Suspected Alignment / Alignments:  Equinox Sun-set
Site Type: Wedge Tomb
Irish Grid Ref: R7718202479
Location: Link to Bing Maps

Equinox Sun-set from the top of Labbacallee Wedge-tomb


This wedge tomb is described on as follows;

"In pasture, on top of low gently sloping knoll c. 450m S of Funshion River. One of the largest wedge tombs in the country, it was excavated in 1934 (Leask and Price 1936). Remains comprise long, subrectangular gallery, aligned WNW-ESE, divided into W main chamber (L 6.2m, Wth c. 1.7m) and small E end chamber (L c. 0.9m; Wth 1.2m); the whole is covered by three roofstones. Main chamber is 1.8m H at W and 1.2m at E end. Gallery walls are doubled and flanked on either side by massive outer-walling. Three buttress stones stand at E end of gallery. Line of low kerbstones to S of gallery, joining buttress stones at E end, encloses low remains of cairn; some remains of cairn found to N of gallery but no kerb located. West end of monument is very ruined and though original design is unclear, probable portico seems likely. On floor of end chamber were found headless skeleton of woman accompanied by burnt animal bones and bone pin; probable primary burial. Higher up were cremated human bones and some coarse pot sherds. Two inhumations, including three skulls, were found in main chamber with sherds of coarse pottery. Additional skull appeared to match female skeleton from end chamber. Evidence for other burials were found in portico area including probable cist containing inhumation and sherds of possible food vessel (11956). Three radiocarbon determinations indicate that burials could have taken place within shortest calibrated range of 2202-2138 BC (Brindley and Lanting 1991-92, 21). (de Valera and Ó Nualláin 1982, 2-4, no. 3; Ó Riordáin and Waddell 1993, 94)"

As mentioned above this is one of the largest wedge-tombs in the country (if not the largest). There is much folklore attached to it and it gives its name to the townland which when translated into English means Hags Bed. The on-site information board mentions the equinox sun-set alignment and some of the folklore attached to the tomb. The sun does shine into the tomb around the equinox but whether it is intentional or accidental is unclear. However you could argue that due to the monuments large size that this is more a proto-passage tomb than a wedge-tomb. Access wise it is located right beside the road and there is free access to it.

Links to photographs;
Picture of the sunlight within the chamber on by Derek Ryan Bawn

Links for further information;
Further information on Jim Dempseys site
More information from