Saint Patrick's Journey
Previous Page


Some Irish people became monks. They lived simple lives devoting all their time to serving God.

Many years ago, monks lived in small monasteries built of wood and thatch. There were no stone buildings in those days and round towers only came in later years. The monasteries had a church, a scriptorium which was a place for writing and a dining room known as a 'refectory'. The monks slept in simple huts shaped like beehives and called 'cells'.

The monasteries became centres of learning as well as producing wonderful arts and crafts. Some monks left Ireland to go abroad as missionaries and to found monasteries. You can still visit the sites of many important monasteries in Ireland today, including Devenish, Monasterboice and the ruins at Nendrum.


In order to see this content you need to have both Javascript enabled and Flash installed. Visit BBC Webwise for full instructions

Image bank
Next Page

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.