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A Survey of Monuments of Archaeological and Historical Interest in the Barony of Bunratty Lower, Co. Clare by William Gerrard Ryan

Part 5: Sites of later historical interest (post 1580 AD)
Chapter 46: Quinspool Bridge, Parteen


Location Nat. Grid Ref. R575596; ½” Sheet 17.

Townland : Quinspool South
Parish (R.C.) : Meelick - Parteen
Civil Parish : Saint Patrick’s (Part of)
6” O.S. Sheet number : 63, Co. Clare
Reference : 18.3 cm North; 25.6 cm West
1” O.S. Sheet number : 143 (Limerick)

Inscription on Quinspool Bridge, Parteen
Inscription on Quinspool Bridge, Parteen

To this day that area of land between Mayorstone, Limerick, and Parteen, Clare, is marshy and subjected to flooding in parts. This is the case in spite of the digging of drainage ditches and reclamation of some of the land.

In earlier centuries the problem was more serious. Though Parteen and Limerick City are quite close the presence of this marshy area, known as the Friar’s Bog or Monabraher, seriously hindered communication.

In the early seventeenth century the Limerick Corporation decided to try and do something about this hindrance to communication. At first a ferry boat was suggested but, according to tradition, when the Scottish operator demanded money in advance the Corporation refused to deal with him. It was then decided to construct a causeway, i.e. an elevated roadway above the possible highest point reached by the flooding nearby river Shannon.

Such a causeway was constructed during the 1630’s. It became necessary to have a bridge along this area to allow the waters of a minor north-south flowing stream to reach the river Shannon. On this stone bridge a plaque was inserted to commemorate the undertaking. This plaque, in Latin, (see above photograph) states that the work was undertaken during the mayoralty of one Pierce Creagh FitzAndrew and completed in 1635 A.D. Originally the raised letters were coloured black to facilitate reading.

This bridge is within a short distance of the corporation dump and a deal of vandalism has taken place in this area in recent years. Hopefully the interesting plaque will never be interfered with but should this happen the above photograph will record its features in 1979.


1866, page 152