flowing waters of the Boyne with Newgrange on the horizon.
site A, which aligns with Newgrange for Winter Solstice.
location of the three major sites of Newgrange, Dowth and Knowth
close to the river Boyne suggests a unique closeness, an interaction,
with the natural landscape which prevailed in ancient times.
Boyne was the river where the famous 'Salmon of Knowledge' once
lived. The valley is still known today as the 'Valley of the Kings',
and a link with the great pyramids, which were also great astronomical
temples, and the Nile river, is brought to mind.
believe the river was seen as an earthly equivalent of the Milky
Way in ancient times, a theory supported by the ancient Irish
phrase for the Milky Way - Bóthar, (or Bealach) na Bó Finne, which
means 'The Way (or Road) of the White Cow.' *See Note.
ancient goddess Bóann, or Bóinn, gave her name to the river. Her
name means literally 'white cow' or 'illuminated cow'. This apparent
sky-ground symbolism seems plausible in light of the fact that
the builders of these sites were master astronomers.
'seven cows' of the Dowth
creation myth may have represented stars of the night sky,
specifically the Pleiades.