The Iveragh Peninsula, often referred to as the 'Ring of Kerry', is one of Ireland's most dramatic and beautiful landscapes. This cultural atlas, comprising over fifty individual chapters and case studies, provides the reader with a broad range of perspectives on the peninsula and the human interactions with it since prehistoric times to the present day. Although not a conventional atlas, it contains many historic and newly commissioned maps. It also combines many different approaches towards understanding the distinctive character - both physical and human - of this unique landscape.The opening chapters explore the physical and environmental setting of the peninsula. Subsequent chapters deal with its development over the millennia and the influences that have shaped it. All aspects of Iveragh's past and present are considered, using the evidence of disciplines such as archaeology, art-history, cartography, folklore, geography, geology, history, mythology and zoology. The range of topics that arise from this approach is tremendously wide, and occasionally surprising.Given its status as a peninsula projecting into the Atlantic, the history and culture of the Iveragh Peninsula have been moulded by external influences as well as by regional and national ones.
Its story is multi-layered, involving the imprint of mythological as well as historic settlers and invaders. The peninsula has witnessed significant periods of transition, perhaps none more so than in the present era. This book seeks to deepen and illuminate our understanding of its landscape, history and heritage.