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Elysium via Kinvara – 1875

Photo: Norma Scheibe

Photo: Norma Scheibe

Freeman’s Journal –  29 May 1875, page 4 

Celtic Voyages.

Ua Corra was a Connaught squire, not one of the jolly, fox hunting, rakish, ‘gentleman’ of more modern times, but a professor of the black art, who did not hesitate to hold direct communication with the devil, and to drag his wife into a partnership in  necromancy. Like the three witches in Macbeth, they had their vessels, and spells, and charms, and pit of Acheron.

And now about the caldron sing, 

Like elves and fairies in a ring, 

Enchanting all that you put in. 

These worthy parents had three sons in due time, who also surrendered themselves to the evil spirit. It was not confined to words. The three brothers at the head of a band of desperadoes, burned the churches and monasteries, and murdered their inmates. While their hands were still red with the blood of their victims, God, in a vision gave them a glimpse of the unspeakable torments of hell, which aroused them to a deep sense of their guilt, and to an earnest wish to repent. They entered the Magh Bile, where after expiating their crimes by a long course of penance, they resolved to make restitution, as far possible, for the ruin they had wrought.  Accordingly they set to work to restore the churches they had demolished.

While engaged on the church of St.Cainin at Ceaun Mara, now Kinvara— a little town pleasantly situated on the Bay of Galway – they witnessed a sunset of unusual magnificence. The bright orb, as it descended into the Atlantic, turned it into a stripe of gleaming gold. The gorgeous sight inspired the idea of an Elysium, and the enthusiastic brothers determined to go out under that distant horizon, float over those golden waters and be near the sun as it sank into the wave.

Having fitted up a bark they set sail from Kinvara and roamed over the mighty waters for many years. In their wanderings they came upon islands teeming with nature’s richest and rarest gifts.

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