All Lewis entries for Clonenagh and Clonagheen

Clonenagh and Clonagheen

More information on Samuel Lewis' Topographical Dictionary of Ireland (1837)
Accompanying Lewis map for Laois


CLONAGHEEN, a parish, in the barony of MARY-BOROUGH WEST, QUEEN'S county, and province of LEINSTER, 3? miles (S. E. by S.) from Mountrath : the population is returned with the parish of Clonenagh. It is situated on the road from Dublin to Limerick, and is bounded on the south-west by the river Nore, over which is a neat bridge, here called the Poor Man's Bridge. There is a large tract of valuable bog. It is a rectory, in the diocese of Leighlin, and is part of the union of Clonenagh, for which and Clonagheen there is but one composition of tithes. The schools are also noticed under the head of that parish. In the R. C. divisions the parish forms part of the union or district of Mountrath.


CLONENAGH, a parish, partly in the baronies of CULLINAGH and MARYBOROUGH EAST, but chiefly in that of MARYBOROUGH WEST, QUEEN'S county, and province of LEINSTER ; containing, with the parish of Clonagheen and the post-town of Mountrath, 18,136 inhabitants. This place, originally called Cluain-aith-chin and Cluain-,aednach, is of very remote antiquity. A monastery was founded here, at an early period, by St. Fintan, who became its first abbot, and was succeeded by St. Columba, who died in 548. This abbey was destroyed in 838, by the Danes, who, in 843, carried its venerable abbot, Aid, who was also abbot of Tirdaglass, into Munster where, on the 8th of July, he suffered martyrdom. After being frequently plundered and destroyed by the Danes, it continued to flourish for a considerable period, but little is known of its history subsequently to the English invasion. At Gutney Cloy, in this parish, a battle took place between the forces of Brian Boroimhe, on their return from Clontarf, and those of Fitzpatrick, Prince of Ossory, The parish is situated on the road from Maryborough to Roscrea, and comprises, with Clonagheen, 34,855 statute acres, as applotted under the tithe act. Of these, from 9000 to 12,000 are bog, and about half that number is mountain and waste ; the reniainder is arable and pasture land, nearly in equal portions. The system of agriculture is greatly improved, and green crops have been generally introduced. Ballyfin House, the elegant mansion of Sir C. H. Coote, Premier Baronet of Ireland, is a modern structure in the Grecian style of architecture, and is fitted up in a style of costly splendour ; it is situated on a very elevated site on the side of a mountain, and commands extensive views of the surrounding country. The other seats are Springmount, that of Sir E. J. Walshe, Bart. ; Forest, of J. Hawkesworth, Esq. ; Ann Grove Abbey, of J. E. Scott, Esq. ; and Scotch Rath, of R, White, Esq. An extensive cotton manufactory is carried on at Mountrath, where fairs are held on Jan. 6th, Feb. 17th, April 20th, May 7th, June 20th, Aug. 10th, Sept. 29th, and Nov. 5th, for general farming stock. Petty sessions are held at Mountrath every Thursday, and at Ann Grove every alternate Wednesday.

The living is a rectory, in the diocese of Leighlin, episcopally united, in 1661, to the rectory and vicarage of Chonagheen, and in the alternate patronage of the Crown, which has two presentations, and of the Bishop, who has one : the tithes for both parishes amount to £1500 ; there is neither glebe-house nor glebe. There are two churches, one at Mountrath, a spacious and handsome edifice, erected in 1800, by aid of a gift of £900 and a loan of £500, and enlarged in 1830, by aid of a loan of £1500, from the late Board of First Fruits, and towards the repair of which the Ecclesiastical Commissioners have recently granted £246. 18. 7. ; and one at Roskelton, a neat small edifice, for the repair of which the Commissioniers have also granted £254. 12. 3. At Ballyfin is a chapel, endowed by the Hon. William Pole, the chaplain of which is paid by Lord Maryborough ; towards the repairs of this chapel, the Ecclesiastical Commissioners have also recently granted £368. 8. 4. in the R. C. divisions the parish is styled an abbacy, and constitutes the three benefices of Ballyfin, Mountrath and Clondacasey, and Raheen and Shanahoe, There are five chapels, all neat plain buildings, situated respectively at Mountrath, Ballyfin, Raheen, Shanahoc, and Clondacasey ; also places of worship for the Society of Friends and Wesleyan and Primitive Methodists, There are a monastery and convent of St. Patrick's and St. Bridget's confraternity, to which a school is attached ; the school-house was built by the late Dr. Delany. At Oak, Cootestreet, Ballyfin, Mountrath, Trummera, Raheen, and Ballyeagle, are national schools ; and there are five schools supported by subscription. In these schools about 680 boys and 450 girls are instructed ; and there are also five pay schools, in which are about 170 boys and 250 girls. The late Rt. Hon. W. Pole bequeathed £100 per annum late currency for the endowment of the chapel at Ballyfin, and £20 per annum for a schoolmaster and clerk. At Forest is a chalyheate spring.-See MOUNTRATH.


