Information about Derry

Information from O'Donovan's Field Name Books

Standard Name:
Irish Form of Name:
an oak wood
Civil Parish:
Other Forms of the Name with authority source (if provided) in italics:
Derry By. Surveyor's Sketch Map
Derry Co. Cess Collector
Derras Crillap[Unable to read.]
Derry Local
Derry Mearsman
Derry Meresman
Derry Revd. Michael Heraghty, P. P.
Derry Tithe Ledger
Proprietor Earl of Leitrim and Charlemont, Rosshil or Dublin. Agent Mr. James Fair, Fairhill in Ross Parish held under lease. Rent £37.02.6D per year. Soil mountain some rough and part heathy and mixed with some arable mountain and tillage and arable land of a very poor quality. Crops of oats middling. But potatoes very poor. There are 3 villages, Largaan, Ruona-dharree and Shraina-Luring. Skelsheghsteep, Shrana-Living.
In the South side of the parish. Bounded on the North by the townland of Cappanacreagh and [Unable to read.] by the parish Aughagower, Co. Mayo and parish Ross, Co. Galway. South by the parish of Ross and Lough Mask and on the East by townlands Derry, Park and Shanvallycanhill. In the Barony of Ross and County of Galway.

Information From Joyce's Place Names

Translation according to P. W. Joyce:
Derry; Irish doire, an oak grove, from dair, an oak. Sometimes it is applied to any grove, as in Derryoghill. It was anciently a neuter, of which traces still remain (p. 10) [reproduced below].
Neuter Gender and Neuter Eclipsis. In Old Irish there was a neuter gender, which has dropped out, for it does not appear in Middle or Modern Irish: we have now only two genders, masculine and feminine. An old Irish neuter noun caused an eclipsis, or what was equivalent to an eclipsis, in the word immediately following. For example, the plain of North Dublin is called Magh-Breagh in Modern Irish; but in Old Irish it is Mag-mBreg, where the B is eclipsed by m; for Mag (now Magh) is a neuter noun. Under the same influence, if the word following a neuter noun begins with a vowel, the letter n is prefixed to the vowel. But although the neuter gender has passed away, its effects are to be seen, even in modern anglicised Irish names, just as the foot-prints of prehistoric animals are now often found, after thousands of years, on the surface of hard rocks. Many of the old eclipsing letters inserted by the neuter nouns still remain and cause eclipsis in our present names. Take these two examples, one with consonantal neuter eclipsis, the other with n before a vowel. Dungrud is still the name of a place in the Glen of Aherlow at the foot of the Galty Mountains, taking its name from Slieve-Grud (Sliabh-gCrot), which is the old name of the Galtys themselves. Here the root word is Crot (meaning in gen. plural, "harps," according to the old legend, for which see my "Wonders of Ireland," p. 106). But as both Dun and Sliab are neuter, Crot is eclipsed to grot or grud (gCrot) when following either, an eclipsis which still remains in "Dungrud," now in everyone's mouth in the neighbourhood, where the g of "Dungrud" corresponds to the track of the animal in the rock. For a vowel initial eclipsis, Lough Neagh is a good example. The root word is Each, representing Echach, gen. of Echo (the name of the man who gave name to the lake, according to the legend in the "Book of the Dun Cow"). But as Loch is a neuter noun, we have "Lough n-Eagh" or Lough Neagh instead of Lough Eagh. As a matter of fact, some early Anglo-Irish writers call it "Lough-Eaugh," dropping the N, as we often neglect both eclipsis and aspiration in our present anglicised names (See p. 4, XI.) Observe, though the origin given here for these two place names (Dungrud and Lough Neagh) is legend, the eclipsis is not legend, but actual grammatical fact, and quite correct. All this neuter eclipsis has been well explained from Zeuss, by the Rev. Dr. Hogan, S. J., in his "Battle of Rosnaree," and I have taken full advantage of his explanation here. Another excellent example of consonantal neuter eclipsis is the common word da-dtrian, two-thirds (da two, trian a third), where da is, or was, neuter, and eclipsed the t; and there the eclipsing d remains to this day. In by far the greatest number of cases this neuter eclipsis with its eclipsing letter has in the course of long ages, disappeared with the dispappearance of the old law itself; just as the stones of ancient buildings drop out when the mortar that held them together is gone. But in a few instances they still remain, as in the examples given above, and in others which the reader will see as we go along; for I will often direct attention to them. This phonetic law is not explained in my first two volumes; for the good reason that I did not know it myself when I wrote them. The existence of a neuter gender, with its effects, is a late discovery by the great German Celtic scholar Zeuss, and is fully set forth in his immortal work "Grammatica Celtica." Several instances of this neuter eclipsis occur in the first two volumes of this work, though they are there let pass unnoticed, such as Moynalty, in Dublin and Meath (vol. i. p. 424). I remember well about Moynalty. The two words of which it is composed are Magh or Moy, a plain, and ealta, bird-flocks (gen. plural). But when these two words were compounded in the old records, the letter n was inserted - Magh-n-ealta, plain of the bird-flocks. What brought the n there? This was a sore puzzle to me: and no wonder; for O'Donovan failed to explain it. And then the gratifying surprise when Zeuss's discovery cleared up the whole mystery and many another like it. Some of those neuter nouns, instead of eclipsing as of old, now often cause aspiration, where, according to modern rules there should be no aspiration, which I think is a remnant - a mere weakening - of the old eclipsing influence. I will direct attention to some cases of this kind as we go along.

