Old Mellifont Abbey - 12th century, County Louth, Ireland

Mellifont Abbey resides on the banks of the River Mattock and was the first Cistercian monastery to be built in Ireland, founded in 1142 by St Malachy of Armagh. 

The Abbey became the model for other Cistercian abbeys built in Ireland, with its formal style of architecture imported from the abbeys of the same order in France, its most unusual feature is the octagonal Lavabo (where the monks washed their hands before eating). Little of the original Abbey remains, save the lavabo, some Romanesque arches and a 14th-century chapter house. 

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