Friday, 27 May 2016

Graiguenamanagh Abbey (Walsh)

The following is from Fr. Thomas Walsh's History of the Irish Hierarchy, published in New York in 1854, chapter xlix, at p. 493:

Graignemanach Vale of St Saviour AD 1204 was founded this abbey for Cistercians under the invocation of the Mother of God by William Mareschal earl of Pembroke AD 1225 William junior confirmed the donations in land of his father to this abbey AD 1330 Richard O Nolan was besieged in the steeple of this abbey and was compelled to deliver his son as a hostage for his future good conduct AD 1380 It was enacted by parliament that no mere Irishman should make profession in this abbey AD 1524 Charles O Cavanagh the abbot made a present to the abbey of a beautiful cross of silver richly gilt and adorned with precious stones he also purchased for the monastery several rich vestments and attended the Lateran council held in 1515 and 1516 as vicar general to the bishop of Leighlin AD 1537 a pension of 10 annually was granted to the last abbot Charles Mac Murrough O Cavenagh By an inquisition held in the ninth year of Elizabeth this abbey was found to possess six hundred and twenty acres of arable and pasture land eight townlands and eleven rectories with the tithes and alterages of the same The properties of this abbey were granted by patent to Sir Edward Butler of Lowgrange and to James Butler junior at the annual rent of £41 Irish

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Saint Natfrioch of Kildare

Saint Natfrioch of Kildare

A monastery for the canons of St. Augustine was founded at Kildare, of which St. Natfrioch is said to have been the first Abbot – he was the Priest who attended the institution of St. Brigid before the appointment of its first Bishop – he is spoken of as the companion of St. Brigid, and to have remained with her all his life, notwithstanding the superintendence of Conlaeth, and it is also stated that he was wont to read in the refectory while the nuns were at their meals.

P. 486, Ecclesiastical History of Ireland by Rev. Thomas Walsh

Saint Natfrioch of Kildare, pray for us!

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

Clonkeen (Walsh)

The following is from Fr. Thomas Walsh's History of the Irish Hierarchy, published in New York in 1854, chapter lviii, at p. 618:

Cluanchaoin not far distant from Clonenagh The following saints are recorded as bishops in this place St Fintan a holy anchorite who died AD 860 Aromeus or Aaron whose festival is held on the 1st of August

Wednesday, 4 May 2016

Timahoe (Walsh)

The following is from Fr. Thomas Walsh's History of the Irish Hierarchy, published in New York in 1854, chapter lviii, at p. 621:

Timahoe in the barony of Cullinagh and south of Stradbally anciently called Teagh mochoe from the founder Archdall would lead us to think that St Mochoe of Antrim was the founder who does not seem to have any establishment beyond the confines of Ulster As there were other saints of this name it must have been erected in some time posterior to the age of the Antrim saint who died in 497 AD 925 died the abbot Moyle Kevin He is the first abbot whose name is recorded AD 931 died the abbot Cosgrach AD 951 died Gormgall prelector of this abbey AD 969 died the abbot Finghen O Fiachrach AD 1001 died the abbot Conaing O Fiachra AD 1007 died the abbot Fensneachta O Fiachra AD 1142 the abbey was burned A round tower in fine preservation as well as some of the monastic ruins are still to be seen The doorway of this tower is the finest of the kind remaining in Ireland has some things in its style peculiar to the round tower of Kildare The doorway is formed of a hard siliceous sandstone It consists of two divisions separated from each other by a deep reveal and presenting each a double compound recessed arch resting on plain shafts with flat capitals the carving is all in very low relief its height is fifteen feet from the ground The capitals of the shafts are decorated with human heads and the bases which are in better preservation than the capitals present at their alternate eastern angles a similar human head and at their alternate western angles a figure not unlike an hour glass The measurement of the shafts of the external arch including the bases and capitals is five feet eight inches the breadth at the spring of the arch is three feet nine inches and at the base four feet and the entire height of the arch is seven feet six inches

Tuesday, 3 May 2016

The Bishops of Kildare in the Early Middle Ages

The following is from Fr. Thomas Walsh's History of the Irish Hierarchy, published in New York in 1854, chapter xvii, at p. 144 and following:

The see of Kildare seems indebted for its foundation to the celebrated nunnery established by St. Bridget in this place. The sanctity of this holy virgin and the excellence of her institute attracted hither vast multitudes so that it became very extensive and, in time, Kildare became a large and populous town. Hence arose a necessity for episcopal functions and thus St. Bridget was induced to make application for the appointment of a bishop. Her request was listened to and Conlaeth a person of retirement and sanctity was selected. He led for many years an ascetic life in a solitary spot on the banks of the Liffey. Conlaeth was consecrated about the year 490 and it would appear that this ceremony was conducted with more than usual magnificence as it was attended by many of the ancient and sainted fathers of the Irish Church.

