[Hand of T. O'Conor:] Killoscobe, Ballymacward, Cloonkeen, and Monivea Phs., described.

Galway, Friday, (Septr.) 27th 1838


Killoscobe is a small parish lying between Moylough and Ballymacward Phs. in the Barony of Tiaquin. The Irish name of this parish (or it), is Cill ua Scuaba {or Scoba}, which is seemingly from a family name. Where does Mac Firbis locate Ua Scuaba or Scoba?

[In left-hand margin: Capt Stoth.] There are no remains of the church of Killoscobe, now observable in the (old) grave-yard of the parish. Near the church yard there was a well called Tobar Naoimhéid, at which Stations were heretofore performed on Good Friday annually. It is at present dried up, and at it stands a white thorn bush to the left of the road leading from Killoscobe village to Ballymacward. Is Naoimhed mentioned as a Saint?

A burying place for children lies in Kilfelligy townland, C1ll Feilige, where there are no remains of a Church. There are traces, however, which


sufficiently mark the site of one within it. Where is Cill Elge {or Fhelge} placed, which is spoken of in connection with Saint Gerald's establishment at Mayo? Let what is said respecting it be sent in order to identify it, if possible.



The name of this parish is pronounced in Irish, BaiLe 'ac Bháird, which signifies the Bally {town} of the Mac Ward, a name as a parochial one, certainly of no antiquity

What at all deserves notice in this parish, is that, a burying place lies in Killaghan, Cilleachán, from which the townland took its name. And Shanclogh, Sean Chloch, a burying place for still born children, lies, "west of the east boundary of Garrafine townland".



The local Irish name of this Parish is Cluain Caoin Cairill, that is, the delightful Cluain of Cairill, whose day 13nth of June is still (annually) kept, a holiday, and from whom a lough in the townland of Gortnalon, takes the denomination of Loch Cairill, that is, the Lough of S. Cairill.

A tract on the tribes, territories, and Customs of Hua Maine {Hymany} preserved in the Book of Leacan Fol: 92, a, enumerates among the principle [sic] Coarbs of O'Maine, the Coarb of Cluain Caín Cairill. The words of the passage, are

Seacht priomhchomharbadha O'Máine .i. Comharba Cluanfearta, agus Comharba Chilli Mian, agus Comharba Chilli Tullach; Comharba Cilli Comadan, agus Comharba Chamcha Brighdi, mar a mbaistear popall O'Máine; agus Comharba Chluana Tuaiscirt na Sinda, darab dúal righadh sil Ceallaigh; agus Comharba Cluana Cáin Cairill.


The seven principle [sic] Coarbs of O'Mainé, are, the Coarb of Clonfert, and the Coarb of Killmian, and the Coarb of Killtullagh; the Coarb of Killicomedon, and the Coarb of Camaghbride, where the people of Hymany are baptized and the Coarb of Cloontooskert of the Shannon, who usually inaugurates the O'Kellys; and the Coarb of Cloonkeenkerrill.

There is a tradition in the Country that there was an abbey at Cloonkeen; the walls of a religious edifice in a state of ruin, as yet remain in Cloonkeen (old) Church yard; the windows to be seen on them, are considerably spacious, and (are in) of the pointed style.



The name of this parish is locally pronounced in Irish, Muine Mheadha, which according to the sound, as far as we know the meaning of the words, would signify the hill of Metheglin.

The first notice we have of this name, is as the name of a Castle, in the Annals of the Four Masters, who record at the year AD 1504, that,

Three Castles belonging to O'Kelly, viz. Garbhdhoire (now Garbally, see last letter written from Tuam), Muine-an Mheadha, and Gallach (see last letter also, in which Gallach is adverted to) were demolished by Mac William de Burgo viz Ulick the third. O'Kelly {Melaghlin} went to the Lord Chief Justice and Complained to him of the injury done to him.

A great army was mustered by the Lord Chief Justice {Garrett the son of Thomas, Earl of Kildare} being joined by the nobles of Leath-Chuinn, viz. O'Donnell {Hugh Roe} and his son, together withe the principal Chiefs of Kenel-Conaill, and a party of the Connacians, viz. {O'Conor Roe, Hugh, the son of Felim Fin}, and Mac Dermott Lord of Moylurg. All the Chiefs of Ulster,


except O'Neill, joined the expedition: viz. Art, son of Hugh O'Neill, Tanist of Tirone, Donall, the son of Magennis, Mac Mahon and O'Hanlon; also O'Kelly and O'Ferrall, commonly Called the Bishop, O'Conor Faly, the O'Kellys, and the sons of William de Burgo, and the forces almost of all Leath Chuinn in general. These numerous forces delayed not until they arrived in Clanrickard where Mac William de Burgo mustered a great army to give them battle viz. Torlogh, the son of Teige O'Brien, Lord of Thomond and his brothers with all their forces, the Siol Aodha {i.e. the Macnamaras} and Mulrony O'Carroll Lord of Ely, with all his Clans and chieftains joined by the nobles of Ormond and Ara. On being assembled Mac William and O'Brien held a Council of war, in which they with the assent of all their chiefs came to a spirited and brave re-


solution, that they would neither submit, nor give hostages to the enemy but would Come to a pitched battle at Cnoc-Tuagh (now Knockdoe lying eight miles north by east from Galway); and a fierce engagement accordingly took place between them there, such as had not been known of latter times.

