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Parliamentary Gazetteer of Ireland 1845

Clare Abbey

A parish on the eastern border of the barony of Islands, Co. Clare, Munster. It contains the town of CLARE. Length, south-westward, 4 miles; breadth, from 1 to 2; area, 7,028 acres, 2 roods, 36 perches, of which 99 acres, 15 perches are lakes, 5 acres, 1 rood, 36 perches are tide-way in Ardsullas river, and 43 acres, 12 perches, are islands in the estuary of the Fergus. Pop., in 1831, 3,881; in 1841, 3,280. Houses 516. Pop. of the rural districts, in 1831, 2,860; in 1841, 2,401. Houses 368. The surface of the mainland is bisected southward by the Fergus; and consists, in the aggregate, of very good land,-part of which is alluvial, and part of limestone formation. Near the town is Carnelly, the handsome demesne of Mr. Stamer; and on the Fergus is Buncraggy, the old and neglected but beautifully situated seat of the noble family of Burton. The other mansions are Claremount, Island-magrath, Barntick, and Kilbreckanbeg. About a mile north of the town, almost midway to Ennis, and near the Fergus, stand the interesting ruins of Clare-Abbey, erected, in 1194, by Donald O’Brien, King of Munster. In 1543, this abbey, together with a moiety of the rectories of Kilchrist, Kilmoyle, Kilmacduan, Killurocragh, Ballinregdan, Ballylogheran, and Ballylegford, was granted by Henry VIII. to the Baron of Ibrickane; in 1620, it was granted in fee to Donough, Earl of Thomond; and in 1661, it was granted anew to Henry, Earl of Thomond. The interior of the parish is traversed by divergent roads from Clare toward respectively Ennis, Limerick, and Kildysert. This parish is a perpetual curacy and a separate benefice in the dio. of Killaloe. Glebe, 27 13s. 9d. Gross income, 120 0s. 11d.; nett, 111 5s. 6d. Patron, the diocesan. The tithes are compounded for 144 9s 2d., and are wholly impropriate; 33 of them belonging to the Earl of Egremont, 57 to Robert Kean, Esq., and the remainder purchased as an endowment for Kilmeedy parish. The church was built in 1812, by means of a gift of 738 9s. 2d. from the late Board of First Fruits. Sittings 150; attendance 120. The Roman Catholic chapel has an attendance of 300; and, in the Roman Catholic parochial arrangement, is united to the chapel of Kilnoe. In 1834, the Protestants amounted to 102, and the Roman Catholics to 4,069; and 3 daily schools-one of which was a Protestant free-school had on their books 72 boys and 52 girls.

The Parliamentary Gazetteer of Ireland, 1845
Courtesy of Clare Local Studies Project

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