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Ardagh 150th Anniversary Lecture Series

To celebrate the 150th anniversary of the discovery of the Ardagh Chalice and hoard the Museum of Archaeology is holding a special series of lunchtime talks about the discovery, art, techniques of the chalice and the history of the age in which it was made.


The Ardagh Hoard - Discovery, Controversy and Aftermath
Mr Raghnall O'Floinn former Director of the National Museum of Ireland

Wednesday 3rd October                        1pm-1:45pm

This lecture will outline a newly-discovered account of the finding of the Ardagh hoard, as well as the subsequent controversy surrounding the circumstances of its discovery, the treatment of the finders and its final acquisition by the Royal Irish Academy.


Interpreting the Art of the Ardagh Chalice
Dr Niamh Whitfield, independent scholar specialised in early Medieval metalworking  

Wednesday 10th October                      1pm-1:45pm

The Ardagh chalice, adorned with a tremendous variety of patterns, is one of the finest pieces of metalwork ever produced in Ireland. It is commonly assumed that these patterns are merely decorative, but this talk will show that they are in fact rich in Christian symbolism. 


Kings, clerics and makers: the world of the Ardagh Chalice
Dr. Edel Bhreathnach, CEO of the Discovery Programme

Wednesday 17th October                      1pm-1:45pm

What kind of society created the Ardagh Chalice? For whom was it made and who had sight of it? Why did it end up being placed with other objects in the ground? This talk looks at the patrons and creators behind the commissioning and crafting of such an object and the circumstances that would have led to its being hidden in a ringfort in west Limerick.


Seeing Beyond the Sparkle: a detailed examination of early medieval Irish 'artefacts of production'.
Dr. Brendan O’Neil, Assistant Professor at the UCD School of Archaeology  

Wednesday 24th October                      1pm-1:45pm

As part of the Ardagh 150 Programme, the National Museum and UCD Centre for Experimental Archaeology have begun a research project examining how early medieval metals were used to make beautiful objects. By using a range of different investigative techniques a selection of artefacts from the Museum have been analysed, recreated and used for the first time in over 1,000 years. This talk will provide an initial overview of this research, what it hopes to achieve and present some if its initial results.

Admission free. Places are limited, to book please phone 01-6486 332 or email educationarch@museum.ie. Located in the Kildare Room, Ground Floor. Fully wheelchair accessible.