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See Appendix I. for the chief inhabitants ofConnaught, and their possessions, towards the close of the sixteenth century, when the Irish tenures ceased, and the principal lords surrendered to Queen Elizabeth.
NOTE B. See page i, note*. "Barony ofClare." The plains of Magh Seola, which form the present barony of Clare in the County of Galway, were the inheritance of the O'Flaherties and their ancestors, for upwards of 800 years antecedent to the thirteenth century. This district is frequently mentioned in our annals, and other old writings. The Four Masters commence their celebrated work by stating, that the " antediluvian nymph" Ceasoir died at Cuil Cesra in Connaught, and that she was interred at Car n Cesra. In our author's Ogyg. p. 162, it appears that Cnoc Meadha Siuil, a well-known hill, now called Knockmaa, near Tuam, in this barony of Clare, was supposed to be, "fertur fuisse," Car n Cesra; and that Cuil Cesra was near it: and to this day, an ancient earn, or monumental pile of stones, may be seen on the summit of that hill. In this district was fought, in the third century, the famous battle of Magh Mucruimhe, on a plain lying immediately to the west of the town of Athenry; in which battle Art, King of Ireland, was killed. The spot where he fell is still shewn, and is called Turloch Airt. See ante, p. 43, note '. Our author, in Ogyg. p. 329, points to it as situate " inter Moyvoelam et Kilcornan.'' The old castle of Moyvoda is still standing, and to the south of it lies Turloch Airt. It has been observed, that many less remarkable places have been distinguished by monuments in other countries.
Not long after this occurrence, the territory or plains of Moy-Seola appear noticed as the scene of some of the apostolic labours of St. Patrick. An old unpublished history of Ireland, preserved in the Library of the Royal Irish Academy, informs us, "that St. Patrick arrived in Connaught in A. D. 434, and making towards the twenty-four sons of Brian," see ante, p. 127, "Echean, the eldest of them, mounting his horse, set spurs to him, and advised the rest of his brethren to do the same, and not to countenance the blessed clergyman; which they all did, save only Duach Galach, the youngest, who, staying on foot, courteously saluted St. Patrick, and tendered him respect and obedience. The holy man went still after Echean, and having overtaken him, asked if he were the man, which he denied; but St. Patrick, notwithstanding, cursed him, saying: 'if you be Echean, I deprive both you and all your brethren about you of all royalty and felicity, except him only who honoured and cherished me, for my Lord Jesus Christ his sake.' Then Duach Galach replyed, that if he was the eldest son he would have farther pleased the holy man. St. Patrick blessed him saying, you and your posterity shall be kings over your brethren." And so it came to pass, for the future kings of Connaught, and the O'Flaherties of Iar-Connaught, and several other great families, were descended from this Duach. The story is, however, variously told; for which see Ogyg. p. 375; the Pedigree of the Hy-Briuin Aoi, by Duald Mac Firbis; and the Tripartite Life, Trias Thaum. p. 203 ; and part ii. ch. 52. But St. Patrick afterwards blessed the sons of Brian, M suaque sacra benedictione mull 2 nivit nivit filios Briani;" the O' Flaherties, and all the people of Hy-Briuin Seola, "gentemque de Hua-Briuin." Here also he built the church of Domnach-mor, now called Domnach Patruig, on the banks of Loch-Sealga, of which considerable remains may be seen at the present day.
Loch-Sealga is now called Lough-Hacket, which name it received from one of those English families planted in. Moy-Seola, in the thirteenth century, by the Earl of
Ulster, when the O'Flaherties were driven westward by the power of the De Burgos.
Hist. Gal way, pp. 51, 219. In A. D. 1300, some of these " Hackets" accompanied the
Earl Richard de Burgo on the expedition to Scotland Cal. Rot Pat. 31 Edw. L
No. 21, and they continued retainers of the De Burgos to a later period Id. Rot Pat.
3, 4 Edw. II. No. 127. By them was built the castle called Castle Hacket. In A. D. 1584, 29 Jan. it was found by inquisition, that " the sept of the Hackets was seised of the island called Han-Hacket in Moytiter Murcho," i. e. in Moy Seola; "and of 12 quarters of land there, called Magherylary."—Inq., Rolls Off. In the composition for the territory of Clanrickard in that year, it appears that "the land of Shane bwye's sept of Castell Mc Hackett were 34 quarters."—See Appendix, No. I., and for more of this family of Hacket, see Rot. Pat. 15° Jac. I., p. 2, and 170, p. 2.
