Vivian M. Timon
Caherlistrane is quite an enigma to anybody studying placenames or townlands in County Galway. Locally and throughout the county it is generally known as a parish; it is a sorting criterion for An Post and of course the GAA lays claim to the name and is well represented by The Caherlistrane GAA Club. Despite this, Caherlistrane does not feature as a parish in any Civil records. The Catholic Church lists the name as one of a number of names to describe the parish. Officially it names the parish as “The Catholic Parish of Donaghpatrick and Kilcoona”. The civil parishes of Galway, as listed on the Logainm.ie – the official government site, does not include or even mention Caherlistrane as a parish. It is listed as a townland of Donaghpatrick.
Caherlistrane as a townland of Donaghpatrick parish also presents a problem; it is spelled Caherlustraun in the English version on the Logainm.ie website. To make matters worse there are two spellings of the townland name in Irish, viz., Cathair Loistreáin and Cathair Loisgreáin. The latter was the Irish name of the townland some years ago and the road signage and the school names used this form; in fact, Donaghpatrick School was called Cathair Loisgreáin National School in the 1930’s. Laterally, Cathair Loistreáin is in common usage. To avoid any controversy over parish or townland names I have stuck rigidly to the parishes and townlands as listed on the Logainm.ie website.
Townlands of Donaghpatrick
I will now describe the 30 townlands of Donaghpatrick (See Map), giving their common (English) name, their official name in Irish, and the meaning of the Irish name. Added to this I will attempt to list the earlier attempts that were made to anglicize the townland name, fully accepting that the name given by the British Ordnance Survey in the 1800’s was and still is an anglicized name of the townland albeit O’Donovan, a staff member of the British Ordnance Survey at that time, was a fluent Gaelic speaker.
Abbeytown is a rather small townland extending to 106.59 hectares. It borders Ballinvoher, Bunnasillagh, Killamanagh and Lisdonagh to the east, and Carrowmore, Mirehill and Ralusk to the west. In an attempt to anglicise the townland name, it was referred to as the Abby of Killnamanagh in 1660 (BSD) and Ballanamonistragh in 1838/9 (OSNB). Finally, it officially got the name of Abbeytown and Baile Na Mainistreach by the British Ordnance Survey (O’ Donovan 1838/9).
Baile Na Mainistreach
Baile = Townland
Mainistir = Monastery
Baile na Mainistreach = Townland of the monastery or Abbeytown.
Ballinvoher is a very small townland measuring just 50.20 hectares. It borders Abbeytown and Ralusk to the west and Killamanagh and Bellanagarraun to the east. Earlier attempts to anglicise the townland name resulted in Ballinlover (Larkin, 1819) and Ballinwoher (OSNB, 1838/9). Even the current name, Ballinvoher, is a poor attempt to anglicise Baile an Bhóthair/Ballinvoher.
Baile an Bhóthair
Baile = Townland
Bóthar = Road
Baile an Bhóthair = has been badly anglicised as Ballinvoher.
Mirehill is also a medium-sized townland, measuring 124.16 hectares. It borders Abbeytown and Lisdonagh to the east, Largan to the west, Cloonee to the south and Carrowmore to the north. It was anglicised as Ballinlaban in 1618 before getting its official name as Baile an Lábáin/Mirehill by O’ Donovan (c 1838/9). There is an interesting story in the Shrule National Schools Collection as published by Duchas.ie which states that the townland got its name from a Myre family that once was rich but fell on hard times and had to sleep in the open air on a nearby hill, hence the name.
Baile an Lábáin
Baile = Townland
Lábáin = Mire/Mud
Baile an Lábáin = Townland of the mire.
Townlands of Donaghpatrick (Showing it’s 30 townlands)
This map shows Ballinapark as a townland; it is in fact a sub-townland of Derrymore.
Bawnmore is also a small townland, measuring 40.85 hectares. It borders on Caherlustraun to the north, Carrowconlaun to the south, Kildrum to the east and Oltore and Raheen to the west. It’s had various anglicised names in the past, viz., Ederamonine (CPR, 1618), Addardavane (BSD, 1660), and Ederdavone (ASE, 1670) until finally, O’ Donovan assigned it the name An Bán Mór/Bawnmore in 1838/9.
