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

Parish of Kilballyowen

  1. Situation and Name; Old Church; Burial ground; Teampull-an-naonmhar-naomh (Church of the Nine Saints) Old Church in Ross; Grave of the Nine Saints, south of Church; Kilbeaha and Kilcluither old burial grounds.

  2. Cape Lear or Loop Head (recté Leap Head); Situation; Always called in Irish Ceann Leime (Leap Head) or Leim-Chonchulainn (Cuchulann’s Leap); Tradition respecting do.; Tonn-Mhal (Wave of Mal); Quotation rel. to it, from an Irish poem addressed by John Hoare to Chas. Keane of Kildimo; Similar waves on coast of Ireland of which there are historical notices. Tonn-Cliodhua in Co Cork called after Cliodhua, daughter of Dearg-Duallach, the musician of Manannan Mac Lir who was drowned there; Tonn Rudhraidhe on northeast coast of Ireland, so called from Rudhraidhe, one of the Firbolgs who lost his life there; Tonn Tuaithe (now called Mac Swine’s gun) at Ballyshannon, so called from the district named Tuatha in that country, from which Mac Sweeny was surnamed Na-Thuath.

  3. Ancient fort about a mile within the point of Leap-Head; Caher-Crochan, built of stone on the North side; Cathir-Sall, also of stone; Ard Cathair-na-h–aon-mhna (foundation of a small stone cahir); Dun-Daithlionn – built of earth; Origin of the cahers and dun attempted to be explained by Michael Comyn in his romantic tale entitled Adventures of Furrolbh-Mac Starain and his three sons; Creach-Oilean near Liscanor; Aile-an-Triuir a cliff so called from which, as stated in the romance, the sons of Turrolbh threw themselves into the sea; Poll-na-Peiste (Hole of the Serpent) a cave at bottom of the cliff; why so called.

  4. Leap Head as given by Michael Brennan of County Roscommon, in an Irish poem written on the River Shannon in 1794 and by Theophilus O’Flanagan in a note to the Tale of Deirdre, published in Transactions of R. I. Academy in 1808; Bullann-na-Leime, the Little Island so called to which Cuchulan is said to have leaped from Leap Head; Remark of Michael Brennan on the derivation of the last name.

  5. Tobar-Cuain, holy well at which devotions are performed for the cure of sore eyes near the burial ground in Kiltrillig; St. Seanan’s Well in Kilclogher frequented by a few devotees; List of places in the Parish mentioned in Hardiman’s Irish Deeds; Dun-Sumayn (now Ciochan Sumain) old Castle (site of) which belonged to Torlogh Mac Mahon mentioned in list of castles preserved in MS. Lib. Trin. Col. Dub.


Chapter 35


Chapter 37