De Profundis Stone | Ancient Ireland Tourism

De Profundis Stone

De Profundis Stone

Ancient Irish custom was to mark the entrance to the graveyard with a prominent marker such as a tree or stone.    In Mullingar, County Westmeath, we found the last remaining De Profundis Stone in Ireland as the others have long since been lost or moved aside.

The term "De Profundis" is commonly used to refer to Psalm 130, which is also known as the "De Profundis" in Catholicism. These stones are typically made of stone or concrete and are engraved with the words "De Profundis" or "From the Depths" in reference to Psalm 130, which is a prayer for the dead.

This particular stone marks the entrance to the Kilbride-Veston graveyard.  The funeral procession would pause here and the coffin would rest on the stone while Psalm 129 was recited.  Then, new pall bearers would carry the deceased into the cemetery and to the grave.

A somber place to visit but also a glimpse of the ancient past.  It was here than many paused for a last earthly rest before their final committal to the darkness of the earth.