Munster is one of the provinces of Ireland, in the south west of Ireland. In early Ireland, the Kingdom of Munster was one of the kingdoms of Gaelic Ireland ruled by a "king of over-kings". Following the Norman invasion of Ireland, the ancient kingdoms were shired into counties for administrative and judicial purposes. In centuries, local government legislation has seen further sub-division of the historic counties. Munster has no official function for local government purposes. For the purposes of the ISO, the province is listed as one of the provincial sub-divisions of the State and coded as "IE-M". Geographically, Munster covers a total area of 24,675 km2 and has a population of 1,280,020, with the most populated city being Cork. Other significant urban centres in the province include Waterford. In the early centuries AD, Munster was the domain of the Iverni peoples and the Clanna Dedad familial line, led by Cú Roí and to whom the king Conaire Mór belonged. In the 5th century, Saint Patrick spent several years in the area and founded Christian churches and ordained priests.
During the Early Middle Ages, most of the area was part of the Kingdom of Munster, ruled by the Eóganachta dynasty. Prior to this, the area was ruled by the Corcu Loígde overlords. Rulers from the Eóganachta included Cathal mac Finguine and Feidlimid mac Cremthanin. Notable regional kingdoms and lordships of Early Medieval Munster were Iarmuman, Osraige, Uí Liatháin, Uí Fidgenti, Éile, Múscraige, Ciarraige Luachra, Corcu Duibne, Corcu Baiscinn, Déisi Muman. By the 9th century, the Gaels had been joined by Norse Vikings who founded towns such as Cork and Limerick, for the most part incorporated into a maritime empire by the Dynasty of Ivar, who periodically would threaten Munster with conquest in the next century. Around this period Ossory broke away from Munster; the 10th century saw the rise of the Dalcassian clan, who had earlier annexed Thomond, north of the River Shannon to Munster. Their leaders were the ancestors of the O'Brien dynasty and spawned Brian Boru the most noted High King of Ireland, several of whose descendants were High Kings.
By 1118, Munster had fractured into the Kingdom of Thomond under the O'Briens, the Kingdom of Desmond under the MacCarthy dynasty, the short-lived Kingdom of Ormond under the O'Kennedys. The three crowns of the flag of Munster represent these three late kingdoms. There was Norman influence from the 14th century, including by the FitzGerald, de Clare and Butler houses, two of whom carved out earldoms within the Lordship of Ireland, the Earls of Desmond becoming independent potentates, while the Earls of Ormond remained closer to England; the O'Brien of Thomond and MacCarthy of Desmond surrendered and regranted sovereignty to the Tudors in 1543 and 1565, joining the Kingdom of Ireland. The impactful Desmond Rebellions, led by the FitzGeralds, soon followed. By the mid-19th century much of the area was hit hard in the Great Famine the west; the province was affected by events in the Irish War of Independence in the early 20th century, there was a brief Munster Republic during the Irish Civil War.
The Irish leaders Michael Collins and earlier Daniel O'Connell came from families of the old Gaelic Munster gentry. Noted for its traditions in Irish folk music, with many ancient castles and monasteries in the province, Munster is a tourist destination. During the fifth century, St. Patrick spent seven years founding churches and ordaining priests in Munster, but a fifth-century bishop named Ailbe is the patron saint of Munster. In Irish mythology, a number of ancient goddesses are associated with the province including Anann, Áine, Grian, Clíodhna, Aimend, Mór Muman, Bébinn and Queen Mongfind; the druid-god of Munster is Mug Ruith. Another legendary figure is Donn; the province has long had trading and cultural links with continental Europe. The tribe of Corcu Loígde had a trading fleet active along the French Atlantic coast, as far south as Gascony, importing wine to Munster; the Eóganachta had ecclesiastical ties with Germany, which show in the architecture of their ceremonial capital at the Rock of Cashel.
The majority of Irish ogham inscriptions are found in Munster, principally in areas occupied by the Iverni the Corcu Duibne. Europe's first linguistic dictionary in any non-Classical language, the Sanas Cormaic, was compiled by Munster scholars, traditionally thought to have been directed by the king-bishop Cormac mac Cuilennáin; the School of Ross in Munster was one of Europe's leading centres of learning in the Early Middle Ages. Several sports in Munster are organised on a provincial basis, or operate competitions along provincial lines; this includes traditionally popular sports such as hurling, Gaelic football, rugby union and soccer, as well as cricket and others. Munster is noted for its tradition of hurling. Three of the four most successful teams in the All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship are from Munster; the final of the Munster Senior Hurling Championship is one of the most important days in the Irish GAA calendar. Munster is the only province in Ireland that all of its counties have won an All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship.