Far from the field of action, were heard the violent onset of the Chiefs, the vehement efforts of the Champions, the desperate Charge of the Royal heroes, the tumult of the nobles, the clamour of the troops when thrown into Confusion, the shouts and exultations of the youths, the noise made by the brave men as they fell, and the routing of the inferior soldiery by the nobility. In short the battle ended with the defeat of Mac William, O'Brien and the chiefs of Leath-Mhogha, and a great slaughter of their forces in general. Among the slain,


was Morogh, the son of O'Brien of Ara, together with many others of the nobility.

A Countless number of the Lord Justice's forces, were also slain, though victory favoured their side; in fact, it would be impossible to enumerate, or describe all the slain, both horse and foot, in the engagement, for the plain in which they fought was impassable by reason of the several prodigious and uncommon bodies that lay slaughtered on it, such as broken spears, cloven shields, shattered swords, mangled and disfigured bodies, stretched out at full length, and beardless youths lying lifeless, scattered Confusedly on the plain (ground).

After having gained this signal victory, the Lord Chief Justice proposed to O'Donnell that they should march strait to Galway to which O'Donnell replied as follows: "A considerable number", said he, "of our forces have been slain, and overpowered


and more of them separated from us, wherefore, what I think most advisable, is that, we take our repose tonight at this place, and pitch a camp in token of victory; for our soldiers and attendants now scattered, then recognising our standards and Colors, will rally and join us". This was accordingly done, and on the following day the Lord Justice and O'Donnell marched to Galway, the Lord Chief Justice carrying with him as Captives the two sons and the daughter of Mac William. They remained for some time together in this town, cheerful and merry and well pleased with their late victory, and from thence they marched to Athenry which town surrendered to them whereupon O'Donell and the other Chiefs took their leave of the Lord Justice and departed to their respective places of abode.


The explanation that is given of the name Monivea locally, is quasi Mhóin a Bheitheach, the birchy bog (or marshy place), or bog abounding in birch; as the Country in that part was very productive of birch, with which the wood in Monivea demesne abounds at present; I could not learn where Monivea Castle stood, unless tradition be correct, which asserts that Frenche's Castle in Monivea demesne is the original Castle of Muine Mheadha, being kept in repair and now branching into several other apartments, which were at various periods since its building appended to it.

At the distance of three miles from Monivea to the South, in the demesne of Edmond Burke Esqr., (and) just at his residence which is called 'Tiaquin House', there is shown 'a butt' of the Castle that originally bore the name of Tiaquin Tigh a' Chuinne (Coinmhe) "house of the Coynie", which became afterwards a baronial designative.

The site of Newcastle, which gave name to a townland, is pointed out, near the new chapel


Newcastle, or Currabane, and close to a road that branches to Monivea from the Athenry and Ballinasloe road.

Cashlaun darach, Caislean Darach, which goes also by the name of the Castle of Ryehill {Cnoc a t-Seagail}, stands in ruins in this parish; and also the Castle of Kilclogher {Coill a Chlochair} is to be seen in ruins here, and in very bad preservation.

In this parish, there is a townland called Tigh Sacron, Tisaxon. On the lands of Tisaxon, in a part called Churchpark, we find the ruins of two edifices, the one of which is called Teampall Maol ([In pencil:] Templemweel) (i.e. old church), and the other Teampall a Bhaile ([In pencil:] Templeavally) = the Church of the bally or town.

One of the gables of Tamplemweel was entirely levelled with the ground. At the height of about 8 feet from the ground, on the gable that remains standing, are two lancet windows of cut stone, about 8 feet high and 1 foot broad (on the outside), which are perfectly circular at top.


And two windows of the same kind are seen on one of the side walls, at the height of 6 feet from the ground; and about 8 feet high and 8 inches broad (on the outside). One of these windows is battered at bottom.

The breadth inside the edifice at the gable just mentioned, is 12 yards, 11 yards (in length) of one of the side-walls, in and 14½ yards of the other remain; the original length of the building cannot be well ascertained; there is a very extensive grave yard attached to it ([In pencil:] Templemweel), which is the principle burying place in the parish. Near it, is a well called by some persons, Tobar a Coilim Bháin (Toberacollumbaun), and by others Tobar a Choilinn Bháin (Toberacullinbaun), the former of which would signify, the well of the white pigeon, and the latter,


the well of the white holly. This well was formerly frequented as a holy well, but I could not ascertain on what particular day of the year.

One of the gables of Tampleavalla was totally destroyed; on the gable standing (which is to a great extent covered with ivy), there is a pointed window about 6 feet high; there are two windows on one of the side-walls; the one (is) battered, the other made of ornamentedly cut stone is 4 feet high and 10 inches broad on outside, and pointed. About 18 yards in length of one side wall, and 22yds. of the other, remain.

It must be this establishment Archdall had in view, when he writes in his Monasticon, under the heading 'Templegaile or Teach Saxon' -

Situated two miles West of Athenry.


We are told that the ancient church of Tigh Sasson was burnt by lightning in the year 1177o.

A friary of small extent was founded here in the reign of Henry VII by one of the family of Burghp for franciscans of the third order, which friary and its appurtenances together with the Abbey of Mayo, was afterwards granted to the Burgesses and Commonalty of Athenry.q

o: Annal Lagenieep: War: Mon: and Harris's tab:q: Aud: General

Where does Colgan place Tighsaxon, which is mentioned where he speaks of Mayo of the Saxons, in the notes annexed to St. Gerald's Life?


A small burying place lies, it is said, in Laghtanora townland, Leacht an Óra (Onóra); and one in Knockatober townland Cnoc a'tobair, hill of the well.

Toberpatrick, Tobar Padraig, holy well, lies in Caherlissacuill townland, Cathair Lios a Choill.

Your obedient
T. O'Conor