Battle of Clontarf Festival 2014

Simply epic … long hair, blood-curdling battle cries, swords drawn and ready to strike, the sheer blood-lust in their eyes … and that was just the women! The Battle of Clontarf Festival this weekend in Dublin had it all. Mass combat, individual tests of strength, artisans as well as cowardly assassins. And glorious sunshine. As you can glimpse from this image gallery of pictures taken in St. Anne’s Park, where the 1,000th anniversary of the Battle of Clontarf (and death of Brian Boru) was celebrated in style.

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Charging the spectators were only the ferocious Vikings … the festival itself was free. Ad certainly an event not to be missed.

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Once in a lifetime event? Often an abused term, but the Battle of Clontarf Festival will seek its equal in many years to come. And not only grizzled veterans will find it hard to top it in their lifetime …

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But it was not all blood and guts – the finer (and more refined) aspects of the Viking Age were also in evidence, from games of chess to craftsmanship.

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The highlight being, however, the several battle re-enactments – done with panache and in true style. And leaving a host of warriors ready for Valhalla. Again and again …

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Did I enjoy it? If you have to ask, you weren’t there. And if you weren’t there, you missed a treat. Including the good food. That is … while there still was some to be had. Queues were long and some stalls had sold out in record time too.

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Now let us just hope that a similar event will come along sometime …

By the way, huge thanks to Magnum Events and Insight Consultants for facilitating the media (though the crowd thought otherwise at times … bit of a side-battle in the enclosure for media and handicapped visitors due to a “pitch invasion”) and, yes, thanks to all the re-enactors who were patiently answering questions …

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