Mason's Parochial Survey, 1814-19

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Clare County Library


Union of Kilmanaheen, Kilasbuglenane, Kilmacreehy, Kileilagh and Kilmoon

XI. Natural Curiosities, Remarkable Occurrences, &c.

Natural Curiosities
On the top of Callen, a high mountain near the bog, where the large trees are usually found as mentioned in sec. I. may be seen several marine productions, such as shells, &c. All these may be reconciled to Mose’s History of the Creation, or to Count de Buffon’s Theory of the Earth, or to any other system.

Eminent Men. Hugh M’Curtin
With respect to eminent men, Hugh M’Curtin was born here about the year 1663. He wrote an Irish grammar, and two-thirds of an Irish dictionary, with an English translation to each, and died about the age of 70, while he was engaged in the latter. He is reported to have been diligent, laborious, and accurate in his researches into Irish antiquities; he lived some years in Paris, and there became professor of the Irish language. In the latter part of his life he returned to his native country, leaving some of his works in Paris and bringing some more along with him. He had, as the writer is informed, a most valuable collection of Irish books, which, after his death, got into different hands.

Andrew M’Curtin
Andrew M’Curtin, a distant relative of his, was younger than Hugh by 20 or 30 years. He was also a celebrated Irish historian and poet, and wrote some books, which after his death, met with the same fate that his cousin Hugh’s books did. A gentleman, a native of this country, well known by the name of Chevalier O’Gorman, procured nearly the entire of those and the other Irish books, in this and the adjacent counties of Kerry and Limerick, from the different persons in whose possession they were about 40 years ago, and had them all conveyed to France at that time, where it is supposed he left them. The chevalier returned to Ireland in the beginning of the French revolution, and died in this county about two years ago in indigent circumstances. He was married to the sister of the famous woman, long known by the name of Chevalier D’Eon. The writer knew O’Gorman very well, and he averred to him in the most solemn manner, that he did not know the imposition until it was found out in London, and that the utmost secrecy was observed in the transaction, and not committed to O’Gorman, even by his wife. He said that it was carried on for the purpose of entitling the Chevalier to an estate, bequeathed to the male heir of D’Eon, her father, and that she had the benefit of the bequest, until the discovery was made.

Doctor Lucas
In the townland of Ballingaddy in this union, the celebrated Doctor Lucas was born. The doctor’s great grandfather obtained a beneficial lease for ever of this townland, and some more ground adjoining it, from the ancestor of the present Lord Carrick. The doctor’s father and elder brother were improvident and sold their interest in this lease, which interest still holds and is now in other hands.

The only entry of any presentation to this union in the First Fruits’ Office, is as following:
“James Kenny, collated 15 Dec. 1775, vicarages of Kilmanaheen, Killaspuglenane, Kilmacreehy, Kileilagh, Kilmoon, n.t.”

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