Bawnmore or Stonepark
An Bán Mór
Bán = Lea Ground
Mór = Big
An Bán Mór = The big lea-ground; I have no idea why it is called Stonepark.
Beagh Beg is a relatively big townland, measuring 147.18 hectares. It borders on Raheen and Ballintleva to the south, Beagh More to the north. Bellanagarraun, Bunnasillagh and Killamanagh to the west and Carheenard to the east. It’s had its fair share of attempts to give it an acceptable name beginning with Beitigh around 1390, Beaghe in 1570, The Beaghe, in 1574, and finally Behaghbegg in 1617. O’ Donovan eventually gave it its current name in 1838/9 as An Bheitheach Bheagh/Beagh Beg.
An Bheitheach Bheag
Beitheach = Birch wood
Beag = Small
An Bheitheach Bheag = The Small Birch Wood.
Beagh More is a very large townland extending to 934.39 hectares. It borders on a lot of townlands. It borders on Beagh Beg, Bellanagarraun, Corrilaun, Derrymore and Shancloon to the west, Ardrumkilla, Boadaun, Cloonaglasha and Gortnascullogue to the east, Caherkeeney and Carheenard to the south and Cloonbar to the north. Like its neighbouring townland, it had many assigned anglicised names until it was finally named An Bheitheach Mhór/Beagh More.
An Bheitheach Mhór
Beitheach = Birch Wood
Mór = Great or Big
An Bheitheach Mhór = The Big Birch Wood.
Bellanagarraun is a comparatively large townland extending to 217.87 hectares. It borders on nine other townlands. It borders on Ballinvoher, Ralusk and Tonacooleen to the west, Beagh Beg, Beagh More, Derrymore and Shancloon to the east, Corillaun to the north and Killamanagh to the south. It was named by the British Ordnance Survey in a number of different forms, viz., Bel ath na ngaran (1838/9 OSNB) and Beallanagurraun (OSNB, local, 1838/9). Finally, the townland got its present name Béal Átha na nGarrán/Bellanagarraun.
Béal Átha na nGarrán
Béal = Mouth
Áth = Ford
Garrán = Grove
Béal Átha na nGarrán = The mouth of the Ford of the Grove.
Bunnasillagh is a relatively small townland measuring 97.62 hectares. It borders on Abbeytown and Lisdonagh to the west, Beagh Beg and Raheen to the east, Donaghpatrick and Oltore to the south and Killamanagh to the north. The townland had a variety of names in the past, viz., Monesellaghe and Monisillagh in 1584, Monesella in c1660, Bunnasellagh in the 1830’s (OSNB) until finally O’ Donovan agreed its current names (Muine Saileach/Bunnasillagh).
Muine Saileach or Bún na Saileach
Muine/Bún = Thicket/Bottom
Saileach = Willow tree
Muine/Bún na Saileach = Thicket or Bottom of Willow Tree.
Caherakeeny is a reasonably large townland extending to 113.66 hectares. It is bordering on five other townlands. It borders on Castlehacket and Gortnascollogue to the east, Caheenard to the west, Beagh More to the north and Ballintleva to the south. It was named Caherakenna in 1819, Cather na hAona in 1838/9 by the British Ordnance Survey (OSNB), and even Mossfort (OSNB/PP). Finally, it got its current names viz., Cathair an Chaonaigh/Caherakeeny.
Cathair an Chaonaigh
Cathair = City/Fort
Caonaigh = Moss(es)
Cathair an Chaonaigh = Fort of the Moss(es).
Caherlustraun/Caherlistrane is a small townland measuring 63.25 hectares. It borders on five other townlands. It borders to the north on Ballintleva and Bawnmore, on Raheen to the west, Cave to the east and Kildrum to the south. There is some controversy as to its name in Irish. All of the essays in the Caherlustraun National School Collection as published by Duchas.ie use the spelling Cathair Loisgreáin as do the teachers in that school. In addition, all of the old road signs as erected by the Galway County Council used the spelling Cathair Loisgreáin. To add to this confusion, the name given to the townland in c 1670 was Kaherlostrane. In any event O’ Donovan pronounced the name of the townland as Caherloistreáin/Caherlustraun, meaning the Fort of the singed/burnt corn.
Cathair Loistreáin or Cathair Loisgreáin
Cathair = City/Fort
Loiscreáin = Fire for singeing corn
Loistreáin or Loisgreáin = Burnt/Singed Corn
Cathair Loistreáin = Fort of the Burnt/Singed Corn.
