Giant’s Stone finally unveiled

Last Sunday was a very special day in the history of Crosshaven, as the 'Giant's Stone' was finally unveiled. The stone was found during excavations recently, having been missing for many years, and it now stands, pride of place, in the centre of the village.

Local historian Diarmuid O Murchadha performed the unveiling along with Eddie Cogan of Crosshaven in front of a large gathering of local residents on a cold winter’s evening, prior to the official switching-on of this year’s Christmas lights.

Speaking at the unveiling of the massive boulder, which has been placed on a granite plinth which was designed by Carrigaline-based artist Peadar Drinan, the former principal of Crosshaven Boys’ National School told a couple of versions of the story of the origin of the ‘Giant’s Stone’ which has become part and parcel of the folklore of Crosshaven down the years.

One story, by Robert Day back in 1892, told of a giant called ‘Mahain’ who threw two stones from Monkstown - one landing in Ringaskiddy and the other in Crosshaven. The other more common story told of a giant called ‘Binne’, who lived in Currabinny and who cast the stone into Crosshaven many years ago, where it came to rest on the foreshore near the present site of Crosshaven House.

There is a ‘Giant's Grave’ in Currabinny - a large pre-historic grave - which was excavated by archaeologist Sean P. O’Riordan back in 1932. He found cremated human remains on the site dating back to the bronze age times of about 4,000 years ago, further fuelling the giant’s story locally!
“However, despite the magic of local folklore, the stone was probably deposited in Crosshaven during the ice age 20,000 years ago and I am hoping that the stone would be part of the history and folklore of the village for the next 20,000 years!”, Mr. O Murchadha added.

The ‘Giant's Stone’ disappeared when the ‘slob’ in the centre of Crosshaven was filled in, back in the 1960s, and only came to light last year with the redevelopment of the centre of the village and now stands in pride of place in the new village car park.

Diarmuid O Murchadha recalled the fun youngsters had many years ago playing around the ‘Giant’s Stone’, complete with its own set of giant fingerprints embedded into the stone, and was delighted that a piece of local folklore, which had been lost for the past 40 years, was now attracting as much interest and attention as it did generations ago.

Grateful thanks was expressed to Sorensons who found the boulders, Michael Kavanagh of O’Flynn Construction, the West Cork LEADER Group, Cork County Council, and the Crosshaven Development Committee, headed by Maurice Collins, and a dedicated team of locals who collected the cost of erecting the plinth.

A special mention was given to Peadar Drinan who design the granite plinth where the boulder now rests, with an inscription around the base which reads: ‘This is the boulder which, according to local tradition, was hurled by a giant from the hill of Currabinny, to land on Crosshaven’s foreshore nearby.” Special mention was also made of Eddie Cogan for his perseverance and dedication to the project.

Courtesy of Howard Crowdy and the Southern Star