I am heading to Wicklow tomorrow and I was reminded of a really interesting 19th century cross that I came across last year. The cross is located in a field close to the early medieval church site dedicated to St Kevin at Dunboyke Co Wicklow.
The cross is what is know as a murrain cross, it is cast iron and was placed here in the 19th century as a type of folk cure. The word murrain is a late Middle English word. It comes from the Old French word morine, which comes from the Latin mori ‘to die’. Murrain refers to infectious diseases that affected cattle or other animals. This little cross was placed here to protect animals against sickness and outbreaks of contagious disease.