Traditionally, the dominant teams in Munster football are Kerry GAA and Cork GAA, although Tipperary GAA and Limerick GAA have won All-Ireland Senior Football Championships. Kerry in particular are the most successful county in the history of football. Rugby is a popular game in the cities of Limerick a
Saint Columba was an Irish abbot and missionary Evangelist credited with spreading Christianity in what is today Scotland at the start of the Hiberno-Scottish mission. He founded the important abbey on Iona, which became a dominant religious and political institution in the region for centuries, he is the Patron Saint of Derry. He was regarded by both the Gaels of Dál Riata and the Picts, is remembered today as a Catholic saint and one of the Twelve Apostles of Ireland. Colmcille studied under some of Ireland's most prominent church figures and founded several monasteries in the country. Around 563 he and his twelve companions crossed to Dunaverty near Southend, Argyll, in Kintyre before settling in Iona in Scotland part of the Ulster kingdom of Dál Riata, where they founded a new abbey as a base for spreading Celtic Christianity among the northern Pictish kingdoms who were pagan, he remained active in Irish politics. Three surviving early medieval Latin hymns may be attributed to him. Colmcille was born to Fedlimid and Eithne of the Cenel Conaill in Gartan, a district beside Lough Gartan, in Tír Chonaill in the north of Ireland.
On his father's side, he was great-great-grandson of Niall of the Nine Hostages, an Irish high king of the 5th century. He was baptised in Temple-Douglas, in the County Donegal parish of Conwal, by his teacher and foster-uncle Saint Crunathan, it is not known for sure if his name at birth was Colmcille or if he adopted this name in life. In the Irish language his name means'dove', the same name as the Prophet Jonah, which Adomnán of Iona as well as other early Irish writers were aware of, although it is not clear if he was deliberately named after Jonah or not; when sufficiently advanced in letters he entered the monastic school of Movilla, at Newtownards, under St. Finnian who had studied at St. Ninian's "Magnum Monasterium" on the shores of Galloway, he was about twenty, a deacon when, having completed his training at Movilla, he travelled southwards into Leinster, where he became a pupil of an aged bard named Gemman. On leaving him, Colmcille entered the monastery of Clonard, governed at that time by Finnian, noted for sanctity and learning.
Here he imbibed the traditions of the Welsh Church, for Finnian had been trained in the schools of St. David. In early Christian Ireland the druidic tradition collapsed due to the spread of the new Christian faith; the study of Latin learning and Christian theology in monasteries flourished. Colmcille became a pupil at the monastic school at Clonard Abbey, situated on the River Boyne in modern County Meath. During the sixth century, some of the most significant names in the history of Celtic Christianity studied at the Clonard monastery, it is said that the average number of scholars under instruction at Clonard was 3,000. Colmcille was one of twelve students of St. Finnian who became known as the Twelve Apostles of Ireland, he became a monk and was ordained a priest. Another preceptor of Colmcille was St. Mobhi, whose monastery at Glasnevin was frequented by such famous men as St. Canice, St. Comgall, St. Ciarán. A pestilence which devastated Ireland in 544 caused the dispersion of Mobhi's disciples, Colmcille returned to Ulster, the land of his kindred.
He was a striking figure of great stature and powerful build, with a loud, melodious voice which could be heard from one hilltop to another. The following years were marked by the foundation of several important monasteries: Derry, at the southern edge of Inishowen. While at Derry it is said that he planned a pilgrimage to Rome and Jerusalem, but did not proceed farther than Tours. Thence he brought a copy of those gospels that had lain on the bosom of St. Martin for the space of 100 years; this relic was deposited in Derry. Tradition asserts that, sometime around 560, he became involved in a quarrel with Saint Finnian of Movilla Abbey over a psalter. Colmcille copied the manuscript at the scriptorium under Saint Finnian. Saint Finnian disputed his right to keep the copy; the dispute led to the pitched Battle of Cúl Dreimhne in Cairbre Drom Cliabh in 561, during which many men were killed. A second grievance that led him to induce the clan Neill to rise and engage in battle against King Diarmait at Cooldrevny in 561 was the king's violation of the right of sanctuary belonging to Colmcille's person as a monk on the occasion of the murder of Prince Curnan, the saint's kinsman.