Fiech, the bishop of Sletty, Ibar of Begerin, Erck of Slane, Maccaleus of Hy Falgia in the King's County and Bron of Caissel Iorra in Sligo and other prelates attended on this solemn occasion.

St. Conlaeth governed his see with great wisdom and during his incumbency the diocese of Kildare obtained a high rank among the sees of Ireland. It was not however the ecclesiastical metropolis of the province nor was its prelate recognized as an archbishop. Whatever preeminence existed in the province it pertained without doubt to the see of Sletty. Kildare enjoying this dignity at a later period when it was transferred from the see of Ferns in the 8th century. The cathedral of Kildare the most extensive and beautiful in the kingdom except that of Armagh belonged conjointly to the Nunnery of St Bridget and to the ordinary of the diocese.

Beyond the sanctuary the great aisle was divided by a partition. The bishop and his clergy entered the church by a door on the north side the abbess and her nuns entered by the south. St. Conlaeth, after a life of zeal and apostolical labors died the 3d of May 519. The names of his successors in the see of Kildare have been carefully handed down in an unbroken series until the year 1100 in which Aid O'Heremon became its bishop. St. Conlaeth was buried in the church of Kildare near the high altar. His bones or relics were AD 800 translated into a sliver gilt shrine and adorned with precious stones.

St Aid the black who, according to Colgan, from being king of Leinster became monk abbot and bishop of Kildare, died on the 10th of May 638. The annals of the Four Masters place the death of Aid abbot and bishop of Kildare in 638. It is probable that this abbot and bishop was only a member of the royal house of Leinster.

Lochen the Silent commonly called wise and styled abbot of Kildare. His memory is celebrated on the 12th of January and his death is mentioned under 694. Of him and his successor and others are doubts regarding their consecration as the annals of the Four Masters call them only abbots of Kildare. Sometimes the terms abbots and bishops are synonymous.

Farannan, whose death is mentioned in the year 697, his memory is kept on the 15th of January.

Maeldaborcon expressly styled bishop of Kildare died on the 19th of February 708.

Tola, a worthy soldier of Chris,t a bishop is omitted by Colgan. He died on the 3d of March 732.

Dima called also Modimoe was abbot of Kildare and Clonard. He died on the 3d of March 743.

Cathal O Farannan mentioned as abbot of Kildare died AD 747.

Lomtuil expressly called bishop of Kildare died AD 785.

Snedbran also called bishop of Kildare died in the same year.

Muredach O'Cathald abbot of Kildare died the same year.

Eudocius O'Diocholla abbot of Kildare died in 793.

Feolan O'Kellach abbot of Kildare died in May or June 799.

Lactan O Muctigern expressly called bishop of Kildare died in 813.

Murtogh O Kellagh abbot of Kildare died 820.

Sedulius abbot died in 828.

Tuadcar expressly called bishop of Kildare died AD 833.

Orthanac also bishop of Kildare died in 840.

Aedgene surnamed Brito, scribe, bishop and anchoret of Kildare, died AD 862 in the 116th year of his age.

Cohbtach O Muredach abbot of Kildare and a man of singular wisdom died in 868. Colgan says his festival is observed on the 18th of July.

Moengal bishop of Kildare died in 870. Lanigan puts Moengal as the successor of Aedgen

Robertac Mac Niserda bishop of Kildare, scribe and abbot of Achonry, died on the 15th of January 874.

Lasran Mac Moctigern bishop of Kildare, abbot of Fearna, died the same year.

Suibne O Finacta died in 880.

Seannal died in 884.

Largisius was slain in battle by the Danes of Dublin in 885.

Flanagan O Riagan called abbot of Kildare and prince of Leinster died in the year 920.

Crunmoel died on the 11th of December 929.

Malfinan died in 949 or 950.

Culian Mac Kellach abbot said to be slain by the Danes in 853.

Mured Mac Foelan of the royal blood of Leinster abbot of Kildare was slain by Amlave prince of the Danes and Kerbhal Mac Lorcan in 965.

Anmcaid bishop of Kildare died in 981 having spent a holy life to a good old age.