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Life of St Senan, Bishop, Patron Saint of West Clare

Excerpts from various annals and manuscripts relating to Iniscathaigh

Colgan, careful and assiduous worker, not satisfied with transcribing and collating various MSS relating to our saint's life, adds an appendix of six chapters. In the fourth chapter, entitled ‘De Iniscathaigh,’ he recounts some of the names of prelates and abbots who once resided there. He states that he found very little, because the documents relating to them are so few.

In the Calendar of Saints:-
540: St. Senan, bishop and abbot of Iniscathaigh lived at this time.
580: St. Odran, bishop and disciple, and immediate successor of St. Senan, lived about this year.

In the ‘Annals of the Four Masters’ are found the following:
792: Died Olcobar, the son of Flan, the Archennachus (Ethnarch) of Iniscathaigh.
861: Died, Aidan, bishop of Iniscathaigh.
940: Flathbert, Abbot of Iniscathaigh, and later King of Munster, (after Cormac who died 903) died in the 37th year of his reign.
972: The Island and church of Iniscathaigh devastated by Marcus, son of Harold, the Dane.
975: The island of Iniscathaigh was re-taken by Brian, king of Munster, having conquered the forces of Imar, the Dane and his sons, Amlaimh and Dubhgenny.
994: Colla, Abbot and Master of Inisncathaigh, died.
1050: Ui Schula, ethnarch of Iniscathaigh, died.
1031: O'Burgus, coarb of Iniscathaigh, died.
1179: Iniscathaigh and its churches devastated by William Hoelmil, an Englishman.
1188: Aidus O'Beachain, bishop of Iniscathaigh, died.

Note: Aodh (Hugh Behan) who died in 1188 was the last bishop of Iniscathaigh.


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