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Ordnance Survey Letters by John O'Donovan and Eugene Curry, 1839

Inis Cathaig Island (b)

                                                                                                                      4th November 1839.

Dear Sir,
Since I wrote last I have visited the celebrated Island of Inis Cathaigh, now barbarously called Scattery Island, lying in the Shannon about two miles from this Town; but on turning to the extracts I find that its history has not been collected. But it belongs to this County and all the historical references to it should be collected at once and sent us.

The Domliag of Inis Cathaigh affords a clear proof that the pointed doorways and lancet and shamrock-headed windows found in Irish Churches are not original, but on this subject I shall speak at full length when I come to treat of the island and its history. Has Mr. Petrie seen the Round Tower of this Island? It is built in a very rude style, and its doorway is as low as the present surface of the field on which it stands; but for many reasons I cannot at all incline my mind to believe that this is the original doorway. Has Mr. Petrie ever seen a Map of Scattery Island similar to the one given by Ware of Clonmacnoise and Lough Derg? Or does he believe that such a Map exists or could be obtained? There is no ancient inhabitant at present on the island and the ancient names of the Churches are forgotten. I do not know how this defect (void) can be remedied (filled up) unless some ancient Map can be obtained?