Battle of Tara, Battles of Ireland, Viking Battles

The Battle of Tara

This battle was fought near the Hill of Tara in the year 980; it paved the way to taking back control of Dublin and freeing Irish slaves.

The opposing armies were on one side, Head of the Southern Uí Néill, Mael Sechnaill mac Domnaill and on the other was the Norse Army from Dublin who was in turn supported by the Hebrides from off the Scottish coast, led by Ragnall (half-brother of Sigtrygg), a son of Olaf Cuaran (Curren), King of York.  Mael Sechnaill’s army consisted of the men of Meath together with support from Ulster and Leinster.

This battle lasted three days and resulted in the Vikings suffering a deadly defeat at the hands of Mael Sechnaill mac Domnaill and the Ui Neill Clan and resulted in heavy casualties for the Vikings.  The army of Meath went onto siege the city of Dublin and forced it to surrender handing over control of the city to Mael Sechnaill. Olaf fled and later died in Iona off the coast of Scotland. Mael Sechnaill remained High King for another twenty-two years until the reign of Brian Boru thereafter.This battle was the most decisive defeat for the Vikings, as Olaf Cuaran was the last great leader of the Vikings in Ireland.  The Kingdom of Dublin never retained the Norse status it had once held by the great Viking leader.

This battle was a significant battle in that it ended the Viking attempt over domination of the Island of Ireland.