Moone, Timolin and Ballitore are a cluster of villages on the N9 south of Kilcullen .
This Southern region of the county is rapidly growing as a visitor centre and offers excellent fishing on the River Griese.
Moone High Cross dates from the 7th century and is arguably Kildare's most important heritage item.
Moone is one of the oldest inhabited areas in Kildare, with evidence of settlement going back 6000 years. In the sixth century, St. Colmcille founded a monastery here. In the Martyrology of Donegal and the Book of Kismore the location is called "Maen Colum Cille" or property of Colmcille.
Moone was christianised by the Roman bishop, Palladius so when St. Patrick planned to visit the town from Glenealy the residents of Moone laid traps for him, considering him to be heretic. Patrick was warned however and he skirted the town. As he passed he blessed the woman who warned him, Brigitta and cursed Moone saying no more men born there would ever become King or bishop and there never has been a bishop from Moone….yet!!
Things To Do
Moone High Cross:
The Irish high crosses were originally brightly painted, as one expert has observed ‘giving a general effect like that of a manuscript illustration'. The crosses did not mark burial places but were intended as an embellishment or boundaries for a monastery, as a protection or as a visual aid to religious instruction.
Over 5 metres high, it has beautifully stylized and naive figures. The decoration of the cross of Moone, like that of other related crosses, follows the form of prayer popular at the time, combining thoughts of the Old Testament with events from the New testament. Thus on the north side of the cross, the temptation of St. Anthony in the desert is depicted with suitable frightening monsters, and with another hermit, Paul, being fed by a bird from heaven.
A simple crucifixion is shown above a panel filled with the geometric figures of the apostles while, on the south side, the Old Testament is represented by the children in the furnace, and the New by the Flight to Egypt and the miracle of the loaves and the fishes. Adam and Eve, the sacrifice of Isaac, and the lions' den and Daniel are on the east side. The shaft, beneath a figure of Christ crucified, is a series of square panels containing animals and ornaments. In all, this is perhaps the most outstanding ancient monument in the country, and it is in the care of the County Council.
The Moone High Cross Inn
This delightful 'olde world' Inn contains a lot of interesting old artifacts that visitors can stumble upon. Located just a mile from the High Cross, the Inn is surrounded by well maintained gardens with plenty of Jacob sheep roaming freely. Accommodation is also available in this truly charming and peaceful Inn.