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Here is a brief video of the site.
Tullahogue Fort, (also spelt Tullyhogue) meaning “hill of youth” or “mound of the young warriors” is a wonderful ancient and sacred site on the outskirts of Cookstown, County Tyrone. It is the ceremonial site where chieftains of the O’Neill dynasty of Tyrone were inaugurated for six hundred years. It has long been a place of significance well before then.
This is one of my favourite sites in Ireland. The sense of haunting, ancient, atmosphere is amazing. At times I feel the ceremonial atmosphere is about the place, other times I go there, I feel a fire energy, and at another time, a place of reconciliation. It is a very powerful and energetic place, it seems to uplift energies every time I go, or take other people there. It’s a place where everyone takes away a unique insight, not just to the site and its place in the lives of our past connections, but when the quiet descends, it seems to connect to your very soul.
Tullahogue was the residence place of the O’Hagans, (my mothers side of the family). Ó hÁgáin, translated as “Little Fire From The Sun”, believed to be from Aodh, (the Sun God), and Og (Young). Until the destruction of Gaelic order in the 17th Century the O’Hagans were one of the most powerful and influential families in Ulster. They were brehons (judges) and inaugurators here. The O’Hagans descended from King Niall of the Nine Hostages, the High King of Ireland from 370 to 406AD, who in turn descends from Conn, the King of Tara in the 2nd Century.
The date of the construction of Tullahogue fort is not known, however it is believed to have held great significance from early times, possessing a ritual and ceremonial importance long before the O’Neill’s became associated with the site. It feels that this place was important as an energy site to the Celts. It is not a traditional defensive fort, and so more likely was constructed for ritual and ceremonial purposes.
In the later medieval period, Tullahogue became a place of regal importance as the inauguration site of the O’Neill dynasty, where they were crowned as Kings of Ulster from the 11th Century.The O’Neills are descendants of the Ui Neill, themselves the descendants of Niall of the Nine Hostages, living about 400AD. For centuries the O’Neills were Kings of all-Ireland, Kings of Ulster and Princes of Tyrone. Hugh O’Neill’s inauguration in 1593 was the last such event here, prior to this Gaelic way of life being brought to an end by Queen Elizabeth I. The inaugurations took place on a large stone chair, which stood on a hillside nearby, known as the Leac na Rí (the flagstone of the kings). This was destroyed in 1602 by Lord Deputy Mountjoy, in accordance with the Elizabethan policy of destroying all Irish symbols of clan allegiance.
This is a place well worth spending time at, in peace and reflection. Sit on the banks, lean on a tree, listen to the breeze whispering through the leaves, listen to the birdsong above. Allow your minds eye to travel back through time, peeling away the layers as you connect to the past here, and you connect to your own soul. Just relax, observe your feelings & soak it up. Go now!