Prince Curnan of Connaught, who had fatally injured a rival in a hurling match and had taken refuge with Colmcille, was dragged from his protector's arms and slain by Diarmaid's men, in defiance of the rights of sanctuary. A synod of clerics and scholars threatened to excommunicate him for these deaths, but St. Brendan of Birr spoke on his behalf with the result that he was allowed to go into exile instead. Colmcille's own conscience was uneasy, on the advice of an aged hermit, Molaise, he resolved to expiate his offence by going into exile and win for Christ as many souls as had perished in the terrible battle of Cúl Dreimhne, he left Ireland, to return only many years later. Colmcille's copy of the psalter has been traditionally associated with the Cathach of St. Colmcille. In 563, he travelled to Scotland with twelve companions in a wicker currach covered with leather. According to legend he first landed o
Kilrush is a coastal town in County Clare, Ireland. It is the name of a civil parish and an ecclesiastical parish in Roman Catholic Diocese of Killaloe, it is located near the mouth of the River Shannon in the south-west of the county. Kilrush is one of the listed Heritage Towns of Ireland; the area was classified as part of the West Clare Gaeltacht, an Irish-speaking community, until 1956. Kilrush has existed since the 16th Century. However, it was not until the 18th century; this development coincided with the succession of John Ormsby Vandeleur as the wealthiest landlord in the district. Of Dutch origin, the Vandeleur family was the most prominent landlord family in West Clare, they designed the layout of the town and many of the present day street names derive from Vandeleur family names. The Vandeleurs had settled in the area, as tenants to the Earl of Thomond on land at Ballynote, Kilrush, in about 1656. Giles, the first Vandeleur in the area was the father of the Rev. John Vandeleur, appointed prebend of Iniscathaigh in March 1687.
He was buried at Kilrush in 1727. In 1749, John Vandeleur, son of the Rev. John, purchased lands in West Clare to the value of £9,826.0.6, from the fortune, acquired as one of the Commissioners for applotting quit rents in Ireland John Ormsby Vandeleur built the large family home, Kilrush House in 1808. He owned much of Kilrush. With wealth achieved from a financially beneficial marriage and some political skulduggery, he decided to develop the town. A Scots businessman James Paterson, a gunboat lieutenant until 1802, assisted him in this project. Paterson entered the oats trade in west Clare and in 1802 he was given a site on the square from Vandeleur and erected a six-storey building; the Napoleonic Wars led to an improvement in agricultural prices. As Kilrush and the neighbouring countryside began to prosper, Hely Dutton reported in 1808 that the town was'rising fast into some consequence', he acknowledged Paterson's role as a'very active and intelligent inhabitant, of the utmost benefit to Kilrush, the adjoining counties'.
In 1812 Paterson went into the shipping business and by 1817 he had a steamboat operating between Limerick and Kilrush. The increasing popularity of Kilkee as a bathing resort brought many transit travellers to Kilrush. In 1837 Samuel Lewis described Kilrush as a seaport and post town; the main industries, chiefly for home consumption, were flannels and bundle cloth. The main trade was corn, pigs, agricultural products and hides. There were works for refining rock salt for domestic use, a tan-yard, a soap factory and a nail factory. Branches of the national and agricultural banks had been opened in the town and a constabulary police force was stationed there. A small prison was built in 1825 and a court house in 1831; however the famine years brought much hardship to Kilrush. Famine, evictions and cholera reduced the population of south-west Clare to such an extent that it never again attained its pre-famine numbers; this was vividly dramatised for radio in 1980. In the post-famine era, the Vandeleur name became synonymous with the worst of landlord evictions, with over 20,000 evicted in the Kilrush Union.
