Ta mo hall – This is my hall.
The National monument, known as the Grianán of Aileach, has become over the last few years, more and more, a case of mistaken identity on the part of George Petrie, who in 1834 determined, as part of the Ordnance Survey, that the newly found ruin on Greenan Hill must be that of the palace of Aileach. Ever since the monument has been known and celebrated as exactly that. But recent research has come to the conclusion that the original palace stood some miles north-eastwards in todays townland of Elaghmore and only moved to Greenan Hill around 800 AD. But no traces of buildings, required to furnish a royal site, have ever been found inside or outside the monument. The mistake perhaps occurred, as a poem was discovered on an old manuscript, claiming to have been written in 942 AD and calling for the first time the palace of Aileach the Grianán of Aileach. What was unknown in 1834, was the true date of the writing of this poem – 200 years later in the 1150’s. By this time the palace of Aileach had already been destroyed, fifty years earlier, in 1101.
Doubtless, whatever the nature of this monument used to be, it is in its own right royal and a seat of power. But perhaps not necessarily of the man-made power, it is usually attributed with.