Carheenard is a fairly large townland extending to 111.49 hectares. On the other hand, it borders on just four other townlands. It borders on Ballintleva to the south, Beagh More to the north, Beagh Beg to the west and Caherakeeney to the east. Its name is somewhat confusing. The ‘een’ in the ‘Carheen’ part of the name would suggest smallness, whereas the Irish equivalent ‘Caithrín’ suggests expansion. The British Ordnance Survey didn’t address this contradiction and simply suggested the names, An Cairthrín Ard/Carheenard.
An Caithrín Ard
Caithrín = Expanse of a Fort
Ard = High
An Caithrín Ard = The High Expanse of a Fort.
Carrowconlaun is a small townland measuring 57.56 hectares. On the other hand, it borders on quite a lot of other townlands. It borders on Bawnmore to the north, Bothercuill to the south, Oltore, and Donaghpatrick to the west and Kildrum and Kilwullaun/Killvolan to the east. This townland had many anglicised names in the past. It was called Carrowcunlane in 1585 (CBC), Carrowconlan in 1617, and the strange name of Carrooneechunlaun in 1838/9 (ONBS Local). Finally, it got the name Ceathrú Uí Chonalláin/Carrowconlaun by O’ Donovan.
Ceathrú Uí Chonalláin
Ceathrú = Quarterland
Uí Chonalláin = Member of the Conalláin Tribe
Ceathrú Uí Chonalláin = Quarter of the Conalláin Tribe.
Carrowmore is a small townland but still, it borders on seven other townlands. The townland borders on Abbeytown, Ralusk, and Tonacooleen to the east, Joyce’s Park, Largan, and Shrulegrove to the west and Mirehill to the south. Ironically, attempts to anglicise this townland haven’t resulted in strange names as other townlands have been given. It was referred to as Carrowmore in 1610 and again in 1660 (BSD). It was finally christened An Cheatrú Mhór/Carrowmore by O’ Donovan c 1838/9.
An Cheatrú Mhór
Ceathrú = Quarter
Mór = Big
An Cheatrú Mhór = The Big Quarter.
Kildrum is an average-sized townland measuring 78.13 hectares. This townland borders on five other townlands. It borders on Bawnmore and Carrowconlaun to the west, Cave to the east, Caherlustraun to the north and Kilwullaun/Killvolan to the south. It had its fair share of anglicisation names, viz., Cen Droma in the 1400’s, Kildroma in 1610, and Killdrowma in 1617. Finally, O’Donovan titled it Cill Droma/Kildrum in c1838/9.
Cill = Church
Droim (Drom) = Ridge
Cill Droma = The Church of the Ridge.
Kilwullaun/Killvolan is a medium-sized townland measuring 76.56 hectares. It is a townland that has been given an anglicised name that bears no resemblance to the original Gaelic name, viz., Cill Mhothlan. Over the centuries, it has been given some strange names such as Carowkeilekillmoullan in 1618 or Killvolin in c 1660 (BSD). O’Donovan (1838/9) gave this townland the Irish name of Cill Multhain, meaning Multan’s Church. On the other hand, Logainm.ie has given it the Gaelic name as Cill Mhothlan/Kilwullaun; it is now generally known as Killvolan.
Cill = Church
Mothlan = Multan
Cill Mhothlan = Multan’s Church.
Killamanagh is a comparatively small townland. It borders on Abbeytown and Ballinvoher to the west, Beagh Beg to the east, Bellanagauraun to the north, and Bunnasillagh to the south. As a townland that was home to a community of monks for a long time inevitably there were many attempts to anglicise its name. Ironically, the first recorded name assigned to the townland in c1390 was literally correct in Gaelic as Cill Na Manach. Subsequent names were increasingly wide of the mark beginning with Cill Manach (c 1400), Kilnemannagh (1585) and Killnemanach (1610). In circa 1838, O’Donovan named the townland Cill Na Manach/Killamanagh.
Cill Na Manach
Cill = Church
Manach = Monk
Cill Na Manach = Church of the Monks.
