The parish is in the diocese of Cloyne, and the rectory forms the corps of the prebend of Coole, in the cathedral of Cloyne, in the patronage of the Bishop: the tithes amount to £150. There is no church, but divine service is regularly performed in Coole Abbey mansion.
In the R. C. divisions the parish forms part of the union or district of Castle-Lyons, and has a small plain chapel at Coolagaun. In the demesne of Coole Abbey are some ruins of the ancient abbey, which gave name to the parish. It was founded in 1296, by the Barry family, by whom it was given to the Knights Templars, and was formerly the summer residence of the bishops of Cloyne. Near these ruins are some beautiful arches belonging to the old church, which are covered with evergreens. On the more elevated part of the demesne are some vestiges of the ancient castle of Coole, formerly belonging to the Earls of Desmond. In 1642 this fortress was surrendered to Condon of Ballydorgan, an insurgent leader, on his promising a safe conduct to the garrison, which consisted of thirty of Lord Barrymore's troopers; but they were all killed except one.
from Lewis's Topographical Dictionary of Ireland, 1837.
The transcription of the section for this parish from the National Gazetteer (1868), provided by Colin Hinson.
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