I was recently reading a paper by the one-time president of the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland, T.J. Westropp (1860-1922). His subject was the Churches of County Clare and it includes a useful appendix on the patrons and founders of the churches. I reproduce the list below, please note that in the references to the feasts of the saints the letter 'O' refers to the Martyrology of Oengus and 'D' to the Martyrology of Donegal. Those preceded by an asterisk are female.
List of the Patrons and Founders of Churches.
The list of patrons and church builders in this county, during the period from 450 to 750, extends to over sixty names, nor can I satisfy myself that it is in any way complete. Owing to difficulties of identity and date, they are arranged alphabetically, not chronologically.
ACCOBRAN of Kilrush, January 28th (0, pp. 29-39) or 29th (D).
AEDAN of Iniscatha, stated to be the famous saint of Lindisfarne, August 31st.
If so, Bede records his death in 651. The Leabar Brecc identifies Inis Medcoitt with both Scattery and Lindisfarne, but the matter is very doubtful.
*BANAWLA or MANAWLA, supposed to be Tola, of Dysertodea; legendary name attached to the high cross, sometimes " Monalagh."
BLATHMAC of Rathblamaic, father of Onchu, supposed Blathmenus of "Vita S. Flannani," c. 640, or Blathmac, friend of Macreehy, c. 550.
BRECAN of Kilbrecan, May 1st, son of King Eochy Bailldearg, 440; living, c. 480; shared Aranmore with Enda, and founded churches of Noughaval or Kilbrecan; Clooney, near Quin and Doora; wells at Noughaval and Toomullin.
BRECAN, nephew of the last, and cousin of Diman; probably commemorated October 12th, c. 520.
BRECANUS, a contemporary of S. Molua and Elannan, c. 640.
BRENDAN (of doubtful identity), has wells in Kilmoon Parish, and at Farihy in Kilfearagh.
BRENDAN, of Ardfert, A.D. 550, had a church at Inisdadrum.
BRENDAN MAC FIRLOGA resided at Dubhdoire or Doora.
*BRIDGET, daughter of Conchraid, of the family of Mactalius, was Abbess of Feenish, c. 550; she is possibly Patroness of the wells at Kiltanon, Cappafeean, Finnor (in Ibrickan), and Coney Island.
CAMIN of Iniscaltra, son of Dima, of the race of Cathair Mor, and half-brother of King Guaire Aidhne; churches of St. Caiman, at Iniscaltra, Moynoe, and perhaps Kilcameen, near Kilfenora, died March 25th, 653 (Colgan) (0).
CAEIDE of Kilkeedy church and well, March 3rd; perhaps also of Kilkee (Cil Caeide).
CALLAN of Iniscaltra, August Quart. Cal. (D).
*CANNARA of Kilconry, Visited St. Senan, and was buried on Iniscatha.
CAEITAN of Kilcredaun church in Moyarta, a disciple of Senan ("Vita S. Senani"), wells at Kilcredaun, near Carrigaholt; at Kilcredaun, near O'Brien's Bridge; and Kilcredaunadober, near Cratloe; living c. 550.
CARROLL, of KilCarroll, near Kilrush, where his well, ''laght," and wooden image remained in 1816.
*COCHA of Rossbenchoir; nurse of St. Kieran.
COLAN of Iniscaltra, well at Tobercolan, died at Tomgraney, 551 (Annals Four Masters), October 24th (D).
COLMAN MACDUACH of Kilmacduach, half brother of Guaire Aidne, and (through their mother) a descendant of Dathi. Colman studied in Aran, and lived a recluse life at Kinallia, Slieve Carran, and Oughtmama; wells at Teernea, Lough George, and near Crusheen. He founded Kilmacduach about 610; his mediaeval "Life" is extant; he died at Oughtmama 29th October, 632. He gives his name to Macduach's river in Clooney Parish, near Quin.
COLMAN of Clonrush.
COLMANS the three, of Oughtmama churches and well and Glensleade well.
COLUMBA of Glencolumbcille, probably the famous saint of Iona, who is the traditional founder of Crumlin, after leaving Aran, June 9th. Another tradition connects him with Iniscaltra; he died at Iona 597.
COMAN. There was a Comman out at Arran, November 21; his son Colman, November 21, was also a saint.
*CONANDiL, sister of Senan.
CONNELL of the lost church of Kilconnell, on the Fergus (will of King Cormac, of Cashel, 902).
CORNAN, of Kilcornan, near Ennistymon, and Tobercoman, near Ballyvaughan.
CROINE, patron of Kilcroney Church and well at Liscrona.
CRONAN of Tomgraney, October 24th, c. 505; November 1st. He or the second Cronan was also patron of Inchicronan and Termoncronan. The wells at Killokennedy Church and Corrakyle are dedicated to a Cronan.
CRONAN of Tomfinlough, the Leabar Brecc identifies him with Cronan of Roscrea, April 28th.
CUANNA of Kilshanny, perhaps Mochunna (the abbot Covanus) of Kilquane' and Feakle.
DIOMA of Kildimo, near Kilrush, perhaps Diman, nephew of Aenghus, son of Cairthinn Fionn.
*ELIA of Killeely, sister of St. Mainchin, c. 550.
*EMERIA, see Imer.
ENDA of Aran, son of Connall the red, was granted Aran by his sister's husband, Engus, King of Cashel; founder of the church of Killeany, in the Burren; March 21st, c. 480: see his " Life " in Colgan.
FACHTNAN of Kilfenora, perhaps of Ross, as the same saint's day, August 14th, was observed at both places (D).
FINGHIN of Quin, perhaps Einghin of Roscrea, February 5th (D), or Finghin of Clonmacnoise, whose coarbs were connected with Tomgraney.
