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Irish Round Towers

27 26 survIval and some more destruction Today some seventythree round towers still exist, while several more have disappeared relatively recently. The Protestant bishop of Raphoe knocked his down in the 1630s, to make room for his palace, and Killeshins was demolished in three days work in 1703. In the early 1800s two local landowners were restoring a ruined church at Downpatrick below left as the Anglican cathedral but disagreed violently about its round tower, which stood beside St. Patricks supposed grave. Unfortunately the one who admired the tower was called away on business, whereupon the other demolished it, and used the stones for rebuilding the church. Other towers disappeared less dramatically. The fallen drum at Maghera was carted off as building material, while a tower that appears in early views of Dublin, the Old Tower of Michael le Pole below right, succumbed to the towns expansion. By the nineteenth century a red brick schoolhouse stood on the spot, which has now given way to the level tarmac of a car park.
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