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

Parish of Clooney [Bunratty Upper] (a)

This Parish is situated in the Barony of Bunratty Upper, and is bounded on the north by the Parish of Inchacronan, on the south by that of Doora, on the east by Tulla and on the west by Kilraghtis.

This Parish is called by the aborigines, Paraiste Chluaine, which means simply the Parish of Cluain, a word of which the meaning has been so often already discovered that it is unnecessary to say one word about it here.

The old Church of Clooney is not one of much antiquity nor antiquarian interest. Its walls are in good preservation and it measures forty five feet six inches in length and twenty in breadth. The south wall contains a pointed doorway placed at the distance of four feet from the west gable. It is constructed of cut lime stone and measures on the inside eight feet in height and in breadth four feet four inches, and on the outside seven feet in height and three feet four and a half inches in breadth. The same wall contains a round headed window placed at the height of five feet from the present level of the ground on the outside, and measuring on the inside eight feet in height and three feet eleven inches in width and on the outside five feet nine inches in height and five and a half inches in breadth.

The east gable contains a large modern window, measuring on the outside nine feet in height and four feet in width but it is not worth particular description.

The north wall contains a round headed window built of rude stones and not worth attention. The side walls are about eighteen feet high and three feet thick.

At the distance of a quarter of a mile to the north of this Church is a Holy Well dedicated to St. Patrick, which is much frequented by pilgrims, but no particular day of the year is kept holy to celebrate the Saint’s memory at it, but it is visited whenever the pilgrim feels inclined to say his prayers or perform his turas at it. Ricin is, according to tradition, the original Patron of this Parish.

About two hundred yards to the north of the Church are the ruins of the Castle of Cluaine, which is mentioned in the College List of Castles of Thomond as belonging to Donogh O’Grady and in the Irish List by William O’Lionain as built by Donogh, the son of Donnell O’Grady, who is probably the same Donogh mentioned in the College List. Twenty feet of the walls of this Castle remain but all its features are destroyed.

The site of a Castle is also shewn in the Townland of Toonagh but no part of the walls are visible.