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February 27, 2006


THE ancient oak on Drumcree under which St. Brigid built her cell or oratory remained standing to the end of the 10th century, and it was held in such veneration that no profane hand dare touch it with a weapon. At the invitation of bishops, the Saint made many journeys through Ireland founding convents, so that her memory is warmly cherished in all parts of the country. The Irish people called their daughters by her sweet name. The wells at which she drank and prayed became blessed wells. The places she visited were forever after under her special protection, and so all over Ireland we have Toberbrides, Rathbrides, Kilbrides. Pilgrims too, lay and cleric, flocked to Kildare by many roads, and St. Brigid was noted for her hospitality to them all. Besides Kildare town on the Green road, there is a large pond or Loch called Loch­minane, the formation of which is thus accounted for in the Feilire Aenguis in the Leabhar Breac: “Eighteen bishops came to Brigid from Hui-Brinin Cualand and from Telach na n-espoc toLoch Lemnachta, beside Kildare to the north. So Brigid asked her cook Blathnait whether she had food, and she said she had none. And Brigid was embarrassed, so the angel said the cows should be milked again. And Brigid milked them, and they filled the tubs, and they would have filled all the vessels of Leinster, and the milk came over the vessels, and made a loch thereof. Hence the name Loch Lemnachta, lake of New Milk.”
On the roadside at Tully Gardens there is a holy well dedicated to St. Brigid. It is shown on the 1837 Ordnance map, as well as pointed out by tradition. It was walled in by the Board of Works, and was used by the townspeople before the water from St. John’s Well in Tully East was piped to the town in the early eighties of the last century. From time immemorial too, Brallistown, or as it is called locally the Greallachs, in the west of the same townland has been a place of pilgrimage as being associated with St. Brigid.
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         Greallach means miry marshy ground on which cows stand. Tradition states that St. Brigid kept her cow here, prayed here, and made butter beside the stream. Her well is pointed out and her “Shoes,” or as they are also called her “Cows” are objects of veneration. These are two granite stones, 32 inches by 12 inches, hollowed out so that the stream water passes through them. According to the flow of water through each of them at certain times of the year, it is said that one cow is “going dry” or is dry, and the other is “a new-milch cow,” or “in full milk.” Owing to the cleaning of the larger stream and the stream from the well, the position of the Shoes or Cows has varied, from the mouth of the well-stream where they seem to have been sixty-two years ago, to a place between the mound and the whitethorn bush. They seem to have been placed in the latter position over thirty years ago, and to have remained here till the Shrines were renovated by the people of Tully in the autumn of 1952. Pilgrims have always prayed on the Mound beside the stream. At noon on Sunday, St. Brigid’s Day, 1953, the Parish Priest blessed St. Brigid’s roadside well at Tully and then proceeding to the Greallachs, in the presence of several hundred parish­ioners, he blessed St. Brigid’s Well and her “Cows” or “Shoes.” All then joined in the recitation of the Rosary at the seven station-stones, and in a hymn to St. Brigid.

Chapter 7 of the 1953 An Tostal  Programme was dedicated to the Shrines of St. Brigid. There is an interesting explanation of the meaning of the name of the townland of Loughminane and an explanation of the meaning of 'St. Brigid's Shoes.'