Corillaun is a medium-sized townland extending to 97.65 hectares. It borders on six townlands, viz., Beagh More, Bellangarraun and Shancloon to the east, Dalgan Demesne and Tonacooleen to the west, and Derrymore to the north. The Ordnance Survey assigned it the name Cor oileán (OSNB) and O’Donovan titled it Crane Island. Subsequently, Logainm. ie named it An Corroileán/Corillaun.
Corr = Crane
Oileán = Island
An Corroileán = Crane-Island.
Derrymore is a relatively large townland extending to 160.82 hectares. It borders on six townlands. It borders on Beagh More, Bellangarraun and Shancloon to the east, Dalgan Demesne to the west, Brackloon to the north and Corillaun to the south. Ballinapark is a sub-townland of Derrymore albeit it appears on the map as a townland. Derrymore has had its share of anglicised names, viz., Dirravor in 1819 (Larkin), Derrywore in 1838/9 (OSNB) and Derryvore (OSNB Local). Finally, it was officially named Doire Mór/Derrymore.
Doire = Oak Wood
Mór = Big
Doire Mór = Big Oak Wood.
Donaghpatrick is a large townland measuring 261.40 hectares. Consequently, it borders on a lot of townlands. It borders on Bohercuill, Carrowconlaun and Gortnaporia to the east, Gortarica and Lisdonagh to the west, Bunnasillagh and Oltore to the north and Crossursa to the south. This townland had its fair share of name changes and anglicisation attempts. It was first called Domnaig Pátraic in circa 954. It was later named Donapatrick in circa 1660 (BSD) and Donogh-Patrick in c 1670 (ASE). The townland was finally named as Domhnach Pádraig/Donaghpatrick in circa 1838/9 by O’Donovan’s Ordnance Survey team.
Domhnach = Church
Pádraig = Patrick
Domhnach Pádraig = Patrick’s Church.
Gortnascullogue is a small townland bordering on just four townlands. It borders on Ardrumkilla to the east, Caherakeeny to the west, Beagh More to the north and Castlehacket to the south. It was largely ignored in early attempts to anglicise the name of the townland with just one attempt in c 1660 when it was named Gortanabba (BSD). The first attempt in 1838/9 by the British Ordnance Survey named the townland Gortnaskullogue (OSNB) but O’Donovan later named it as Gort na Scológ/Gortnascullogue.
Gort na Scológ
Gort = Field
Scológ = Farm servant
Gort na Scológ = A Farm servant’s field.
Joyce’s Park is a very small townland, and it has a rather peculiar shape; it is long and narrow as if it was an afterthought to designate it a townland in the first place. It covers a mere 28.46 hectares. On the other hand, it borders on five townlands. It borders on Carrowmore to the east, Cloonbanaun to the west, Largan to the south and both Shrule and Shrulegrove to the north. There haven’t been any attempts to anglicize the name of this townland that I can find other than the name designated by The British Ordnance Survey in 1838/9 (OSNB), which gave it the name(s) Páirc an tSeoighigh/Joyce’s Park.
Páirc an tSeoighigh
Páirc = Field
Seoighigh = Joyce
Páirc an tSeoighigh = Joyce’s Field.
Largan is a relatively large townland extending to 242.38 hectares. As a large townland it borders on several other townlands. It borders on Bunneconeen, Cloonee and Cloonnavarnogue to the south, Cloonbanaun and Joyce’s Park to the north, Carrowmore and Mirehill to the east and Cullach, Kinlough and Tonroe to the west. There were two attempts to anglicise this townland before O’ Donovan gave it its present name, viz., Largo or Largon in c. 1670 (ASE) and Larragan in 1819 (Larkin). Eventually, O’ Donovan assigned it the name(s) An Leargan/Leargan in c. 1838/9.
Leargain = Sloping Hillside
An Leargain = The Sloping Hillside.
Lisdonagh is a medium sized townland measuring 104.73 hectares. It borders on seven other townlands. It borders on Abbeytown and Mirehill to the north, Gortarica and Donaghpatrick to the south, Oltore and Bunnasillagh to the east and Cloonee to the west. I have not found any attempts to anglicize the name of this townland prior to the British Ordnance Survey assigning the name(s) Lios Donncha/Lisdonagh in 1838/9 (OSNB).
Lios = Ring fort
Donncha = Donough
Lios Donncha = Donough’s Ring fort.