MOUNT-RATH, a market and post-town, in the parish of CLONENAGH, barony of MARYBOROUGH WEST, QUEEN'S county, and province of LEINSTER, 6- miles (W. S. W.) from Maryborough, on the road to Roscrea, and 47- (S. W.) from Dublin ; containing 2593 inha-bitants. This place, called also Moynrath, or the "fort in the bog." became, in the beginning of the 17th century, the property of Sir Charles Coote, who, although the surrounding country was then in a wild state and overspread with woods, laid the foundation of the present town. In 1628, Sir Charles obtained for the inhabitants a grant of two weekly markets and two fairs, and established a very extensive linen and fustian manufactory, which in the war of 1641, together with much of his other property here, was destroyed. His son Charles regained the castle and estate of Mountrath, with other large possessions, and at the Restoration was created Earl of Mountrath, which title, on the decease of Charles Henry, the seventh earl, in 1802, became extinct. The present possessor is Sir Charles Henry Coote, premier baronet of Ireland. The town, which in 1831 contained 429 houses, is neatly built, and has been the seat of successive manufactures ; iron was made and wrought here till the neighbouring woods were consumed for fuel, and on its decline the cotton manufacture was established ; an extensive factory for spinning and weaving cotton is carried on by Mr. Greenham, who employs 150 persons in the spinning-mills, and about 500 in weaving calicoes at their own houses ; the average quantity manufactured is from 200 to 250 pieces weekly. Stuff-weaving is also carried on extensively ; there is a large brewery and malting establishment, and an extensive oil-mill ; and the inhabitants carry on a very considerable country trade. The market is on Saturday ; the veal sold here is considered to be the best in the country ; much corn and butter are also sold in it : the market house is a respectable building. There are fairs on Feb. 17th, May 8th, June 20th, Aug. 10th, Sept. 19th, and Nov. 6th. General sessions are held here in June and December under the new act, and petty sessions every Thursday. A new court-house and bridewell are about to be erected. The parish church, a handsome structure, is situated in the town : it was nearly rebuilt and considerably enlarged in 1832, by a grant from the late Board of First Fruits, and by subscription, and further alterations have been lately made by means of a grant from the Ecclesiastical Commissioners. Mount-Rath is the head of a R. C. union or district, comprising part of the parish of Clonenagh ; there are two chapels, one in the town and the other at Clonad ; the former a very large cruciform building. In Coote-street there is a monastery of the order of St. Patrick, in which are a superior and eight monks, who superintend a classical boarding-school, a school for the middling classes, and another in connection with the Board of National Education. There is also in the town a convent of the order of St. Bridget, consisting of a superioress, eleven professed nuns, and one lay sister ; some of whom are engaged in the education of young ladies of the higher classes, and others in superintending a school for poor children in connection with the Board above-mentioned ; the average number of pupils in the latter school is about 200. There are places of worship for the Society of Friends, and for Wesleyan and Primitive Methodists ; and a dispensary is supported in the usual manner. The parochial school, situated in the town, is under the patronage of Sir Chas. H. Coote and Lady Coote, who entirely support it ; the average number of pupils is 100 of both sexes : the building, which is large, was erected in 1820, at an expense of £500, defrayed partly by subscription, and partly by a donation of £230 from Sir Chas. Coote, who also gave an acre of ground for its site ; it was enlarged in 1821, at an additional expense of £350, half of which was contributed by subscription, and the remainder from the Lord-Lieutenant's fund.

Ballyfinn House, the fine residence of Sir Chas. H. Coote, Bart., is situated in the centre of a demesne and pleasure grounds laid out with the greatest taste, on sloping grounds overlooking a noble lake, and nearly surrounded by densely planted hills : the entrance to the mansion is by a portico of the Ionic order : the interior is fitted up in the most costly style and has a fine collection of paintings, statues, and busts, and a large and well selected library ; the pavement of the great hall was brought from Rome. The saloon and ballroom are splendid apartments ; many of the articles of furniture of each were executed for Geo. IV., when Prince of Wales, and purchased by the present possessor. The other principal seats in the vicinity are Forest, the residence of J. Hawkesworth, Esq. ; Anne Grove Abbey, of J. E. Scott, Esq. ; Springmount, of Mrs. Bourne ; Donore, of W. Despard, Esq. ; Scotchrath, of R. White, Esq. ; Roundwood, of W. Hamilton, Esq. ; Newpark, of Jas. Smith, Esq., M.D., formerly the residence of the late Earl of Mountrath ; Westfield Farm, of J. Price, Esq. ; Laca, of John Pim, Esq. ; Castletown, of Edw. Palmer, Esq. ; and Killeny, of Edw. Maher, Esq.

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