Posted by mariocorrigan at 10:11 PM

February 18, 2006


Leinster Leader 27/1/1906 p. 5.
District Doings.
            A team representing the newly-formed Kildare Rugby Football Club met a Carlow team at Killeshin, Carlow, on Monday. Carlow won by 2 goals (one dropped) and one try to nil.
            Buxton, the well-known Curragh jockey, played for Kildare, and played well. During the progress of the match, Fitzgibbon, one of the Carlow players, had the misfortune to break his left forearm. He was attended soon afterwards by Dr. W. O’Meara.
Kildare Observer 27/1/1906
Rugby Football.
Kildare v. Carlow.
This match was played on Monday at Carlow, and resulted in a win for the home team. Bailey and Skinner played well for Carlow, as did Quinlain, Cosgrove and Lesmond for Kildare. Score:-Carlow 1 goal, 1 dropped goal and 1 try (12 points); Kildare, nil.
Leinster Leader 17/2/1906 p. 5.
District Doings.
In Kildare.
The Phoenix Rugby Club will travel to Kildare on Sunday to play the local team. Play will commence at 2.30 at Hawk Field, Kildare.
[There is a townland named Hawkfield near Newbridge, Co. Kildare but this is probably a reference to an actual field near Hawk Hill on the Monasterevin Road, Kildare. This was the property which was loaned for GAA matches by Mr. D. Flood. This is borne out in the next report.
A report of one such football match is carried on this site from the Leinster Leader 17 August 1895 p. 8, KILDARE (SONS OF ST. BRIGID) v ATHGARVAN – Mario Corrigan]
Leinster Leader 17/2/1906 p. 5.
District Doings.
In Kildare.
            A very large number attended at Kildare on Sunday last to witness the Rugby match between the local team and the Phoenix (Dublin) [team? – sic]. Something in the neighbourhood of 1,000 spectators were on the field, and following a very interesting and close game, the result meant a victory for the home team by a try to nil. Mr. Hazlett was fortunate in the last few moments to secure the try. The Dublin team were very hospitably entertained at the Railway Hotel after the match, and from what we can learn their outing was all round an enjoyable one.
            The one following the other in Kildare on Sunday-G.A.A. after Rugby, and in the same field. The Rugby match being over, the Monasterevan Fizzers lined up to meet the Kildare Shamrocks, and after a hard and fast tussle, which would remind one of the old prowess of the Fizzers and Blunts, the score was 3 points each, which will mean a replay.
[Blunts were named after a local landlord – Wilfred Scawen Blunt – and if memory serves were one of the forerunners of Ellsitown GFC – original spelling and grammar maintained, indicated by [sic] - Mario Corrigan]
Kildare Observer 24/2/1906
Rugby Football Fixture.
            On Thursday next, March 1st, a team representing Naas will play Kildare on the grounds of the Naas Hockey Club at 3.30 sharp.
Kildare Observer 3/3/1906
Rugby Football.
Naas v. Kildare.
            Rugby football matches are few and far between nowadays in Naas, where, some fifteen years agothere was aflourishing club. We are safe in sayingthat since the time mentioned there has been, but one match, and that was about six years ago against St. Andrew’s College. Let us hope that the game will not be allowed to lie dormant for another six years—there is plenty of young material, and judging by their display they would be able to hold their own with most ordinary clubs. The game was revived on Thursday, when a team representing Naas played Kildare. Unfortunately the evening was most un­suitable, heavydrizzling rain falling throughout. There was a large number of spectators, who were not lax in encouraging any points of merit during the game. Kildare won the toss and played with a slight breeze in their favour for the first half, in which it is only fair to say that the home side had much the best, and it was very hard luck that prevented Carter from scoring. At half time the score sheet was still unmarked, and although both sides tried hard it remained so to the finish, the game ending in a scoreless draw. Kildare played two men short. The forwards on both sides played a good game, and to their lot fell the greater portion of the game on account of the soft state of the ground. Telford and Lesmonde were the best for­wardsfor Kildare, while in the back division Murphy wan excellent, and H Buxton displayed as much tact with hands and head as if handling one of the Kilcumney “good things” [. – sic] In the Naasteam forward division Gibson displayed all his old prowess. Tully and Kennedy were also good. Of the backs Carter played a fine game,and none the less brilliant were Wallace, Smith, and King.
The followingwere the teams:-
Kildare—E B Gray, full; J Murphy, J Hazlett, F Bourke, and W Watson, three-quarter; H Buxton and T Bourke, halves; M. J. Egan, Lesmond, Kenny, Telford, J Cosgrove andCochrane, forwards.
Naas—B A King, full; P Cahill, B Francis, R J Smith, andJ Tracy, three—quarters;Robert Carter and TWallace, halves; T R Gibson, J J Tully, M Linnane, —Despard, E Kennedy, — Davenport, S Morrison, and J Robinson, forwards.
Dr Morrissey, Naas, refereed.
Leinster Leader 3/3/1906
Rugby Football.
Naas v. Kildare.
            The Kildare Rugby Football Team travelled to Naas on Thursday and played a friendly match with the newly formed Naas team. The day was a most unsuitable one for football, a thick drizzling mist falling throughout the day, with the result that the hockey grounds, where the game was played, was very much on the soft side. When the teams lined out at 4 o’clock there was a fairly good attendance of spectators present. Kildare won the toss, and in the first half played with a slight breeze in their favour. The game throughout was of a rough and tumble character, and the proceedings were only enlivened on a couple of occasions, when the spectators were treated to a good display of rushing tactics on the part of the home team. The Kildare team were a more evenly balanced lot, but they played the greater part of the game with two men short. When the whistle went at full time no score had been registered for either side.
The followingwere the teams:-
Kildare—Full, Gray; Murphy, Hazlett, F. Burke, and Watson, three-quarters; Buxton and T. Bourke, halves; Egan, Desmond, Kenny, Telford, Cosgrave andCochrane, forwards.
Naas—King, full; Cahill, McQuaid, Smith, and Tracey, three-quarters;Carter and Wallace, halves; Gibson, Tully, Linnane, Despard, Kennedy, Davenport, Morrison, and Robinson, forwards.
Dr. Morrissey, Naas, refereed.
[Kildare Observer has for the Kildare team - Lesmond or Lesmonde for Desmond and Cosgrove for Cosgrave; for Naas team, B. Francis for McQuaid and Tracy for Tracey
Kildare Observer 3 March 1906
During the week Dermot O'Mahony asked me about a match played between the newly formed Rugby Clubs in Kildare and Naas in 1906. After a little research I found a few articles of interest re. the match and the Kildare Town Rugby Football Club.

