Search billions of records on



Carlow County - Ireland Genealogical Projects (IGP TM)

What's in a Name?


Source: Myshall Parish Magazine 2006 p. 16

Townsland Irish Translation Meaning Acres Roods Perches
Aclare Ath Clair Ford of the Board or Plank 632 0 25
Ballaghmore Bealach Mor Great Road or Pass 473 1 13
Ballinacrea Baile na Cre Town of the Clay *home of the Trees* 351 3 16
Ballinree Baile an Ri Home of the King 810 0 25
Ballinrush Baile an Ruis Town of the Wood 549 2 2
Bealalaw Beal a Lagha Mouth or gorge of the Hill 'Ford of the Round Hill* 554 1 8
Booldurragh Buaile Dorcha Dark Booley (Milking Place) or Mountain Dairy *Black Marsh* 124 2 21
Cappawater CeapaBhaiteir Walton's Plot of Land 96 1 3
Carrignafecka Carraig na Feice Rock of the Pack *Rock of the Raven/Tooth shaped rock* 118 1 29
Clashganny Clais Gainimhe Sand Pit 175 3 8
Clonee (East) (West) Cluain Aodha Hugh's Meadow or Lawn 152 1 6
Coolasnaughta Cul a tSneachta Back of the Snow *Hill back of the Snow* 1239 2 11
Coolnasheegan Cul na Slogan Corner of Crows/ frequented by birds *Back of the Fairy Mounds* 108 2 19
Croanruss Cron Ros Brown Wood 107 2 16
Drumphea Droim Feidh Ridge of the Wood   'Steep Ridge of the Ravens'/'Deer* 433 2 19
Kilmaglush Cill Maige Glaise Church of the Green Plain *Wood of the Stream* 338 0 0
Knockbrack Cnoc Breac Speckled Hill 378 1 36
Knockdrumagh Cnoc Druimeach Hill of the Ridges or Backs *Hill of the thieves* 424 2 18
Knockindrane Cnocan Draoighin Hill of the Blackthorns or Sloe Bushes 738 3 37
Knocklonogad Cnoc Cluana Gad Hill of the Lawn of Gads or witches *Hill of the Marsh of witches/robbers* 111 1 9
Lismaconly Leas Nic Conghaile McConly's Fort 'Fort of Connolly* 158 3 11
Milltown Baile a Miuilin Town of the Mill 335 2 3
Myshall Maigh Iseal Low Plain 968 0 35
Raheenleigh Raitin Liath Grey Little Rath 'Little Grey Forts/ Little Grey Wood* 917 1 38
Raheenwood Coill Raitin Wood of the Raheen or Small Earthen Fort 'Little Fort of Wood* 227 1 34
Rathnageeragh Rath na gCaorac Fort of the Sheep 686 3 26
Rossacurra Ros a Cuiraigh Wood of the Moor *Wood of the Weir/Barony of Faith* 432 2 5
Roslee Ros Liath Grey Little Fort *Grey Peninsula* 485 2 11
Seskinamadra Seiscin na Madra Sedgy Marsh of the dogs or foxes 697 0 31
Shangarry Sean-garraidh Old Garden 679 1 30
Shean Siodhan A Fairy Mount 261 2 0
Straduff Srath Dubh Black Strath or Holm 'Black Meadow Land (with turf)* 196 2 32
Turtane Tuartan A hillock/isolated bank *High Bank* 210 3 29
Ullard More Abhall Gort Big Apple Garden/Orchard 284 3 1
Ullard Beg Abhall Gort Small Apple Garden/Orchard 181 0 33

What's In A Name?

Placenames are a vital part of our heritage. They preserve Folklore, Geography, History and Tradition. The vast majority of the placenames of our parish are gaelic in origin and were given to the various localities by our ancestors in the dim and distant past. Each placename had a special meaning and their roots often go deep in history. It is an absorbing and rewarding task to study and explain them and even the name of the smallest patch of ground or boreen or hill or stream is worth preserving and recording not alone for ourselves but for the benefit and enlightenment of generations to come. Some of the words in gaeilge have become grossly corrupted in the course of time by Anglicisation, by erroneous spelling and by faulty pronunciation while many of them were never written down but passed from mouth to ear down the generations.

The old townlands were often divided into quarters which were generally distinguished from one another by adjectives describing size, position, shape or quality of the land or by adding the names of the occupiers (PW Joyce Irish names of Places, Vol 1 Page 244 published Dublin 1869). There is evidence of this in our parish where there are 36 townlands in all - 34 distinct townlands with Clonee divided into Clonee East and West while Ullard is divided into Ullard More and Ullard Beg.

The reader will also notice from the table provided how the occupiers of various portions of land may have given the townland its name e.g. 'Cappawater' - 'Walton's plot of land' or 'Clonee' - 'Hugh's meadow'. Depending on the date and circumstances in some cases the landowners had sufficient influence with Government officials to have their own names substituted for the ancient ones. Some townlands have been submerged into adjoining townlands and examples of these in our parish are Tinnmogney (House of Mogney) which has been absorbed into Myshall itself and Killeavy (Church of the Mountain View) which is situated in Shangarry though that name is still attached to a field and sometimes the crossroads otherwise known as 'Doyle's Cross'. The meanings and Irish translations given in this article are all taken from a book called 'Place Names of County Carlow' written by Edward O’Toole 1937.

The extra meanings denoted by an asterisk are ones that have been used by locals and have come to the attention of the Magazine committee. Edward O’Toole was from Rathvilly and in the course of historical research he studied 'Name Books' which were preserved in the Ordnance Survey Department in the Phoenix Park. This list is not exhaustible and inevitably there has to be a measure of conjecture but everyone interested has a right to be heard. Hopefully this article will lead to discussion and perhaps the recording not only of the townlands but also of the various field names, bridges, gaps, hillocks, streams etc. before they are lost forever. The study of ancient maps also provide a wealth of knowledge on the names of places and how they have changed over the years. Myshall village itself does not exist on the map prepared in the year 1570 for Sir Peter Carew though Drumphea that is now part of the parish is marked spelled 'Drumffey'.

Map Of Sir William Petty 1685Myshall is clearly marked on the map of Sir William Petty of 1685 as are many other of the townslands as we know them today though the spelling is somewhat corrupt e.g. Turtane is spelled Thorton, Kilmaglush -Killengglis, Clonee - Clony, Bealalaw - Ballilah, Rathnageeragh - Rangeragh, etc. Taking everything into consideration it is remarkable the amount of information that has been preserved but if you have any further information on the townslands or their meanings or if you can add to this information please contact any member of the committee or email We would be delighted to hear from you.

Source: Myshall Parish Magazine 2006 p. 16

A-Z PLACE NAMES How well do you know Carlow?
The information contained in these pages is provided solely for the purpose of sharing with others researching their ancestors in Ireland.
2001 Ireland Genealogy Projects, IGP TM  By Pre-emptive Copyright - All rights reserved