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CarrauntoohilMountainCorrán Tuathail A name in Irish (Ir. Corrán Tuathail [GE], 'Tuathal's sickle' [OSNB])County Highpoint of Kerry, in County Highpoint, Arderin, Vandeleur-Lynam, Irish Highest Hundred, Irish 900s Lists, Purple sandstone & siltstone Bedrock
Height:1038.6mOS 1:50k Mapsheet: 78Grid Reference: V80363 84421This summit has been logged as climbed by 1570 members. Recently by: Cathal-Kelly, KevinRoche, paulmcquaid, jcincork, cathalferris, Helenha, Oona, oldpragmatist, bigmac63, wild_brian, marchiggins, Dee68, Eirepur, wjnunan, GillSte I have climbed this summit: YES (You need to be a logged-in member to change this.)
Just as the summit of Ireland's highest mountain is often covered in mist, its name is shrouded in uncertainty. Unlike some lesser peaks, such as Mangerton or Croagh Patrick, it is not mentioned in any surviving early Irish texts. P.W. Joyce suggests that meaning of this name is 'inverted reaping hook' and that this sense can be appreciated from the middle of the Hag's Glen. He proposes that the reaping hook is inverted in the sense that it is convex rather than concave [Irish Names of Places, vol. i, p. 6]. The serrated ridges which run up the north face of Carrauntoohil are certainly amongst its most distinctive features and are therefore likely to have given name to the mountain. However, the image of a 'convex reaping-hook' is a very odd and complex one on which to base a place-name, and the use of tuathal to mean inverted, while found in dictionaries, seems to be without parallel in other Irish place-names. It seems more likely that the second element is simply the personal name 'Tuathal' as John O'Donovan believed. This forename was common in Medieval Ireland and is the basis of the surname Ó Tuathail (O'Toole). It also occurs in Lios Tuathail (Listowel, Co. Kerry) and Carraig Thuathail (Carrigtwohill, Co. Cork), which the Flanagans interpret in both cases as a personal name (Irish Place Names). Intriguigingly, one of the earliest accounts to mention Ireland's highest mountain, written by Isaac Weld in 1812, refers to it as 'Gheraun-tuel', which suggests that the first element was not corrán, but rather géarán, 'fang', which is found in the name of several other Kerry mountains. On the basis of this one reference, it is difficult to say whether this represents an earlier form of the name or whether it was a corruption. For further information on the name, see Paul Tempan, Some Notes on the Names of Six Kerry Mountains, JKAHS, ser. 2, vol. v (2005), 5-19.
Carrauntoohil is the highest mountain in Ireland. Carrauntoohil is the highest point in county Kerry. Trackback: http://mountainviews.ie/summit/1/