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

Parish of Kilrush

  1. Situation; Name; Saints Mellan and Occobran formerly venerated at Cill Rois in Termon of Inis Cathaigh, according to Irish Calendar, but neither of them now remembered in the Parish; Old Church; Kill-Keevan, a burial place in Breaghva, in which there was anciently a little Church dedicated to Saint Caomhan of South Aran; Kilcarroll burial place, in which a Church shown on the Down Survey, anciently stood, dedicated to a Saint Cearbhall, but supposed to have been called after a layman; Holy well and pile of stones near do. also called after Saint Cearbhall (pronounced Carroll).

  2. Old Churches (a small Damliag and Oratory) in Moylough, dedicated to Saint Seanan; Description of the Damliag; Of the Oratory, now called Seipeal Bean Sheanain, i.e., the small Chapel of Saint Senanus, but not believed to be of the period of the Saint; Foundations of a house or small Church, north of west corner of the Damliag; Altoir Sheanáin (the Altar of Saint Senaun) a square pile of stones so called, about five perches east of the Damliag.

  3. Copy of the original Irish Deed of Mortgage relative to Moylough, between Torlogh Roe Mac Mahon and John Mac Gillinan, in the collection of Messrs. Hodges and Smith (unpublished).

  4. Translation of Deed; Places mentioned in Deed. Cloonderalaw (now Clonderalaw in Kilmurry Parish); Kill Tiland (now unknown) but mentioned in an Inquisition as situated in Barony of Clonderala; Bally-Mac-Droighnen (now Ballymacrinaun in Killimer Parish); Kilcarroll (now Kill-Carroll) in this Parish; Dun-na-gCorrog (now Doonnagurroge in Killimer Parish).

  5. Inis Cathaigh, now generally called Scattery Island; Situation; Eleven Churches said to have been originally on do.; Ruins now to be seen there; Round Tower called in Irish Clogas Inse Cathaigh, described; said traditionally to have been built by Saint Sennaun, the Patron of the Island; Tradition relative to this tower, and also to those of Inis Cloithrinn in Lough Ree, and Inis Cealtra in Lough Deargdheire, recited by Michael O’Brannon, in his poem on the River Shannon (Irish translated); Erroneous statement of Lynch (Gratianus Lucius) concerning the tradition among the Irish relative to Cloigtheachs or Round Towers; Quotation from an Irish legend about Saint Senan and a woman relative to the cap of Inis-Cathy Tower.

  6. Cathedral or Damliag, east of the tower described; Mitred head executed in stone, in top of window in east gable held in high estimation by the islanders as being the supposed representation of the face of their patron, Senán; Called a Parish Church in Inquisition of time of Elizabeth.

  7. Remarkable little oratory of great antiquity north of the Damliag; Ancient looking stone wall surrounding the three buildings; Plan showing their rel. position; Tobar Sheanain (Fons Senani) a large square well so called, west of the Clogans; Stone ornamented with a Cross near the well; Teampull Sheanain (Church of Saint Senan) a small Church so called about twenty perches north of the Tower; Is one of “two Chapels in ruins” mentioned in Inquisition of time of Elizabeth; Small building of thin slates west of the last named Church; Ard-na-n-Aingeal (Hill of the Angels) southwest of round tower, so called in Life of St. Senan.

  8. Teampull Cnuic na n-Aingeal, old Church on do.; Is one of “two Chapels in ruins” mentioned in Inquisition of time of Elizabeth; Legend about the selection of the spot for its site in Life of St. Senanus; Building joined to its southeast side; Teampull-na-marbh (Ecclesia Mortuorum) a large Church about sixty perches southeast of the Damliag, so called because it is the only one on the island in which people bury the dead; called the Abbey of St. Synan in Inquisition in time of Elizabeth.

  9. Castle (vaults of) north of do.; Notice of erection of the castle in the Inquisition – ib. Plan of the ruins on Scattery Island; Rinn Eanaigh, the southern point of the island so called, but not the place mentioned in Annals of IV. Masters ad. ann. 1564; Flag on west side of do. said to cover the body of the lady who desired to obtain admittance to the island for sepulture but who was repulsed by St. Seanan; Pointe-an-Mheill, the nearest point to Inisbeg, or Hog Island – and Pointe an Chroisin the northwest point; Carraig Dhonain, a rock in the channel between Scattery Island and Hog Island called after Donan, one of St. Senan’s Monks; Carraig a Draoi (rock) the remains of an island called Cair-Inis which is mentioned in Life of St. Senan; Extract rel. to Inis Cathaigh from Colgan’s AA. SS., appendix to Life of Senanus; Its Prelates, Abbots, etc.,; Was laid waste by Marcus, son of Harold, a Dane, in 972; Recovered in 975 by Brian, King of Munster (and afterwards King of Ireland) who on the occasion vanquished the forces of Imarius, the Norman, and of his sons Amlaus and Dubgenius; Was, with its Churches, laid waste by Gulielmus Hoelmil, an Englishman, anno 1179; Extracts rel. to it from Annals of IV. Masters; The Lady Honora, wife of O’Conor Kerry, buried on the island in 1583 and the Lady Margaret, wife of Mac Mahon, interred thereon in 1591.



Chapter 27


Chapter 29