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    Above the Shannon gorge, overlooking a beautiful mass of mountains, the southern arm of Lough Derg, and the river and Killaloe with its weirs, rises the great brown and purple bluff of Craglea. Above the low earthworks and mound of stones that mark the ninth-century fort of Prince Lachtna ascends a rough lane. Further up on the east flank a little well, Tobereevul, gushes out from under a low rock amid the ferns, and on the west side, - up a lonely valley, a long-forgotten battlefield, "Crag Liath where shields were cleft", in one of Brian Boru's earlier combats with the Norsemen, - rises a high crag called Craganeevul. The names of both well and crag commemorate the tutelary spirit of the House of Cass, Aibhill or, more correctly, Aibhinn, "the lovely one", once, it may be, the goddess of the House.

    Thos. J. Westropp, 1910

    Detail from the Rand McNally map of Ireland, 1897.
    Above: detail from the Rand McNally map of Ireland, 1897.
    Map © Cartography Associates, from the Rumsey Collection.

    Left: detail from satellite photo (click for larger version).

    Charon (MIT Project) 1989, James Coleman ©