Great Sugar Loaf 501m mountain, Dublin/Wicklow Wicklow Mountains Ireland at MountainViews.ie
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Great Sugar LoafMountainÓ Cualann A name in Irish Ir. Ó Cualann [OSI], prob. 'youth of Cualu/Cualainn’ [PDT]WicklowCounty in Leinster Province, in Arderin List, Quartzite Bedrock
Height:501mOS 1:50k Mapsheet: 56Grid Reference: O23776 13088 Place visited by 888 members. Recently by: GerryCarroll, holmpatrick, morgan_os, SenanFoley, RockyCaver, rferrie, declantb, therealcrow, CianDavis, mazz1965, Hallamshire, radar, deemango, Q35on, brendanjrehill I have visited this place: NO (You need to be a logged-in member to change this.)
Boasting one of the best-known mountain profiles in Ireland, this peak can be seen from as far north as the Mourne Mountains, standing bold of the main Wicklow massif. According to the Yellow Book of Lecan (compiled in 1391), Ae Chualand was the stone upon which the head of Cualu Cetach was placed on Sliabh Chualand in Leinster, after he had been slain by Crimthand. In his pioneering article on the place-names of North Wicklow and South Dublin mentioned in the tale Togail Bruidne Da Derga (JRSAI lxv, 1935), Eoin Mac Néill had some difficulty with the name Óe Cualann, as it was written there, both in terms of the interpretation and location. He suggested the meaning 'sheep or ewes of Cualu' (taking óe as plural), due to some imagined resemblance, and identified it with Two Rock Mountain and Three Rock Mountain, an identification which has not won general acceptance. However, although the meaning ‘sheep’ is known for this word in Old Irish, usually written oí, there is good reason to believe that we have something different here. Ó is a rare place-name element, found only in a handful of names such as Gleann Ó (Glenoe, Co. Antrim [DUPN]) and in Mullach an Ó (East Mayo). In this name we are probably dealing with another example of personification of a mountain, or of rocks at its summit. Ó (earlier úa) is most familiar as a prefix in Irish surnames, where it means ‘grandson’ or more generally ‘descendant’. The nominative singular also occurs as aue or óe according to DIL, obviating any need to see this as a plural form. Significantly, there is a cognate Welsh word w, which is treated in dictionaries as a variant of gŵr, simply meaning ‘man’. The image originally evoked by the name Ó Cualann was therefore probably one of a young man, perhaps a noble warrior, keeping watch over the territory of Cualu and its inhabitants, the people called Cualainn. This is all the more convincing when one considers the close parallel offered by Stua Laighean (Mount Leinster), which means “prince/warrior of Leinster / the Lagin. For the English name Sugarloaf, see Sugarloaf Hill in the Knockmealdowns.
Great Sugar Loaf is the 566th highest place in Ireland. Linkback: https://mountainviews.ie/summit/455/