Kildare Abbey

Artist(s) : Luttrell Wynne (Draughtsman)

View of Kildare round tower and St Brigid’s Cathedral. To the left, the round tower with battlemented top, several windows and an elevated doorway surmounted by the remnants of a gable. Suggestion of buildings behind it. In the centre and to the right, the cathedral in a ruinous state, showing six-bay nave, transept and battlemented square tower. In the foreground, several tombstones. Roadway, trees and bushes.

Brian Lalor, The Irish Round Tower (Cork: The Collins Press, 1999).
Archaeological Survey of Ireland, at, record no. KD022-029020-. Accessed 23.4.2018.
National Inventory of Architectural Heritage, at, reg. no. 11817007. Accessed 24.4.2018.

Image Details

Genre Landscape
Technique Wash drawings
Subject(s) Antiquities and archaeological sites, Architecture
Geographical Location
  • Kildare - Town or city
  • Kildare - County
  • Leinster - Province
  • St Brigid's Cathedral, Kildare - Named locality
Keywords(s) Buildings, Churches, Dance, Doors & Doorways, Round towers, Ruins, Tombs & sepulchral monuments, Towers, Trees
Colour Coloured
Dimensions 31.5 cm x 21.5 cm
Published / created 1774

Bibliographical Details

Travel Account Journal and sketchbook, Ireland (1774)
Print or manuscript Manuscript
Location of image in copy PD/435 [image 5]
Source copy Formerly in Cornwall Record Office. PD/470-473, PD/435
Rights Now in private collection. No reproduction authorized.

Related text from travel account

In our way to Kildare we passed by a very good house of Mr Carter’s at Kilcarney & from thence over the curragh of Kildare where the races are held – a fine down full of variety of ground. The accommodations at Kildare are pretty good. At this place are the ruins of an Old Abbey which are worth visiting particularly upon account of a remarkable high round *Tower consisting of eight stories, adjoining to it.
*Round towers of this sort are found at Abernethy and Breekin [Brechin] in Scotland. This sort of tower is called a needle tower. Various are the accounts given of the intent for which they were erected. Mr. D. Barrington supposes them to have been intended as places of pennance. – others suppose them to have been designed as Landmarks. – some again for watch towers. The first opinion is more probable. [Unpaginated]
Kildare Abbey