Luggelaw, County Wicklow

From Newtown Mount Kennedy we diverge, in a westerly direction, to the village of Roundwood. The immediate neighbourhood of Roundwood is not particularly interesting, it is chiefly noted as a halting-place for visitors to Glendalough and Luggelaw. Of the latter place we shall speak first. After ascending a gentle elevation two or three miles to the northward, the traveller comes suddenly upon the beautiful sheet of water called Luggelaw. It is encompassed on all sides by mountains, some of them of the wildest, and others of the richest and most pleasing character. In the outline of one of the precipitous rocks is distinctly traced a gigantic resemblance of a human face, looking gloomily on the lake below. The eyebrows, broad and dilating, are marked by moss and heath, and the prominent cheeks and deep-sunk eyes perfectly formed by the clefts in the rock. The mouth appears open, but when you remove to some distance it closes, but without producing any alteration in the features.

Luggelaw, County Wicklow

Luggelaw

Embosomed in a deep valley, which runs into the mountains at one end of the lake, stands a handsome mansion, belonging to the Latouches of Delgany, surrounded by rich meadows and luxuriant plantations. Higher up, the valley closes with a vast amphitheatre of rocks, down which pours a small but pretty waterfall, forming at the foot a little stream which, winding through the meadows, mingles with the still waters of the lake. Such is the picturesque spot which art, improving upon natural advantages, has formed in the midst of a wild country. We can imagine no more pleasurable surprise than a stranger would experience on being led to this sequestered spot, without any previous preparation for a scene of such matchless beauty. It would be strange if the wild charms of Luggelaw had remained uncelebrated in the minstrelsy of Ireland; the bards of former days have devoted to it more than one "sweet wreath of song," and Erin's modern and immortal lyrist has commemorated its beauties by the adaptation of probably the choicest of his poetic strains in the Irish Melodies to the delicious old air of "Luggelaw."


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