Oltore is a medium sized townland extending to 78.00 hectares. It borders on three townlands on its eastern boundary, viz., Bawnmore, Carrowconlaun and Raheen. It borders on Bunnasillagh, Donaghpatrick and Lisdonagh to the west. This townland has had its fair share of anglicised names. It was recorded as Ouoloyr in 1591, as Oouldtarte in 1660 (BSD), as Oultore in c. 1670 (ASE) and as Ultore in 1819 (Larkin). Finally, the townland was named by The British Ordnance Survey (O’Donovan, 1838/9) as Olltóir/Oltore.
Oll = Great
Tóir = Chase
Olltóir = The Great Chase.
Pollinahallia is quite a large townland measuring 299.85 hectares. It borders seven townlands viz., Biggera Beg, Caltragh and Carheens to the east, Cave to the north, Fearagha to the south, and Bohercuill and Killwullaun to the west. It was anglicised on a number of occasions. It was designated Pollnahally in 1617, Pollnahallie one year later (1618, CPR) and Pollnehalle in c. 1660 (BSD). Finally, it was named by The Ordnance Survey (O’Donovan, 1838/9) as Poll na hAille/Pollinahallia.
Poll na hAille
Poll = Hole
Aill = Cliff
Poll na hAille = Hole of the Cliff.
Raheen is a medium sized townland extending to 102.21 hectares. It has boundaries with six other townlands. The townland borders on Ballintleva, Bawnmore and Caherlustraun to the east, Beagh Beg to the north and Oltore to the south, and Bunnasillagh to the west. There were many different attempts to anglicise the name of this townland beginning with Rehennah in c. 1660 followed by Rehengallan (BSD). In c.1670 it was named Raheenagh and Rathmegullin (ASE). In 1838/9, O’Donovan working for the British Ordnance Survey named the townland An Ráithin/Raheen.
Ráithín = Small Ringfort
An Ráithín = The small Ringfort.
Ralusk is a very small townland measuring just 29.87 hectares. On the other hand, it has boundaries with five other townlands. It borders with Abbeytown and Carrowmore on its western boundary, it borders on Bellanagarraun to the east, Ballinvoher to the south and Tonacooleen to the north. The British Ordnance Survey first gave this townland the name Rath Loisgthe, 1838/9 (OSNB) but O’Donovan changed the name to Ráth Lusca/Ralusk
Ráth = Fort
Lusca = Cave
Ráth Lusca = The Fort of the Cave.
Shancloon is a relatively large townland measuring 189.48 hectares. It has boundaries with several townlands. It borders Beagh More and Cloonbar to the east, Brackloon and Derrymore to the west, Cloonsheen to the north and Bellanagauraun and Corillaun to the south. There were two very reasonable attempts to put an English name on this townland, viz., Shancloon (Larkin 1819) and Shaughloon (ONBS, 1838/9) before O’Donovan (1838/9) finalised the townland name(s) as An tSeanchluain/Sancloon.
Sean = Old
Cluain = Meadow
An tSeanchluain = The Old Meadow.
Shrulegrove is a medium sized townland extending to 87.10 hectares. It is bounded by five neighbouring townlands, viz., Joyce’s Park and Shrule to the west, Tonacooleen to the east, Carrowmore to the south and Dalgan Demesne to the north. For a small town it has had a lot of English names assigned to it. For example, in 1619 the townland was anglicised as Shrohill (CPR), a year later it was referred to as Shruher (CPR). A mere six years later still it was referred to as Shrower (Inq.). The British Ordnance Survey’s first attempt resulted in naming the townland Srufuil (ONSB 1838/9) until O’Donovan corrected the record and named it Sruthair/Shrulegrove.
Sruthair = (Rapid) Stream
Tonacooleen is quite a large townland measuring 152.84 hectares. It boundaries six other townlands, viz., Bellanagarraun, Corrilaun and Ralusk to the east. It borders Carrowmore to the south and Dalgan Demense to the north, and Shrulegrove to the west. There were many attempts to finalise (anglicise) its name such as Cullynie near Killnemannagh in 1610 (CPR) followed by Cooleene in c. 1660 (BSD) and Thoneachooleen in 1838/9 (OSNB). O’Donovan corrected the British Ordnance Survey record and named the townland Tóin an Chúilín/Tonacooleen.
Tóin an Chúilín
Tóin = Bottom (land)
Cúilín = Little Field
Tóin an Chúilín = Bottom of the Little Field.