Old Kirk Braddan

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5/5

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Things to do

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On your own

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Date of travel

August, 2019

Not only does “Old Kirk Braddan”:https://www.silvertraveladvisor.com/travel-product/attraction/201132-old-kirk-braddan have a marvellous Georgian interior, it also houses one of the best displays of early Christian crosses found on the island. This includes complete crosses as well as fragments and two cross bases. The earliest dates from around 600AD but the majority date from the C9th or C10th.

One of the most simple is a stone slab with a simple raised cross carved on it. Another has a cross set in a circle.

The best and most famous is the lovely Braddan Wheel Cross dating from the C9th. The cross is covered with interlacing similar to the “Lonan Wheel Cross.”:https://www.silvertraveladvisor.com/travel-product/attraction/199237-lonan-wheel-cross

At the top is a depiction of Daniel in the lion’s den (although only Daniel’s head with large moustache is visible). This was a symbol of the resurrection, with the lion’s jaws representing the jaws of Hell.

The other wheel crosses are quite crude in comparison. The later crosses are more like those found in Ireland or Scotland and the design is typical of that used on war memorials around the Island. All have the typical interlooped Celtic designs.

Thorleif’s Cross is one of the later crosses and has Viking dragons carved on its shaft. The Runic inscription reads ‘Thorleif Hnakki erected this cross to the memory of Fiac his son, brother’s son to Hafr’. Fiac is a Celtic name and may be a first generation Manxman with Norse father and Celtic mother.

Only the shaft remains of Odd’s Cross and again this has intertwined dragons. There are other cross fragments including one with intertwined curves and Runes.

Also on display are two of the stone bases that would have held the crosses upright in their original positions.

There is more detail and pictures “here.”:http://wasleys.org.uk/eleanor/man/churchesandcrosses/crosses/cross_braddan/index.html

The crosses are displayed in the church. This is usually open 10-4. If it is locked there is a phone number to ring or there may be someone in the Parish Office in the new church who can unlock the church. It is definitely worth visiting.

The post code is IM4 4LB and the grid reference is SC 364 768.

ESW

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