Gallarus Oratory, Dingle Peninsula, County Kerry, Republic of Ireland

Built in the shape of an inverted ship during the 7th or 8th century, the structure now known as Gallarus Oratory is the best preserved early Christian church in Ireland. The building has weathered the centuries and inhospitable climate impressively well, due in part to its simple, sturdy design and dry-stone corbelling. It has only two openings: a door and, on the opposite side, a small window. Neither are now covered, although there is evidence that the doorway once was.

All photos by Renée DeVoe Mertz, May 27, 2013.

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