Information From Griffith's Valution

Area in Acres, Roods and Perches:
353 0 35
Land value at the time in pounds, shillings and pence:
127 8 2
Building value at the time in pounds, shillings and pence:
25 2 0
Total value at the time in pounds, shillings and pence:
139 16 2
Heads of housholds living in the townland at this time:

Townland Information

What is a townland?:
A townland is one of the smallest land divisions in Ireland. They range in size from a few acres to thousands of acres. Many are Gaelic in origin, but some came into existence after the Norman invasion of 1169
Derry is a townland.
Other placesnames in this townland:
Some other placenames in or near this townland are...

Information From Maps

Original OS map of this area.
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Ireland was first mapped in the 1840s. These original maps are available online.
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Original OS maps at the Ordnance Survey of Ireland website.
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This link is not a link to the townland that you are currently researching; however, if you follow this link, you will see a search box near the top of the page which you can use to search for your townland.
Having followed this link, you will see several expandable links - each link has a plus sign on its left - on the top left of the page. Expand 'Base Information and Mapping'. Now it is possible to select the maps that you wish to view by clicking on the checkbox that is on the left of each map; this list includes the original Ordnance Survey maps.
You can select more than one map and you can use a slider to make one map more transparent than another. This allows you to view what features were present or absent at different points in time.
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Information from the Down Survey Website.
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The Down Survey website will tell you who owned this townland in 1641 (pre Cromwell) and in 1671 (post Cromwell).
Down Survey Website
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Information from Google Maps.
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You can use this link to find this townland on Google Maps.
Google Maps
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Information from the National Monuments Service.
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You can use this link to view a map of archaelogical features.
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Archaeological map from the National Monuments Service

Neighbouring Townlands

List of townlands that share a border with this townland:
This is a list of townlands that share a border with this townland.

Population and Census Information

People who lived here:
You can retrieve a list of people who lived in this townland from 1827 to 1911. This list is compiled from the following resources.
  • The Tithe Applotment Books
  • Griffith's Valuation
  • 1901 Census
  • 1911 Census
List of nineteenth century and early twentieth century inhabitants of this townland.
Church records of births, deaths and marriages:
Church records of births, deaths and marriages are available online at To search these records you will need to know the 'church parish' rather than the 'civil parish'. (The civil parish is the pre-reformation parish and was frequently used as a unit of administration in the past.)
Derry is in the civil parish of Ballinchalla.
Roman Catholic parishes:
This civil parish corresponds with the following Roman Catholic parish or parishes.
  • Cong and Neale
Church of Ireland parishes:
This civil parish corresponds with the following Church of Ireland parish.
  • Ballinachalla or Neale
In general, the civil parish and the Church of Ireland parish are the same, but, this is not always the case.

Other Sources

Information from the Logainm database.
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