Irish Historic Towns Atlas Volume I
This volume brings together the first six towns of the ‘Irish Historic Towns Atlas’ series, previously published as individual fascicles. These towns - Kildare, Carrickfergus, Bandon, Kells, Mullingar and Athlone - illustrate characteristic periods of town formation in Ireland. Kildare and Kells, with their distinctive round towers, have their origins in Early Christian monastic sites, while Carrickfergus and Athlone, with their strategically-placed castles, are part of the extensive network of colonial towns built by the Anglo-Normans after their arrival in the late 12th century. Bandon is a good example of an early modern plantation town, built by English settlers in the 17th century. Mullingar is a typical market centre, where the manorial element remained important from the town's beginnings in the medieval period, through to its revival in early modern times. The core strength of the atlas project is presenting large-scale town plans as historical documents, showing the different modes of origin and subsequent growth-phases of Irish towns. The topographical history of these towns aims to reflect the complex cultural identity of Ireland.