Beltany Stone Circle

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Beltany stone circle is found near Raphoe in Co. Donegal, on the summit of Tops Hill. It consists of 64 large stones, arranged in a circle with a diameter of over 44 metres, and there is also a separate standing stone outside the circle, and others in the centre. It is thought that there were originally about 80 stones in the circle. It was built in the Bronze Age, between 1400 and 800 BC and the name comes from the Celtic spring festival of Beltane, or Beltaine, related to fertility and ceremonies involving the lighting of fires and the sun god Bal. It is also suggested that some of the stones are arranged in a solar allignment.

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A gloomy enough day when I visited. I would like to be there at sunrise or sunset, or in misty conditions, to enhance its atmospheric qualities.

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