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6 March 2004
Researchers uncover giant depiction of ancient warrior

Two researchers have claimed that a huge, human-like depiction present in the road system straddling Meath and Louth (Ireland) could be the world’s largest ground-based representation of the constellation of Orion. They say that there is "tantalising evidence" that the vast 'High Man' figure may have been set down in prehistory and a five-year project of research into ancient myths and stories has revealed a significant astronomical knowledge among the ancient Irish.
     Artist Mr. Richard Moore and journalist Mr. Anthony Murphy claim that the human-like depiction may explain why some mythical characters such as Cuchulainn, Amergin and Fionn Mac Cumhaill were described as giants.
     The area covered by the colossal warrior-like individual is called the Barony of Ferrard, which comes from 'Fear/Fir Ard', the 'High Man/Men', originally Fir Ard Cianachta. In ancient times this area was called Muirthemne, which was "the plain Cuchulainn called his own." The High Man is bounded by the River Boyne to the south and the River Dee to the north, measures 12 miles from head to toe, and is surrounded by and embedded with eminent ancient sites, including the world famous Bru na Boine passage mounds.
     Mr. Moore said it was virtually impossible to say how long these roads were initially laid down but they know that certain roads are unusually straight, some of them for miles, and the figure was present on maps as far back as 1778. He said that the figure was not a precise rendering of the constellation Orion but did have a similar form. "Whether by accident or design, this human-like figure exists in the landscape and, just as an artistic image alone, it is breathtaking. But there are numerous fragments of evidence which could support the idea that the 'High Man' is more than just a product of good fortune or coincidence," he added.

Source: The Meath Chronicle (3 March 2004)

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