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Corranrue – 1839/1599

Signature page from  Annals of the Four Masters University College Dublin Archives Department
Signature page from Annals of the Four Masters
University College Dublin Archives Department
From the Ordnance Survey Letters by John O’Donovan and Eugene Curry, 1839

Parish of Abbey

In this parish is also situated Corra an Rubha – Corranrue (i.e., the Causeway of Rue) in which stood a Castle belonging to the family of O’Heyne, formerly Chiefs of Hy-Fiachrach Aidhne. This Castle fell in the year 1755 at the very moment that the earthquake happened at Libson. The site of this Castle and a small part of its ruins (reduced to a formless heap) are still to be seen near the village of Corranrue, but I think it is on the Co. of Galway side of the boundary. It should be shown on the Ordnance Map. The present representative of the branch of the O’Heynes who lived in this Castle, as also on the Castle of Ballybranaghan at Kinvara, is John Heynes alias O’Heyne of the New Quay House, a very rich and sensible man, who is likely to purchase a considerable portion of Coill O’bFiachrach from De Bastro, the present proprietor, who is of French origin, and who, I am told wishes to sell out his estate in Connaught, with which he has, of course, little or no national sympathy. This gentleman descends from the last proprietor of Corranrue, thus :-

James, a man of Chieftan appearance and Herculean strength, aged 28.
John, now living at the New Quay, aged 55.
John, lived at Poulanisce.
Peter, the last who is said to have lived at Corranrue.

The senior branch of this once powerful family is Mr. Heynes of Ardrahan, who is well known in the country as Heynes the Process Server! This man is the senior representative of Guaire Aidhne, King of Connaught, so celebrated by the Irish bards as a Prince of unbounded hospitality. O’Heyne is senior to O’Shaughnessy. He was often chief of all the Territory of Hy-Fiachrach Aidhne, a Territory coextensive with the Diocese of Kilmacduagh, but O’Shaughnessy was never lord of more than Kinelea na h-Echtghe. O’Heyne built a beautiful little Monastery at Kilmacduagh but we do not find that O’Shaughnessy built any Church there and the reason is because he was never, until the reign of James I, but an Urriagh or sub-Chief to O’Heyne. O’Heyne is regarded to have been Chief of all the Hy-Fiachrach Aidhne at the following years :-

A.D. 1047. O’Heyne, Lord of Hy-Fiachrach Aidhne, died.
A.D. 1048. Maelfaal O’Heyne, Lord of Hy-Fiachrach, died.
A.D. 1055. Donnell Roe O’Brien was slain by O’Heyne, lord of Hy-Fiachrach Aidhne.
A.D. 1121. Torlogh O’Connor made a plundering excursion into Munster, and among other Chieftans, lost in a battle Hugh O’Heyne, Lord of the Hy-Fiachrach Aidhne.
A.D. 1180. Maurice O’Heyne, Lord of the Hy-Fiachrach Aidhne, was killed by the men of Munster.
A.D. 1225. Hugh O’Connor, presumptive King of Connaught, sent Felim his brother, and others of the Chiefs of his people and a great body of English soldiers to plunder Hy-Fiachrach Aidhne, the Country of Owen O’Heyne.
A.D. 1588. Owen Mantach, son of Edmond, son of Flann, son of Conor O’Heyne, Lord of Hy-Fiachrach Aidhne, died and his son, Hugh Boy, was elected to his place. Annals of the Four Masters.

The district of Rubha (Rue) in which the Castle of Corra an Rubha stood, is mentioned in the Annals of the Four Masters at the year 1599.

O’Donnell, after having plundered Thomond, proceeded on his way homewards across the chain of rough-headed mountains of Burren, and passing by Nua Chongbhail, Turlach, the Abbey of Corcumroe and Carcair na gCleireach, arrived at Rubha (Rue) in the west of Hy-Fiachrach Aidhne etc.



B.A., M.A.(Archaeology); Regional Tour Guide; Dip. Radio Media Tech; H.Dip. Computer Science.

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