FLANNAN of Killaloe, son of King Torlough; his Latin Life is preserved; he preached in the Hebrides, and gave his name to the Flannan Isles there; living c. 680, December 19th.
*IMER, or Emeria, of Killimer.
*INGHEAN BAOITH of Kilnaboy, March 29th, December 29th; wells at Kilnaboy, Commons, Glensleade, Quakerstown, Killavella, Dulick in Templemaley, Kiltachy, Kilshanny, Aglish, Moy Ibricane, Magowna, Ballycoree, Shallee (two), Cullann, Castletown (Clooney), Drumumna and Quin.
Perhaps daughter of Mobaoi, of Cluan Fhionnabhair (Clooney of Kilfenora), December 14; his mother was of Loop Head. A certain " Columb inghen Baiti," March 23rd, is named. Ethne and Sodelb, daughters of Baoith, founded Donabate Church, in county Dublin.
*ITA of Killeedy, January 15th, living 551. She is alleged to have founded a church in Southern Clare.
KIERAN of Kilkerin, Clonderlaw, locally "Keereen," wells there and at Kilnasoola. Perhaps of Clonmacnoise.
LAUGHTEEN of Kilnamona, chui'ch and well, and the wells at Kilfarboy and Stacpoole's Bridge, near Miltown Malbay; the reliquary of his arm was preserved at Kilnamona for some time, and thence sent to Lislachtin, Kerry. He is most probably Lachtin, friend of St. Senan, c. 550, and gave his name to Autkeenlaughteen at Kilnamona.
LONAN of Killaspuglonan; also of Killilagh and Clooney (in Kilfenora) church and wells, and Derrynavahagh well in Kilmoon Parish. A friend of Maccreehy, c. 550.
LUCHTIGHERN, son of Cutrito, of Tomfinlough, and perhaps of Inisdimain (Ennistymon, or Moy Inisdia). A friend of Maccreehy, c. 550, April 13th, as kept in parish in 1839. April 28th, in Calendar of Oengus.
MACCREEHY, Maccreiche, or Maccreeius, of Kilmacreehy, a disciple of Ailbe of Emly, who died 540, having lived to an advanced age, founding Kilmacreehy, Kilmanaheen, and Inagh churches, about 580. April 11th (D): his curious Latin "Life " is extant.
MAINCHIN of Kilmanaheen, a disciple of Maccreehy, c. 580. Perhaps the Bishop of "Luimneach," now known as St, Munchin, and Manchenus.
MOBAOI of Cluain Thionnabhair (probably Clooney, in Kilfenora); his mother came from Loop Head; December 14th.
MOCHONNA of Feakle, well at Moynoe, "Mochonna of Magheo," March 29. Perhaps the Abbot Covanns of Kilquane.
MOCHULLA* of Tulla, in eastern Clare, wells at Lough Graney, Lough Bridget, Tulla, Kilgorey, Portanne, Broadford, Trough, Palahine, Miltown (Tulla), Cragg, Lahardaun, Cappavilla, Carrigaholt, Scattery, and Moylough. Perhaps the "Molocus" of Inistibraid, a friend of St. Senan. If so, living c. 550. Was remembered as a bishop at Tulla.
MOGUA of Noughaval (perhaps of Kilmoon, Kilmugown, 1302, but name is difficult), wells at Noughaval and Moy. Perhaps Mochua or Cronan.
MOLUA, also Dalua, Lua, and Lugad, of Killaloe. Abbot and Patron of Kildalua, c. 640, also of Friars' Island, and probably Killue (Killuga, 1302), Killofin (Killugafion, 1302).
MORONOC of Inisloe, the penitentiary, a friend of S. Senan, c. 550.
ONCHU of Killonaghan, probably the son of Blathmac, whose remains were laid with those of Finan in a "Sepulchrum religionis" at Clonmacnoise.
RICIN and REKIN of Clooney, see Brecan.
RUADHAN of Lorrha, some think of Ruan. April 15th, died 584.
SANCTAN of Drumlaigill, in Tradree (Dromline, Drumligil, 1302), son of Samuel the low-headed, and Dectir, daughter of Muredagh Muingdearg. May 11th.
SCREABAN (? Sribanus, 1302) of Clondegad, wells there and at Anna, Clondegad.
SEANACH of Kilshanny. Probably brother of Senan, c. 550, and of the Magharees, Co. Kerry.
SENAN, son of Gerchinn of Moylongh, born late in the fifth century; died 553. Several early lives are extant. He was of Iniscatha (Scattery), Moylough, Iniscaorach (Mutton Island), Inisloe, Feenish, Inismore, Doonass (Kiltinanlea), and Ross (Ros an airchail). Besides these churches and wells, he has wells at Scattery, Kilclogher, Carrow, near Kilmacduane, Erribul (in Kilfeddan), Kilshanny, Killaneena, near Clonlea, Cooraclare, Kilclogher, Drim, and Kilcredaun; he is also the traditional founder of Kilmihil Church. March 8th.
SEILY of Kilseily church and well, an unknown saint.
STELLAN of Iniscaltra, a contemporary of St. Caimin, died May 4th, c. 650. Perhaps also of Terryglas. May 26th.
TOLA of Dysert Tola (Dysert O'Dea), son of Donchad, of the race of Corbmac, died March 30th, 734 or 737. He was Bishop of Clonard and Disert Tola, in the Upper Cantred of Dalcais. His crosier is preserved. He was probably founder of Kiltoola.
VOYDAN or BAIGHDEAN of Kilvoydan, graveyard, well, and cross near Corofin, and Kilvoydan graveyard, well, and bullaun near Kilraughtis.
T. J. Westropp, The Churches of County Clare and the Origin of the Ecclesiastical Divisions in that County. 100-180 at 106-11. PRIA, Ser.III., Vol.VI., 1900-1902.
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