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  • Co. Monaghan Ancient Parish of Donaghmoyne

Co. Monaghan Ancient Parish of Donaghmoyne


A parish in the barony Farney, 3 miles N.N.E. of Carrickmacross, County Monaghan, Ulster; length 7 miles, breadth 4, area 25,604 acres, Population in 1831, 14,070; in 1841, 15,110, houses 2,761. The district formerly constituted 2 parishes, East and West East Donaghmoyne, contains the demesnes of Rocksavage, Annageril and Calgogh and it has 6 small lakes and an advantageous and general interspersion of turbary. West Donaghmoyne contains the demesnes of Longfield, Rahans, and Vicarsdale and it has 2 extensive lakes and 3 smaller ones, but except on the west border, is deficient in bog for fuel. “The united parish”, says Sir Charles COOTE, “has both a grit and a limestone soil, is almost all under tillage and has some excellent flax lands; a great part is very fit for sheep-walk, but now under malting corn.”

The land in the western division, belonging to Mr SHIRLEY, is generally of an inferior description, but some in the eastern division belonging to the Marquis of Bath is of excellent quality. The road from Dublin to Monaghan passes northward through the interior. There is an old castle at Vicarsdale.
This parish is a vicarage and a separate benefice in the diocese of Clogher. Vicarial tithe composition £953 17s. 1d; glebe £61 19s. 10d. Gross income £1,015 16s. 11d. nett £902 12s. 1 3⁄4 d. Patron the diocesan. The incumbent holds also the benefice of Kilskery, in the diocese of Clogher. A curate has a salary of £75 and the use of a furnished house and a garden. The rectorial tithes are compounded for £476 18s. 5 1⁄2 d. and one moiety of them is impropriate in Mr MOORE and the other moiety is held by the vicar from the Crown.

The church was built in 1827 at the cost, including the churchyard wall, of £1,366 3s. 0 3⁄4d. of which £923 1s. 6 1⁄2 d. was borrowed from the late Board of First Fruits and the remainder raised by parochial assessment. Sittings 240, attendance 150. The Roman Catholic chapel at Taplagh is attended by 1,450; that at Lisdownan by 1,400; and that at Tullymaclinartin by 1,100; and in the Roman Catholic parochial arrangement these are mutually united. The Roman Catholic chapel at Drumcotton has an attendance of
850 and in the Roman Catholic parochial, arrangement is united to the chapel of Enniskeen. In 1834, the parishioners consisted of 470 Churchmen, 50 Presbyterians and 14,003 Roman Catholics, a Sunday school had on its books, 71 boys and 69 girls; a National school, which was temporarily suspended, had usually been attended by 50 children, and 13 daily schools in operation, one of which was salaried, with £7 from subscription, had on their books 472 boys and 175 girls. In 1840 a National school was salaried with £10 and had on its books 196 boys and 62 girls.

Historical Notices of the Donaghmoyne Church of Ireland

St Patricks Church, Donaghmoyne, Co. Monaghan Photograph & comment by Colin Boyle – Donaghmoyne Church of Ireland, County Monaghan. Built in 1827 in the site of a much older church. Closed in 1976 it now slowly decays to ruin. For more photographs see

The foundation of the church of Donaghmoyne that is the Dominica, or church of Maighin, or Moyne, is mentioned in the ‘Tripartite Life of St Patrick’ and also in the ‘Sixth Life of St. Patrick’, printed by Colgan, but the earliest notice of it is in the Book of Armagh. The Four Masters preserve one solitary notice relating to the church of Donaghmoyne, from which it appears, that the shrine of the celebrated St. Adamnan was preserved there in the 9th century: “A.D 830 Tuathal, son of Feradach, was carried away by the Danes, as was also the Shrine of Saint Adamnan from Domhtiach Maighen.”

The first notice in chronological order, subsequent to the Anglo Norman invasion, which relates to this church, is preserved in a transcript of part of the Register of Clogher, written as it appears about the year 1528 and is at present in the British Museum. It appears by a charter granted to the hospital of St. John the Baptist at Atherdee, or Ardee, by Roger Pipard the founder in 1207, that the new Hospital was endowed with the Church of the blessed Mary of Atherdee ,with all chapels lands possessions and ecclesiastical benefices belonging to the said Church, and also with the Church of Stickillen (County Louth) and the church of Douenachmain, with all chapels lands, rents, and possessions, belonging to the said churches & the right of patronage of all ecclesiastical benefices. This charter was confirmed by Edward III at Westminster, the 28th day of May in the 14th year of his reign.

In the 21st (year of reign) of Elizabeth, the possessions of St. John’s Hospital, at Ardee, were granted to Edward MOORE Esq. (afterwards Sir Edward) for 41 years; this lease was renewed in the 3rd year of James I. and in the 10th of the same reign (1612) they formed part of the extensive estate granted to Sir Gerald MOORE Kt. son of Sir Edward, to be held for ever as of the Castle of Dublin, in common soccage.Under this grant the Townland of Cappragh, and a moiety of the Tithes of Donaghmoyne, are still held under the Marquis of Drogheda, the representative of Sir Gerald MOORE. Recorded from Archbishop Usher’s visitation of Ulster, now preserved in the Library of Trinity College, Dublin, that in the year 1622, the Vicarage of Donaghmoyne was valued at £20 pr anm. “The Rectory is appropriate” in the words of this Record, “to the Abbeys of Lowth (Louth) and St. Johns The Ld. Moore & Ambrose ap-Hugh, levy 2 partes of all the tithes.”

