1904, Vol. VI (1), part 1
The following extract is taken from an article by H.
B. Harris, which recently appeared in “The Dublin Penny Journal”
“In the townland of Kilcurrish, within a few miles of Ennis, in
the Parish of Dysart O’Dea, is an ancient ruin, commonly known as
Kilcross, with which is connected a tradition that no headstone shall
ever be erected, and no inscription ever engraved, recording the names
of those interred there, because it is said that the family of the survivor
who should erect one or cause an inscription to be engraved would become
extinguished, and, not only the family, but the relations and connections
would also be wiped out for ever. It is said that the sounds of bells
and music are heard at certain times. The site of this ancient church
and graveyard is in a hollow, and so secluded as to be completely hidden
from those passing by on the main road. I had no idea myself that this
ruined church and graveyard existed at all, until I visited the place
on the occasion of a funeral of one who lived in the neighbourhood. I
cannot even find any record of it in any of the modern Histories that
I have access to. However, lately I heard from Mr. Ralph Cullinan and
Mr. C. J. Hassett, and others, of these traditions, which aroused my curiosity.
One thing is certain, there are no tombstones at Kilcross, and, consequently,
no inscriptions, which support the tradition so far. It is not owing to
the poverty of the families either who use this burial-ground for interments
that there are no memorials of the dead, because all who use Kilcross
graveyard as a place of interment could well afford erecting tombs and
recording the names of those interred there. I should like very much to
discover the origin of these traditions, and appeal to our Gaelic League
to devote some attention to this and other matters connected with the
county, and, if possible, establish an Antiquarian Society for the County
of Clare, like our neighbours in Galway and elsewhere, because there is
scarcely a spot that is not associated with some historic event that would
be interesting to the present as well as to the future generations to
know. The preservation of these ancient sites, and the histories and traditions
attached to each, should really receive almost as much attention as the
revival of the ancient Irish Language; and that the region in which Kilcross
is situated is one of the most interesting of the many historic spots
in Clare, is, I think, undisputed. Its being the scene of that great battle
which broke the Norman power in Ireland adds to its interest.”
1913, Vol. IX (1)
The Dysart O’Dea High Cross.
From Lord Walter FitzGerald.
A cast of this cross stands in the gallery of the Dublin
Science and Art Museum. It shows two inscriptions carved in blank spaces
on different faces of the base. One runs:—
THIS CROSS WAS NEWLY REPAIRED BY MICHAEL O
DEA SON OF CONNOR CRONE O DEA IN THE YEARE
A few of the letters in the inscription are conjoined.
The word CRONE means “the swarthy.” The O’Dea territory
was known as “Kinel Fearmaic,” which lay in the present Barony
The second inscription reads:—
RE-ERECTED BY FRANCIS HUTCHINSON SYN-
GE OF DYSART FOURTH SON OF THE LATE SI-
R EDWARD SYNGE BART AND MARY HELENA
HIS WIFE IN THE YEAR 1871.
Sir Edward Synge, 2nd Baronet, married Mary
Helena, eldest daughter of Robert Welsh, of the Irish Bar; he died in
1843; their fourth son, born in 1820, died on the 17th September,
1871: his three elder brothers each succeeded to the Baronetey.
The Patron Saint of Dysart O’Dea was St. Tola, alias Manawla,
who was venerated on the 30th of March.