The Kilrush workhouse witnessed deaths. By that stage Hector Vandeleur had succeeded John Ormsby Vandeleur. Kilrush commercially survived the setbacks of the Great Famine to a great extent as a result of the arrival of the West Clare Railway towards the end of the 19th century, developed into a bustling market town. There is a 1500-year-old monastic settlement at Scattery Island in the Shannon estuary, about 15 minutes from Kilrush by boat; the settlement was founded by St. Senan, it features one of tallest round towers in Ireland. The old port of Kilrush is now home to a 120 berth marina with lock gate access to the Shannon Estuary and the Atlantic Ocean. An impressive walled garden on the grounds of the old Vandeleur estate can still be visited today, though Kilrush House was gutted by fire in the late 19th century and demolished in the 1970s due to safety hazard, it stood. Kilrush was the host venue for the 2013 National Famine Commemoration. Offshore resides a large pod of Bottlenose dolphins.
Dolphin-watching tour boats depart daily from the Kilrush marina, the Shannon Dolphin and Wildlife Foundation has an information centre nearby. Kilrush has been twinned with the town of Plouzané in Brittany, France since 1982. In 2015, Kilrush won an Entente Florale gold medal, a European-wide horticultural and environmental competition. Kilrush represented Ireland in the ‘Village’ category of the competition for population centres of less than 5,000 people; the town has an 18-hole golf course on the Ennis Road. The Western Yacht Club has in the last decades been rejuvenated, being one of the oldest yacht clubs in the world. Tennis and athletics are catered for at the Cooraclare Road complex; the rugby club is based on the Doonbeg Road. Kilrush Shamrocks GAA Club is located on the Killimer Road; the ground, Captain Tubridy Memorial Park is traditionally called "The Cricket Field", since it was used for that sport during the 19th century. The club has recorded 21 county titles. Kilrush is home to the West Clare Triathlon Club, a multi-discipline sports club, which trains and competes in the following sports – swimming and running.
Kilrush was the birthplace of a number of renowned sportspeople listed in the Notable People section below. Kilrush has two primary schools and one secondary
Ruadhán of Lorrha
For the literary figure of Ruadán, son of Bres and Brigid, see BrigidSt. Ruadán mac Fergusa Birn known Rowan, Roadan and Rodan, was an Irish Christian abbot who founded the monastery of Lorrha, near Terryglass, he was known for his prophesies. After his death, he was venerated as a saint and as one of the "Twelve Apostles of Ireland", his feast day is April 15. Ruadan was born in Tara in Leinster and was educated at Clonard, Co. Westmeath by St. Finnian, he is known as one of the Twelve Apostles of Ireland. He is said to have replaced St. Brendan at Lorrha, who preceded to cross the Shannon and set up his monastery at Clonfert, Co. Galway. Ruadan founded a monastic settlement there. A ditch or large mound would have been built around the settlement to keep animals in and intruders out, the outlines of which are still visible today. Life for the monks would have been tough but simple, rising early from their beds which would have consisted of rushes or straw placed on the bare ground, they would pray and fast between their domestic chores.
The settlement would have been self-sufficient in those days providing everything from food, clothing, to shelter. Villages and towns popped up around monastic settlements as trade and refuge attracted the local people, the origin of Lorrha village can be attributed to this. Ruadan is said to have died at the monastery of Lorrha on April 15, 584, his feast is kept on the anniversary of his death. His embassy in 556 to King Diarmait mac Cerbaill at Tara, is worked into a legend known as the "Curse of Tara", but the high-king continued to reside at Tara till his death in 564; the legend as to Tara's halls having been deserted after 564 is of comparatively late origin. Adomnan held a synod at Tara in 697. Diarmuid Mac Cerbhaill, had violated the sanctity of the church by taken a hostage from its protection; the downfall of Tara from a once thriving royal residence is credited to Ruadhan. Ruadán gave the prophecy. Diarmait had the beam cast into the sea. Diarmait asked his druids to find the manner of his death, they foretold that he would die of slaughter and burning, that the signs of his death would be a shirt grown from a single seed of flax and a mantle of wool from a single sheep, ale brewed from one seed of corn, bacon from a sow which had never farrowed.
