An American citizen has collapsed and died during a pilgrimage to Croagh Patrick in County Mayo.

Police have yet to reveal the identity of the man in his 40s who died as he began climbing the mountain.

Reports say the man became ill at the first statue on the pilgrim mountain as he started his ascent on Tuesday.

The man was with his wife and a number of visitors from the Mid West region when he collapsed.

The Irish Times reports that first aid was administered to the victim but he failed to respond to efforts to resuscitate him.

A local priest administered the Last Rites before the remains were brought by ambulance to Mayo General Hospital in Castlebar for a post-mortem. 

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Pilgrims climbing Croagh Patrick, MayoGoogle Images