Tuesday, 11 September 2012

Clonenagh Church

I found this ruin by pure chance on a trip out the N7 towards Boris on Ossarry to find the Abbey of Aghaboe.Clonenagh Church was built in the 16th century. In the 17th century, it was converted to a Protestant parish church of the Diocese of Leighlin. It continued to be used at least to the end of the 18th century.Little remains now of this site. Now divided by the N7 this is all part of the one complex allegedly founded in 548 by St. Fintan. Nothing remains of the original structure which was destroyed in 838 by the Vikings. The site was plundered again in 937 by the King of Cashel and the Danes of Waterford. The main structure seems to be in quite good condition for its age when compared to some other sites, there is a lovely example of a pointed window at one end of the church. Locals claim that up to 7 churches have been located at this site in its history with the remains of one still there and archaeological evidence for 2 others. The present remains are of a 15th century church which was later used as a Protestant church and the graveyard is still used mainly by the Church of Ireland. It would seem from my research that a holy well which has since now been destroyed, was associated with the site and a holy tree which has a very interesting story attached. Unfortunatly both of which i missed when i stopped off, so i think a return trip for a closer look will follow soon.

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