On a circuit of Ireland, Diarmait comes to the hall of Banbán at Ráith Bec, there the fate of which he was warned comes to pass. The roof beam of Tara has been recovered from the sea by Banbán and set in his hall, the shirt and mantle and ale and bacon are duly produced for Diarmait. Diarmait goes to leave Banbán's hall, but Áed Dub, waiting at the door, strikes him down and sets fire to the hall. Diarmait is duly killed by the falling roof beam. Thus, all the prophecies are fulfilled; the bell of St. Ruadan was found in a well named after the Saint, is preserved in the British Museum; this well is situated across the road from the present day Church of Ireland. The Visio Tnugdali written c.1149 refers to Ruadhán as follows- Suddenly, Saint Ruadan approached them. He welcomed Tundale took him into his arms and hugged him.'My son, your arrival here is blessed indeed,' he said, they stood together.'From now onwards, while you live in the world you can look forward to a good end to your life. I was once your patron saint and in your worldly life you should be willing to show me some generosity and to kneel, as you well know, in my presence.
When Saint Ruadan had fallen silent, Tundale looked about him and saw Saint Patrick of Ireland, dressed in shining robes alongside many bishops decked out in their finest regalia. They were all joyful and there was no sound of any sighing! Among that blessed company Tundale could see four bishops, they were all good men. Another was Malachias O'Moore, who had become archbishop of Armagh after him and gave everything that he had to the poor, he founded a large number of churches and colleges, as many as forty-four in all, endowed them with land and rents and so allowed many men of religion to serve God devotedly, although he hardly retained enough for himself to live on. Aided Díarmata meic Cerbaill "The Violent Death of Diarmait mac Cerbaill", ed. and tr. S. H. O'Grady, Silva Gadelica. London, 1892. Vol. I: pp. 72–82. For details, visit Dan Wiley's Cycles of the Kings website. Aided Díarmata meic Cerbaill "The Violent Death of Diarmait mac Cerbaill". For details, visit Dan Wiley's Cycles of the Kings website.
Comlond Díarmata meic Cerbaill fri Rúadán "Díarmait mac Cerbaill's Contention with Rúadán". For details, visit Dan Wiley's Cycles of the Kings website. Betha Ruadhain, ed. Charles Plummer et al. Bethada Náem nÉrenn. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1922. Edition available online from CELT. Byrne, Francis John, Irish Kings and High-Kings. B. T. Batsford, London, 1973. ISBN 0-7134-5882-8 Grattan-Flood, W.. "St. Ruadhan". In Herbermann, Charles. Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company
Ciarán of Clonmacnoise
Saint Ciarán of Clonmacnoise born Ciarán mac an tSaeir ), was one of the Twelve Apostles of Ireland and the first abbot of Clonmacnoise. He is sometimes called Ciarán the Younger to distinguish him from the 5th-century Saint Ciarán the Elder, bishop of Osraige, his name produced many variant spellings, including Ceran and Queran. Ciarán was born in around 516 in Connacht, in Ireland, his father was a chariot maker. As a boy, Ciarán worked as a cattle herder, he was a student of Finian's at Clonard and in time became a teacher, himself. Columba of Iona said of Ciarán, “He was a lamp, blazing with the light of wisdom.” In about 534, he left Clonard for Inishmore where he studied under Enda of Aran, who ordained him a priest and advised him to build a church and monastery in the middle of Ireland. He travelled to Senan on Scattery Island. In 544, he settled in Clonmacnoise, where he founded the Monastery of Clonmacnoise with ten fellow companions; as abbot, he worked on the first buildings of the monastery.
His feast day is 9 September. Various legends are connected to St Ciarán. One of the most famous relates that it was his cow – which he took with him as payment when he went to Clonard and gave milk to all at the Abbey – which supplied the parchment for the Leobr na h'Uidre, Book of the Dun Cow, one of the oldest and most important Irish literary collections, compiled by a Clonmacnoise scribe in 1106. One story tells; when Finnian tested the class, Ciarán knew only the first half of the Gospel. The other students laughed and called him “Ciarán half-Matthew.” St Finnian silenced them and said, “Not Ciarán half-Matthew, but Ciarán half-Ireland, for he will have half the country and the rest of us will have the other half.” Another tale relates that as a student, a young fox would take his writings to his master, until it was old enough to eat his satchel. Yet another tale tells of the other Irish saints envying him to such a degree that every one of them prayed for his early death; the monastery at Clonmacnoise became one of the most important centres of learning and religious life in Ireland.
