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KILKENNY WEST

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The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland - 1868

In 1868, the parish of Kilkenny West contained the following places:

"KILKENNY WEST, a parish in the barony of the same name, county Westmeath, province of Leinster, Ireland, 17 miles N.E. of Athlone. Ballytore is its post town. It is 4½ miles long by 3½ broad, and comprises loughs Ree and Mackeegan. The soil, which is light, rests upon a substratum of limestone and gravel. It contains the villages of Glassan and Auburn, the latter celebrated by Goldsmith, whose chair and reading-desk are still preserved at Auburn House. The interior is traversed by the road from Athlone to Ballymahon. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Meath, value £242. The church is ancient, having once belonged to a monastic establishment. There is a Wesleyan meeting-house. The Roman Catholic chapel is united to that of Tang in Noughaval. There are three day schools. In this parish are Auburn House, and several other mansions; also the ruins of a hospital for Crutched Friars, founded in the 13th century by the Dillon family. The castle of the Dillons, to whom the territory anciently belonged, was destroyed by Cromwell. The living was held by Goldsmith's father, and his brother Henry was curate.

"AUBURN, (or Lissoy), a village in the parish and barony of Kilkenny West, in the county of Westmeath, province of Leinster, Ireland, 8 miles to the N.E. of Athlone. Its name is rendered familiar to us as being the original of the "sweet Auburn" of Goldsmith's "Deserted Village." Its pleasant rural scenery still lies around it, but the old parsonage, where the poet's boyhood was spent, is in ruins, and his hawthorn tree, carried off bit by bit by ardent, if not wise, admirers, now enriches a thousand private cabinets and collections.

"GLASSAN, a post village in the parish and barony of Kilkenny West, county Westmeath, province of Leinster, Ireland, 4 miles N.E. of Athlone, on the road from thence to Ballymahon. Here is a dispensary within the Athlone Poor-law Union. It is also the seat of a police station, and petty sessions are held once a fortnight. Two corn mills are in operation."

"TOBERCLARE, a hamlet in the parish of Kilkenny West, barony of Rathconrath, county Westmeath, Ireland, near Ballymore."

 

[Transcribed from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland 1868]
by Colin Hinson ©2018