Bronze Dagger Exclusive!

This Bronze dagger with handle made of yew was found in the bog of Aughrane on the estate of Denis H. Kelly of Castlekelly in the 1800s. It was presented to the Royal Irish Academy by Denis Henry Kelly, an academy member. It is described and catalogued by William R. Wilde M.D. M.R.I.A.

Wilde describes it in part as follows: “Fig. 350 presents us with a dagger blade of somewhat the same variety as the foregoing, but less decorated, and found fixed upon an ancient yew handle in the bog of Aughrane, near Athleague county of Galway. It is 8 1/2 inches long, of which the blade is 4 1/2, and was presented by Denis H. Kelly Esq.”

Article taken from A Descriptive Catalogue of the Antiquities of Animal And Bronze in the Museum Of The Royal Irish Academy 1861 (P. 58 & 59). By W. R. WILDE M.D., M.R.I.A.

Local knowledge of this dagger was seemingly forgotten until early 2022, when contact was made with the National Museum of Ireland Archeology and it was subsequently found to be contained in their archive. Following this special permissions had to be granted to view the artifact from the archives. On a visit to the Museum by Shane Coyle it was viewed for the first time since the 1800s by a local from the area in which it was originally found, and with the kind help of The National Museum of Ireland Archeology staff permission was granted for it to be photographed for this exclusive article on

This dagger is now in the archive of The National Museum of Ireland Archeology on Kildare Street, Dublin 2.

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All Images are reproduced with the kind permission of the National Museum Of Ireland, in whom the copyright vests.