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Claregalway Friary Church
 

County

Galway

Coordinates

N 53° 20' 49.0"   W 008° 56' 41.6"

Nearest town

Galway

Grid Ref.

M 37122 33359

Map No.

46

Elevation a.s.l. (m)

8

Date of visit

Monday 15 May 2006

GPS Accuracy (m)

5
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The impressive remains of the Claregalway abbey seen from the car park.


The Claregalway friary is in the village with the same name and on the left bank of the river Clare. It's a Franciscan friary built in the second half of the 13th century by John de Cogan, an Anglo-Norman knight.
The de Cogan clan held the patronage of the friary and the community until 1327, when the family gave the building and the surrounding lands to the monks.
The square tower in the middle of the complex is 24 metres tall and was added in the 15th century.
The religious community lived in the friary until the beginning of the 16th century, when the English Reformation disrupted the Catholic establishment in Ireland.
Leonard Grey, 1st Viscount Grane, Lord Deputy of Ireland and commander of the army against the Irish rebels, raided the friary while he and his army were on march to Galway on July 11, 1538.
Queen Elizabeth I granted the possession of the friary to Sir Richard de Burgo in 1570, and in 1589 the buildings were turned to military barracks by the English governor Sir Richard Bingham.
In 1892 the friary was donated to the Commission of Public Works.


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