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The History and Topography of the County of Clare by James Frost

Part I. Topography of Thomond Chapter 2. Ui Ainmire

Killeely Parish—(part of)

It is impossible with perfect certainty to discover in the Irish Martyrologies who was the patron saint of this parish. The virgin saint Faoile, of Atheliath Meadraidhe, in the county of Galway, is probably the one. In that part of it which is included in the Liberties of the city of Limerick there is a graveyard locally called Killeely churchyard, but without any vestige whatever of the church, if such ever existed. [7] That portion of the parish which is situate in the county of Clare is the only part with which we are concerned in this work. In that there are found the graveyard of Moneen-na-gliggin (the little bog of the sculls), very much used as a burial-place, and the ruined church of Cratloe Moyle, which seems never to have been employed as a place of sepulture, but to have served as an oratory to the adjoining castle. Of castles there are three in the parish of Killeely, namely, that of Cratloe Moyle, at present in a good state of preservation, the property in 1580, of Shane MacNamara; that of Cratloe Keel, which belonged at the same period to Donald MacNamara, and which continues to be inhabited up to the present time; and the castle at Cratloe-more, wholly demolished some years ago to supply building materials. The last-named was in 1580 in the possession of Donald MacTiege MacNamara. At a little distance from the castle of Cratloe Moyle is a holy well, dedicated to St. John the Baptist. On the day of his anniversary crowds of people assemble to make what is called the rounds of the well. Many persons have found the water efficacious for the cure of sore eyes and other ailments. In the lawn of Cratloe house there stood, about thirty years ago, a ruin called the Friary, but to what order of monks it belonged is unknown. It was removed by the late Augustus Stafford O’Brien, M.P., because it interfered with the view from his windows.