The district now forming Clare barony, was thickly castellated by the settlers above alluded to, during the thirteenth, and the three succeeding, centuries. The following enumeration of those castles, with their proprietors, &c., is extracted from "The Division of Connaught, A. D. 1586," preserved in the British Museum, Cotton, Titus, B. xiii. p. 399: "The Baronie of Clare, conteininge Moyntagh Mc Hugh, Moynter Moroghowe, and Maghere-reogh, x miles long and vi broade; and is, after like rate, plowlands xvi.—John Burke fitz-Thomas, and Mc Creamon (Redmond) chief in the same.—Parishes. Vicarage of Clare, vicar, of Kilmillayn, vicar, of Lekagh, vicar.
of Kil vicar, of Bealclarhome.—Gent, and castles. Therleof Clanricard, Clare;
UUig Reogh, Dromghriffin; John Lynch fitz-William, Yowghule; Tybbot Lyogh, Loscananon; Mac Walter called Thomas Mc Henry, Ballenduffe; Moyler Mc Shean, Cloynebow; Walter fitz-Ab. fitz-Ed., Masse; Nicholas Lynch, Anaghcoyne; Henry fitz-Edmond, Leagkagh; Mc Reamon, Cloghenwoyr; Ullig Mc Reamon, Castle Hackett; Walter Burke, Kilnemanegh; Mc Walter's sept Cahermorise; Moyler Mc Reamon, Anaghkyne; Wil. Grana Mc Ric, Cloghran; Redmund Mc Moyler Mc Roe, Bealclarhome; Redmund Mc Walter, Aghkyne; Ullig Mc Richard, Comor; William Gaynard, Carigin; Meyler Mc Rickard, Tawmagh; Richard Burke, Coroffyny; James fitz-Ambrose, Anbale; Thomas Balue, Qworanonyn; Thomas Ballagh, Beallabeanchere; John Burke titz-Thomas of Balliudere, and of Deremaclaghlyn ; Murrogh M° Swyne, Kyleskiegh; Edmund Owhny, Achrym; Walter Boy, Grange; Johnoge fitz-John fitz-Ed., Carnan; Richard Burke fitz Tho„ Beallauea; Tir'.agh Caragh Me Swyne, Cahirnefieke; Ffoxe's Castle. Cas. 33." Most
Most of these thirty-three castles, which we here find inhabited in the barony of Clare, in A. D. 1586, were erected by the De Burgos, but they are now all in ruins. The Four Masters state, that the castle of Coroffyny, Coradhfinne, now Corofin, was built in A. D. 1451, by Mac William himself, i.e. Ulick, son of Ulick an fhiona, and father of Ulick, who, A. D. 1503, defeated O'Kelly [Melaghlin], lord of Hy-Many, and destroyed his castles of Garbh-doire [Garbally], Muine-an. Mheadha [Monivea~\, and Gallach [Castleblakeney], places now (1844) well known in the county of Gal way. The Four Masters add, that O'Kelly complained of those outrages to the Lord Deputy, Gerald, eighth Earl of Kildare; and that his complaint occasioned the memorable battle ofCnoc-Tuadh [the Hill of the Hatchett], fought in this barony of Clare, in A. D. 1504. But that such was the cause of that great and disastrous outbreak, does not seem credible, or consistent with the general policy of the English rulers at the time; which was, »ot to afford any aid to the native Irish chieftains, or to redress their wrongs, but rather to root them out and seize their lands. And we are elsewhere informed that' * the Burkes be of Englishe nacion;" and " berith mortal hate to the Kelleys."— State J'apers, ii. p. 451. But the " Book of Howthe" expressly states, that the battle of Cnoc-tuadh was occasioned by a private quarrel between the Lord Deputy and De Burgo. As the singularly curious account of that battle, one of " the most bloody that stains the Irish annals," contained in the old Book of Howth, has not been published. I am induced to insert it here, from a manuscript in the Library of the Royal Dublin Society, stated to have been taken from that Book, fo. 108, a.—See King's Collections preserved in that Library.
"THE BATTLE OF KNOCKTOW, A. D. 1504.
"After this the Earl [of Kildare"] married another daughter of his to a great man in Connaught [Mac William of Clanrickard], which was not so used as the Earl could be pleased with; and said he would be revenged upon this Irishman, who stood at defiance with the Earl and all his partakers. The Earl sent to all the Irish lords that were his friends, as O'Neil, O'Reily, O'Conor of O Faly, and all the power of the English Pale, so many as he could possibly make. For the Earl understood that all the Irish in Ireland were divided between him and his adversarys. They were a great number, whereof he had good experience. Therefore he made better provision of all things; and the best men in all the English Pale, both spiritual and temporal. And being 20 miles off Knocktow, he called the noblemen to counccll. Amongst all were certain bishops and men of law. When O'Neill saw them he said: ' My Lord of Kildare, command the bishopps to go home and pray, for bishop's councells ought not to be taken in matters of warr, for their profession is to pray and preach, to make fair weather, and not to be privy to man-slaughter or bloodshed, but in preaching and