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County Kilkenny Ireland History

Barony of Fassadinin

The Gaelic sept of O'Brennan, chiefs of Ui Duach (Idough), are noted here at the time of the Norman arrival. The Ui Duach are described in Book of Leinster in an area called Airgetros in Maigib Raigne, which may have included much of north/northeastern co. Kilkenny and southwestern co. Laois. About that time this area was made into the medieval cantred of Odogh or Idogh, from Ui Duach. Despite the erection of a castle near Castlecomer, reputedly by William Marshall in the twelfth century, the Brennans ruled in this region with remarkable independence and persistence. It was not until 1635 the town and remaining Brennan lands were handed over to Sir Christopher Wandesforde.

The Kilkenny Journal of Archaeology (i. 240) describes various septs of the Ui Duach. Clann Amhlaibh (Clan Awly of Ui Duach) held the lands of Kyledonoghouekilly, Cruitt, Loyne, and Kilnabolyskeahanagh. Clann mic Conill held Kildergan alias Uskerty, Arderey, Cúlbán and Smittestown. Clann c. mhic Kelowe, alias Clann mhic Gillenanaomh held Croghtenely alias Achevonky, Monynerow and Clonyne. Clann Muirchertaigh held Rath-cally, Kilrobbin alias Rath Tomyne, Ballenchomoe, Ballyhomyne alias Dúnegid, Ballene alias Newtown, the Skeahanagh, Moy-howregh, Dromachedogher, Knockan na Shynagh, Dromgoly.

The area about Kilmenan, in the barony of Idogh, was possibly granted to Walter Purcell by William Marshal. Through apparent marriage of Geoffrey de Fraxino (de la Freyne) to one of Walter Purcells daughters, the Freney family are noted holding a quarter of a knights fee at Kilmenan in the feodary of 1247 and 1324.

In 1247 recorded names of those holding knights fees in the barony of Fassadinin included:
  • William de Drohull, 1 fee in Dumer [Dunmore]
  • John de Ebroicis (Devereux), part in Acheteyr [Donaghmore]
  • David de Rocheford, 1/2 fee in Kilmechar [Kilmacar].
  • Philip Oumer, or Dumer, 1 knight fee in Dysert and Closthau [Dysart].
  • William de sancto Leodegaro (St. Leger), 1/2 fee in Rosconnyl [Rosconnell].
  • Geoffrey de Fraxin[eta] (de la Freyne), 1/2 fee in land of Cumesethy [perhaps Foulksrath, parish of Collcraheen].
  • Geoffrey de Fraxino, 1/4 fee at Killeyan late of Walter Purcell [Kilmenan].

    In 1317 recorded names of those holding knights fees in the barony of Fassadinin included:
  • heir of William de Druhull, 1 fee in Dunmore & elsewhere.
  • Stephen de Oxon, or de Excestr (de Exeter), 2 knights' fees, part in Aghtayr [Donaghmore].
  • John Dounner, or John Duner, 1 knight fee in Dysare(?), Cloffkan(?), Lonlard or Lorlaid [Dysart].
  • John de Rocheford, 3/4 fee in Kilmeker & Balligauyn [Kilmacar].
  • heir of William de sancto Leodegaro (St. Leger), 1/2 fee in Rosconyl [Rosconnell].
  • Geoffrey de Rocheford, or heir of heir of Walter le Rocheford, et. al., 1 knight fee in Methil [Mothell].

    In 1324 recorded names of those holding knights fees in the barony of Fassadinin included:
  • Odo de la Freyne, 1/4 fee at Kylmannan [Kilmenan].

    The distribution of lands in the barony of Fassadinin circa 1640 shows the major landowners to be Christopher Wandesforde, the Earl of Ormond [Butler], Lord Mountgarret [Butler], followed by the Shortalls, Archers, Shees, Blanchfields, and a small section owned by the Brennans.

    The principal Irish names and their number in the 1659 census, Barony of Fassagh Deinin, included: Brohy, 10 ; Butler, 11 ; Brenan, 116 ; Birne, 31 ; Bergin, 08 ; Blanchvill and Blanchfield, 06 ; Cleere, 06 ; Dulany, 23 ; Duin & Duing, 08 ; Dowling, 09 ; Forstall, 07 ; Ferrell, 06 ; Horoghon (11) ( Hologhon (4), 15 ; Henessy, 09 ; Hicky, 09 ; Kenedy, 13 ; Kelly, 20 ; Kevanagh, 10 ; Kehoe, 05 ; Kenny, 05 ; Lallor & Lawlor, 12 ; Murphy, 16 ; Mollowny & Muldowny, 09 ; Mogher, 12 ; Nolan, 08 ; Neale, 06 ; Phelan, 31 ; Fitzpatrick, 08 ; Purcell, 09 ; Walsh, 12. The total number of Irish in the barony, 1688 ; the total number of English in the barony, 053.

    Further reference:
    Parishes and Townlands of Fassadinin
    Barony and Civil Parish Map of County Kilkenny

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