The name of the Incumbent is unfortunately defaced; he was, it appears, non-resident. The Church was ruinous, and there was no house or glebe. This indeed was the general state of the parishes throughout the north of Ireland at this period; witness the Report of the Commissioners appointed by King James I. to enquire as to the estate of the Diocese of Clogher, “Three Churches alone standing and have need to be repaired, the rest are all ruined, and are downe to the grounded. One of these three churches appears to have been at Clones, where, according to a Patent of the 6th of James I. was “a thatched Church with stone walls, a cemetery, and other ruinous buildings.”

At what period the glebe called ” Vicarsdale”** was granted to the Vicar of Donaghmoyne, has not been ascertained; it was probably, however, not till about the year 1632, when Mr. James MONTGOMERY was appointed Vicar, through King James I., who was truly a nursing father to the Church, directed a King’s Letter as early as the 12th year of his reign, ” To take care that the Churches in Monaghan co. be furnished with glebes out of the lands that shall escheat to the Crown, at the rate of 4 tates at least to each.”
The value of the Vicarage of Donaghmoyne in 1634, according to a Visitation in the Registry of the Bishop of Clogher, was £50 per annum.

**The Townland of Tullenecross, now Glebe land, appears to have been granted by Viscount Weymouth, between 1692 and 1736.

The old Church of Donaghmoyne, rebuilt in the year 1827, was a poor and wretched structure without any architectural character and was probably erected subsequent to the Rebellion of 1641. The present Church is neat and convenient, it contains a Font, and Altar of marble removed from the former Church (which stood parallel with the present one). The said Altar, shaped much too like a side-board, bears the following inscription,

“The Gift of Lady Anne ACHESON 1734.”

Incumbents of Parish Donaghmoyne Church of Ireland
The following is a list of the Incumbents of this parish, extracted from the Registry of the Bishop of Clogher.

Donaghmoine a Vicarage.
Year of Admission, & Incumbent
1632. Ap. 24 James MONTGOMERY Killed at Carrickmacross by the Rebels, May 1, 1642.
1661 David McDAYSO
1661. Apr 27 Henry GODWIN
1663. Jany. 18 John SMITH
1704. Nov. 10 John JONES
1715 Stafford WARREN
1751 John BROWN
1759. Jany. 23 John BURGH
1766. Caulfield Burn CAULFIELD
1788. Apr. 12 William STOPFORD Died Sep. 5, 1809.
1809. Oct. 6 William STURROCH L.L. D. Resigned June 12, 1813.
1813. June 17 John Grey PORTER LL. B. Resigned, 1842.
1842. July 22 Robert Loftus TOTTENHAM A. M. Resigned 1873 now Chaplain of Florence
Henry Charles GROVES D.D. elected 29 April and instituted 7 May 1873

Church Plate belonging to the Parish Donaghmoyne Church of Ireland

On the Silver Flagon,
“The humble offerring of Mrs. Priscilla ARMATAGE for the use of the Parish of Donemaine.”

On the Silver Cup,
” The humble offering of Elizabeth WARREN for ye use of ye Parish Church of Donaghmain, 1729.”

On the Silver Plate for alms,
“The Gift of Mr Francis NOBLE and Mr Brabazon NOBLE for ye use of ye Parish Church of Donaghmain 1729.”

On the Silver Paten,
“Deo uni Trino et Sacris in Usum Parochii de Donamaine hanc Patinam D. D. D. Proenobilis Thomas Vicecomes WEYMOUTH Anno JEC 1756.”

A small Silver Cup and Paten intended for the use of the sick, and inscribed.
” The Gift of Anne Maria BURGH, To the Parish of Donamoine 1766.

The Parish Register commences in 1799
The Vestry Book in 1822

The northern portion of the Parish of Donaghmoyne and a part of that of Clontibret was erected into a perpetual Cure at Broomfield, (July 28, 1843.) The first stone of the new Church of Broomfield, dedicated to The Holy Trinity, was laid on the 15th of November, 1841.

St. Lasserius or Lasser, is one of the Patron Saints of the Parish of Donaghmoyne; his day is kept on the 18th of April, when the country people resort to his well, called Tubber Lasair, in the Townland of Aghavilla, adjoining to the Church land of Donaghmoyne. It would appear from the following extract from the copy of part of the Register of Clogher, before referred to, that St. Clera was the patroness of the Church of Donaghmoyne. St. Bridget has also, a well, here.

“Decanatus de Cluaynneois nuncupate ab ecclia sce Clere de Donaghmagn sorore spualibtor Macartini atq Tigernaci Epsm Ergallie nam beatus Tigernacus consecravit pdie virgini dando ecctiam, ac in honore ipsius Epi crux lapidea collocata e ibm ut pat intuentbsecctiam.”

On the eastern borders of the parish of Donaghmoyne in the townland of Killmurry, are some relics of an ancient church or chapel; there are, however, no sepulchral inscriptions, or any interesting architectural remains. In this same parish towards Innishkeen is an ancient burial ground called “Calderagh” there are yet appearances of a building and a rough hollow stone, which, it is possible, may have served for holy water. There are no tombs here and the fact of Calderagh having been a burying place rests on tradition alone.

Compiled & transcribed by Teena from The History of the County of Monaghan By Evelyn Philip Shirley

Parish Website for Donaghmoyne, Lisdoonan and Broomfield, Co. Monaghan