Posted by mariocorrigan at 11:36 PM

February 14, 2006


From the earliest times the Church aimed at providing suitable education for aspirants to the priesthood, generally in a school under the personal supervision of the bishop. Such a school was established at Armagh by St. Patrick himself, and many others were founded all over Ireland. Angles and Saxons and students from other countries came in large numbers across the sea. [, - sic] to enjoy what was then recognised as the finest education Europe could offer, and were supplied gratuitously with food, books and tuition, a fact to which Venerable Bede bears express testimony. At Kildare a school of renown came into being, begun by St. Brigid herself. St. Conlaeth founded at Kildare a school of metal work and decorative art in which chalices, patens, bells and shrines for his churches and monasteries were made. Illumination of MSS, sculp­ture and architectural ornamentation were carried to great perfection. Notwithstanding the ravages of the Danes our annals record the deaths of many Professors of the School of Kildare. Cosgrach, the Ard-Ollamh, died in 1041. Cobthac, another Professor of Kildare, who died in 1069, was noted for his universal knowledge of ecclesias­tical discipline. Ferdomhnach the blind Professor of Kildare, who died in 1110, was eminently skilled in Holy Scriptures. Thus in spite of Norse and Danish ravages, Kildare, a sacred city set on a hill, flourished as a centre of light and learning until the coming of the Normans.
Inside Front Cover72dpi.jpg
Inside Front Cover of An Tostal Programme 1953
(spellings and grammar retained as in original, indicated by - [sic] - square brackets and sic  )
Chapter 6 of the An Tostal Programme of 1953 explores the history of Kildare Town as an ancient centre of learning.

Posted by mariocorrigan at 08:05 PM


January 30 2006 - Aras Bhride (The Parish Centre), Kildare.

Old and new came together recently as the Grey Abbey Conservation Project received over €400 from members of the former Grey Abbey Committee. This Committee had overseen the original clean-up of the Abbey and the mounting of the plaque on the outside wall of the graveyard on Grey Abbey Road. We would like to praise and thank them for their hard work and commitment and for the generous donation of their remainingcommittee funds.

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Left to right: - Current Secretary, Margie Sheridan, Chairman, Mario Corrigan, and Treasurer, Ger Kelly being presented with a cheque for over €400 by former Committee members Michael Hughes and Elaine Murphy.

Posted by mariocorrigan at 07:49 PM

February 02, 2006


Before the crowd.jpg Sculptor & Band playing.jpg Davy Scott & Band.jpg Brian Swan, Sculptor, Joan Conlan.jpg General View before crowd.jpg Fionnuala etc.jpg Podium closeup dignatories.JPG Lorraine Nolan.jpg Podium closeup.jpg Dr & Pres McAleese & Mayor.jpg

Pres Speech best.jpg

Posted by mariocorrigan at 10:00 PM

February 01, 2006


Re-kindling the Flame

St. Brigid's Day, 1st Feb. 2006

1 General Shot.jpg 1 A Musicians.jpg 1 B Musicians closeup.jpg 2 Wave to crowd.jpg 2 Mayor.jpg

3 Platform.jpg 4 A Blessing 2.jpg 4 B Blessing 3.jpg 4 C Blessing.jpg

Today, St. Brigid's Day, 1st February 2006, President Mary McAleese, visited Kildare Town to officiate at the re-lighting of St. Brigid's Flame on the Market Square. The beautiful scuplture forms a permanent addition to the newly refurbished Market Square in Kildare and commemorates the historic flame kept alight for centuries by the Brigidine nuns after St. Brigid's death. A huge crowd of onlookers watched as the flame was re-lit and the memory of Brigid, 'Mary of the Gael,' was commemorated once more.

Posted by mariocorrigan at 06:39 PM


4 Crowd.jpg 5 Ceremony begins.jpg 6 Presentation girls.jpg 7 Brigidines.jpg 7 B Transferring the flame.jpg 8 President holds flame.jpg 9 Lighting the flame.jpg 10 Dance 2.jpg 11 Dance.jpg

Posted by mariocorrigan at 06:39 PM


12 Dancers and Brigidines.jpg 13 Pres address general.jpg 14 Pres address.jpg 15 Presidential Address.jpg 16 Gifts.jpg 17 Preparing to leave.jpg 18 Saying goodbye.jpg 19 Fr Carbery.jpg Niamh.jpg

Posted by mariocorrigan at 06:38 PM