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The Neale (Irish: An Éill, meaning “the strip of land”), is a quiet roadside village sitting on top of a limestone plateau and famous for its many monuments

Many monuments are present at The Neale.

The Pyramid of The Neale is an example of a folly. A folly is a building that serves no purpose and there are five main types: Temples, Pillars, Grottos, and Small Castles. This step pyramid was built around 1760 and is a 30-foot (9 metres) structure rising from a series of steps from the base nearly 40 feet wide. According to the present John Kilmaine in Alcester, England: “It is said the pyramid is constructed on the old tumulus. The building of the pyramid is attributed to Sir John Browne the 7th Baronet and 1st Baron of Kilmaine, in memory of his brother, Sir George Browne. The structure, which at one time was crowned by a lead figure of Apollo, was designed by the Earl of Charlemont for his brother in law, Sir John Browne. There are a few varying stories of the building of the Pyramid. One such story is that Lord Kilmaine was anxious to find a way of relieving the extreme poverty of his tenants in the post famine years, so he employed men to pick up the stones around the estate. He had those stones piled up and built into a pyramid. This provided the poor people with a little additional income. In the later years a wind-vane adorned the top of the pyramid, so the landlord could indulge in his passion for meteorology and the recording of weather systems over a period of 30 years. The Office of Public Works refurbished the Pyramid in 1990.

Temple Monument: It was in the 18th century that the Penal Laws were enforced and the great houses and estates of the landlords were built. The Neale estate was approximately 400 acres, surrounded by a high double wall. Inside the wall, the landlord built a number of unusual monuments or follies. The Temple is an unfinished temple of carved stone. It was the last folly to be built in 1865 by John Browne, Baron of Kilmaine in honour of his first title Lord Mount Temple. It is hexagonal and has 6 plain Doric columns, at one time it had a timber roof. The base of the Temple, with the arches, dates from an earlier time and it is probable that the columns were replaced on top of the old structure to give it elevation. The Temple was used by the ladies of the Big House for family meetings, knitting and relaxing.

Gods Of The Neale: About 200 yards east of The Neale village, inside the old demesne wall and close to the ruins of Lord Kilmaine’s house, is a stone monument known as The Gods of The Neale. A collection of stone slabs with carvings of three mythical figures, a griffin, a unicorn and an angel is enshrined in a stone structure. The inscription refers to the sculptured figures as Deithe Feile, Diana Ffeale, and The Gods of The Neale, from which The Neale gets its name.

The Long Stone or The Lia Lugha (Stone of Lu) is said to mark the burial place of Lugh Lamhfhada (Lu of the Long Hand) who was slain in the Battle of Moyturna. Lu was the son of Nuadha, King of the Tuatha De Danann. The stone is at the fork of the roads from Cross and from Cong, south of the Neale village. It is known locally as the Long Stone

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