Unusually, the title of abbot – which included the title "Comarba of Saint Ciarán" – at the community was not hereditary, which reflected the humble origins of its founder. It managed to survive the plunderings of the Viking raids and the Anglo-Norman wars, was only destroyed during the Dissolution of the Monasteries, in 1552; the ruins still exist, remain a centre of civic and religious activity to this day. The treasures of Ciarán's shrine were dispersed throughout the Medieval era. A primary school in Hartstown, Dublin 15 is named after Saint Ciarán. Ciarán of Saigir Saint Cera Early Irish Christianity History of Roman Catholicism in Ireland List of Catholic saints Maolán Catholic Forum The story of St Ciaran's church of Clonmacnoise YouTube
Finnian of Clonard
Saint Finnian of Clonard – Finian, Fionán or Fionnán in Irish. The Twelve Apostles of Ireland studied under him. Saint Finnian of Clonard is considered one of the fathers of Irish monasticism. Finnian was born at the Kingdom of son of Findlog, his birthplace is supposed to have been near the present town of New Ross. He was a member of Clanna Rudhraighe from the Ulaid. Saint Abban baptised Finnian, at an early age he was placed under the care of Bishop Fortchern of Trim. According to some sources, Finnian studied for a time at the monastic centre of Martin of Tours in Gaul. Tours was noted for its austerity, he went to Wales and continued his studies at the monastery of Cadoc the Wise, at Llancarfan in Glamorgan. He remained there at prayer and study. Finnian made copies of St. Jerome's Vulgate. After a sojourn in Wales of thirty years, according to the Codex Salmanticensis, he returned to his native land. Although, as Hickey notes, "Thirty years away from Ireland seems too long when we consider Finnian's achievements in Ireland".
Finnian came first to Aghowle in County Wicklow at the foot of Sliabh Condala, where Oengus, the king of Leinster granted him a site. He founded a monastic community on Skellig Michael, off the coast of Kerry. From there, he went to St Brigid's monastery at Kildare. Around 520, he was at last led by an angel to Cluain Eraird on the River Boyne, which he was told would be the place of his resurrection. At Clonard Finnian built a little cell and a church of clay and wattle, entered on a life of study and prayer; the fame of his learning and sanctity soon spread, scholars of all ages flocked from every side to his monastic retreat. Finnian established a monastery modelled on the practices of Welsh monasteries, based on the traditions of the Desert Fathers and the study of Scripture; the rule of Clonard was known for its strictness and asceticism. The pupils of Finnian who became the founding fathers of monasteries are described as leaving Clonard bearing a book or crozier or some other object, suggesting that a working scriptorium and craft workshops were established at Clonard at an early date.
The Penitential of Finnian prescribes penances with a view to correcting sinful tendencies and cultivating the contrary virtue. The document shows wide learning and draws on the teaching of St John Cassian on overcoming the eight evil tendencies – gluttony, covetousness, dejection, accidie and pride. In the Office of St. Finnian it is stated that there were no fewer than 3,000 pupils getting instruction at one time in the school in the green fields of Clonard; the master excelled in exposition of the Sacred Scriptures, to this fact must be attributed the extraordinary popularity which his lectures enjoyed. Finnian's gift for teaching and his absolute dedication to the ascetic ideal, inspired a whole generation. Clonard drew students from various parts of Europe. Ciarán of Clonmacnoise and Columcille of Iona are among the many, they and many others took seeds of knowledge from Finnian's monastery at Clonard, planted them abroad with great success. Finnian died of the plague in 549. Hickey says: "If we consider his achievements in life, rather than the fabulous age attributed to him by his biographer, we may guess his age at death as sixty or sixty-five."
His burial-place is in his own church of Clonard. Finnian's sister, St. Regnach, was Abbess of Kilreynagh, near the present town of Banagher. Clonard became an important school because of the number of its students who went on to found other monasteries. For centuries after his death the school continued to be renowned as a seat of Scriptural learning, but it suffered at the hands of the Danes in the eleventh century, two Irishmen, O'Rorke of Breifney and Dermod McMurrough, helped to complete the work which the Northmen had begun; the relics of Finnian himself were enshrined at Clonard until 887, after which the shrine was destroyed. With the transference by the Norman Bishop of Rochfort, in 1206, of the See of Meath from Clonard to Trim, the glory of the former place departed forever. St Finnian of Clonard's feast-day is 12 December, first attested in a Spanish Martyrology of the 9th century. In years the monastery of Clonard came under the rule of the Uí Néill, came to share an abbot with either Kildare or Clonmacnoise.
