20 per group. Duration: approx. 45 minutes.

Lords a​nd Ladies Workshop

Using our handling collection discover power dressing in the Middle Ages with swords, spurs, chainmail and more!

Junior Certificate History
Section I How we find out about the past
The work of the historian
Castle, Church & City

Maximum: 30 per group. Duration: approx. 60 minutes.
Available Wednesdays at 10.30am.

Self-Directed Visits

Teachers, should you wish to bring a school group to the Museum on a self-directed visit, we recommend that you give advance notice of your visit and contact the Bookings Office via email.

New Activity Sheet - Medieval Ireland Activity Sheet  (1.52 MB, Adobe PDF) This sheet is created so that it can be used onsite at the Museum to explore the Medieval Ireland exhibition. Please note, this sheet will also ask the students to use some prior knoweldge that they would have gained in the classroom about the feudal system, the languages spoken in Ireland by the Irish and by the Anglo-Normans, . 

If you are leading a self directed visit of the Museum, we recommend before you bring your class in, that you come to the Museum and explore the exhibition. There are some hands-on activities in this exhibition where students can learn more about Medieval tiles, wooden mether drinking cups and which town in Ireland was founded when. If you can't visit in advance the exhibition section of the website has information online on the Medieval Ireland exhibition.

In The Classroom

Suggested follow up activities:

  • Plan a Medieval Feast Project. Ask students to plan the menu, decribe the clothes worn and the location of a Medieval feast, choosing between Gaelic and Anglo-Norman, townspeople and country people.
  • Draw a map of Medieval town naming the types of crafts people and shops which would have been there and describing people's past times.
  • Check and see if your town existed in Medieval times and what was in the town at that time.

Useful link: Archaeology in the Classroom


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