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Creevelea Friary Church
 

County

Leitrim

Coordinates

N 54° 13' 51.9"   W 008° 18' 36.5"

Nearest town

Dromahair

Grid Ref.

G 79825 31396

Map No.

25

Elevation a.s.l. (m)

29

Date of visit

Thursday 2 June 2011

GPS Accuracy (m)

6
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The west gable of the friary.


A hidden treasure in the northwest countryside of Ireland. Not many people know of its existence. I found it on a illustrated map of Ireland hanging on the wall in the hallway of a B&B house in Boyle two years ago. I took note of the name, and when I was home I looked for information about it.
It is also known as the Friary of Killanummery.
The place is remote, but when we came here we found at least a dozen persons. They were visiting their dead, though, they weren't tourists.
It was founded by Margaret O'Brien in 1508 and it was the last Franciscan friary to be built before the suppression of the monasteries by order of king Henry VIII.
It was damaged by a fire and also used a stable in 1590.
The friars returned in 1601 and restored the buildings, but they were again persecuted by the army of Oliver Cromwell in 1642.
They eventually abandoned the friary at the end of the 17th century.
The friary is in ruins but the cloister is still the best thing to see here.
On the west face of the seventh pillar in the north side of the cloister arcades there are also two beautiful carvings of St. Francis, one shows him with stigmata on his hands, the other one depicts him while talking to the birds.
Other fine carvings are on the corbels of the central tower.
The church faces east (95°).


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