Finnian is the patron saint of the Diocese of Meath. Hughes, Kathleen. "The Cult of St Finnian of Clonard from the Eighth to the Eleventh Century". Irish Historical Studies 9.33. Pp. 13–27. Lives of St Finnian of Clonard Irish Life, ed. Whitley Stokes, Lives of the Saints from the Book of Lismore. Oxford, 1890. Vol. 2. Latin Life in the Codex Salmanticensis, ed. J. De Smedt and C. De Backer, Acta Sanctorum Hiberniae ex codice Salmanticensi. Edinburgh et al. 1888. Cols 189–210. Latin Life in Bodleian, Rawlinson MS B 485, Rawlinson B 505. Unpublished. Elizabeth Hickey: The Irish life of Saint Finnian of Clonard: master of the saints of Ireland. With a commentary for the general reader. Hrsg.: Meath Archaeological and Historical Society. 1996, ISBN 978-0-9500332-7-3. Butler, Alban. Lives of the Saints, Vol. XII, 1866 The Venerable Finnian
Twelve Apostles of Ireland
The Twelve Apostles of Ireland were twelve early Irish monastic saints of the sixth century who studied under St Finian at his famous monastic school Clonard Abbey at Cluain-Eraird, now Clonard in County Meath. Clonard Abbey, situated on the River Boyne in modern County Meath was one of the main monastic schools in early Christian Ireland. During the 6th century, some of the most significant names in the history of Irish Christianity studied at the Clonard monastery, it is said that the average number of scholars under instruction at Clonard was 3,000. Twelve students who studied under St Finian became known as the "Twelve Apostles of Ireland"; this tradition is recorded in the 17th century based on older sources. The twelve saints are grouped together as such in the text Dá apstol décc na hÉrenn; the text is preserved in a manuscript belonging to Michael O'Clery, dated 1629. In the narrative, the twelve apostles of Ireland are gathered together for a feast in the house of St Finian, a magical flower appears in their midst.
It is decided that a voyage to the flower's homeland is to be undertaken by one of them, the choice of person being determined by casting lots. When, the lot falls on the old Brendan of Birr, his younger namesake Brendan moccu Altae goes in his stead. Brendan sets out with many companions and undergoes many adventures, much as related in Brendan's Life. Saint Ciarán of Saighir. In the Martyrology of Oengus, saint Ciarán of Saighir is not listed as one of the twelve apostles of Ireland, instead is replaced by Finnian of Clonard himself; the numbering of Finnian as one of the Twelve, not Ciarán of Saighir appears to be the older tradition, by which Ciarán was attached to pair with Ciarán of Clon. Saint Ciarán of Clonmacnoise, on the Shannon, in the barony of Garrycastle, County Offaly, died in the year 549. Saint Brendan of Birr, now Birr, County Offaly, he died on 29 November 571. Saint Brendan of Clonfert, he was the son of Finnloga, the patron saint of the see of Clonfert, in County Galway, was born in 484, died in 577 aged 94.
Saint Columba of Terryglass, abbot of Tir-da-glas, now Terryglass, in the barony of Lower Ormond, in the county of Tipperary, died in 552. Saint Columba was born in the year 521, died in the year 597, aged 75. Columba was an outstanding figure among the Gaelic missionary monks who some of his advocates claim introduced Christianity to the Kingdom of the Picts during the early medieval period. Saint Mobhí of Glasnevin, patron of Glasnaidhen, now Glasnevin, near Dublin, he died on 12 October 545 Saint Ruadháin of Lorrha, the patron of Lothra, now Lorrha, in County Tipperary. He died on 15 April 584. Saint Senan of Iniscathay off the southwest coast of County Clare. Saint Ninnidh the Saintly of Lough Erne, the Pious, the patron of the parish of Inis Muighe Samh, now Inismacsaint, in the north-west of County Fermanagh, he was alive in 530 but the year of his death is uncertain. Saint Laisrén mac Nad Froích, the son of Nadfraech, he was the brother of Aengus, the first Christian king of Munster and died in 564.
Saint Canice the patron of Aghaboe in County Laois, who died in 600 at the age of 84. Herbermann, Charles, ed.. "The Twelve Apostles of Erin". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company