Tuam, from the Irish meaning “mound or burial-place”, is the second-largest town in County Galway.
The record of human settlement in Tuam dates back to the Bronze Age, c.1500 B.C. when an area adjacent to Shop Street was used as a burial ground.
According to legend, thew town owes its origin to the broken chariot wheel of St. Jarlath, who took it as a sign to found his monastic settlement here in the 5th century.
Tuam was the probable capital of Ireland during the 12th century, when the High King Rory O’Connor was in residence.
During this period the O’Connors endowed Tuam with the processional Cross of Cong, which is now in the National Museum.
The High Cross of Tuam was erected in 1152 close to what is now the Market Square and High Street and is now incorporated into St Mary’s Cathedral.
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