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THE BATTLE OF DUNDONNELL (BAGINBUN), A.B. 1170.
BY GODDARD H. ORPEX.
IHave already, in the pages of our Journal,1 given my reasons for identifying Baginbun with the place where Raymond le Gros first landed in Ireland and entrenched himself for nearly four months, waiting for the coming of Strongbow, and I need not repeat the reasons here. I have, however, an important addition to make to my former proofs, ample ns I think they were. In my previous article, I said that the Irish name t>un Oorohnaill (Bundonnell) clearly indicated by our authorit ies (the '' Expugnatio BTiberaica" of Gerald de Barri, and the '' Song of Dermot"), as Raymond's landing-place, has been lost. "Well, I think I have since found a clear trace of it.
In the year 1898, I searched in the careful Transcript, made by my friend Captain Philip Hore, of the accounts of the rents of Roger Bigod, Earl of Norfolk, rendered in the latter part of the thirteenth century (1279-1294), and I found several references to a district called Crosdovenold, which would be the regular Anglo-Norman form of Cpop-Oorhnaill, always in connexion with place-names in the neighbourhood of Baginbun. These references to Crosdovenold, or some of them, have since been printed in the first volume of Mr. Hore's " History of Wexford " (New Ross), pages 13, 18, 22, and 172. See, too, the volume containing the "History of the Great Island," p. 199, note, and p. 219. Mr. Hore prints the name Crosdonenold, or Crosdonenald, but the first n should clearly be written « = v. Dovenald, or Duvenald, was the ordinary Anglo-Norman form of Dorhnall. Crossdonnell formed an appurtenance of the Barony of the Island, i.e. Hervey's Island, or De Barry's Island,3 or the Great Island, as it is now called, in the parish of Kilmokea; but that the rents appurtenant to the Barony of the Island did not all issue out of lands situated in the Island itself, but included lands near Fethard, appears from an examination of the denominations and acreage given. In the first place, the acreage of the Great Island is given in the Down Survey as 448 Irish acres, and in the Ordnance Survey as 790 statute acres, including reclaimed land; whereas, according to the Earl's accounts, the rents appurtenant to the barony issued from lands amounting to 902 Irish acres, and this not counting the two carucates (240 acres) in the south part of the island
1 For the year 1898, pp. 155-160.
8 Luke d« harry was appointed custodian of the Island in 1312 (Hore's "History of the Great Island," p. 221). We afterwards find the names—Durbard's Island, Durban-, Dunberis, and many others, all applied to the Great Island. (See the Society's Armuary, 1868-9, p. 39, note.)
■which had been granted rent-free to Dunbrody.1 So that of the denominations mentioned, an acreage of not quite two carucates could have been actually situated in the Great Island. In the second place, of the denominations themselves, two of them may certainly, and several of them may probably, be identified with places in the neighbourhood of Fethard.
These denominations, with their probable Irish equivalents, their acreages, and probable situations," are as follows:—
Arding: Gipofn; 1 earucate and 13 acres, probably in the Island. See a reference, under date 1382, to the weir of Ardyng in the Island, County Wexford. Hore's "History of the Great Island," p. 222.
Grange: 5lia15 > * earucate, probably Grange, a townland in the parish of Fethard. The Earl appears to have worked a furm at "the Grange" and at Baliconnor, or Baliconoh, &c, where he enclosed the haggard with a ditch and palisade. This may have been Balycoynner, &c. See below.
Ballihobre, Ballyowyr in the Inquisition, 1306; 1 earucate 14 acres, perhaps baile ooap (pronounced Ballyower), now the townland of Balliniry, baile na h-ui&pe (on oblique form of the same word), in the parish of Fethard: cf. Joyce, vol. ii. pp. 285-8, 5th ed.
Balycoynner, Balicognnogh, Baliconnor, Ballicunogh, Balicunough; 1 earucate, perhaps baile an chonaio = 'the town of the firebote ': cf. Joyce, vol. ii. 351, perhaps now the townland of Connagh in the parish of Fethard.
Crosdovenold: Cpop t)omnaill; 1 earucate, probably the district including Dundonnell (Baginbun), now the townland known by the modern name of llamstown.
■Gortinfinor, Gortinfineria: 5u,Pc^n pionnabpach, where pionnabpach is genitive of pinnabaip, either a person's name or a whitish place (Joyce, vol. ii. 273-5); perhaps now the townland of Gorteens, in the parish of Fethard.
Gulnagh, Culiimagh: Cuilliona6 = a place abounding in hollies. (Joyce, vol. i. p. 514).
Balidowyskre, Baly de Wyskyr, Balidowsker: baile buib uipge; perhaps the name is now represented by the parish of Owenduff, which would have the same meaning. It is bounded by the river Owenduff or Blackwater. There were 2 carucates in this place and Culnagh, which was probably adjoining. The latter seems to have been near Ballykearoge. See Hore's "History of the Great Island," p. 223, when Quylnagh (probably) = Culnagh.
1 "Chart, of St. Mary's," K. S., vol. ii., p. 152.
2 In identifying place-names mentioned in English (or Latin) documents, my plan :is to collect all the variants available, and from them reconstruct the probable Irish
original. "With the aid of this, it is often easy to detect the modern form in the district indicated, and much safer than to rely on fancied resemblances between earlier and later English forms.
Eandouan: jnnn oubcun, the well-known Irish, name for the Hook Point.—E.S.A.I., 1854-5, pp. 197-9. The Hook Tower and 12 acres of land close by were afterwards held by the Sovereign and Commonalty of New Boss, by the service of 18(7. a year appurtenant to the manor of Old Eoss. See Inquisition (1411), Car, MSS. 611, p. 14, transcribed in Hore's "History of New Eoss," p. 219.
Dungulp, Dromecolp in the Inquisition of 1306, is also mentioned in this counexion: t)un Colpa = the fort of heifers; now Dungulph, in the parish of Fethard; Drunkulip, or Drumkulip, in the foundation Charters of Dunbrody.
Kylmehanoc, Kilmehenoc: Cill mo Clionoc; now Kilmannock in the parish of Kilmokea, adjoining the Great Island.
Thus, of these eleven denominations grouped under the barony of the island, two, viz., Dungulph and Einndubhain or the Hook, are certainly not far from Fethard, and four others (not counting Crossdonnell), viz., Grange, Ballyhobre or Ballyowyr, Ballycunough, and Gortinfinor, are probably quite close to Fethard. Therefore, as we caunot identify Crossdonnell with any place in the island itself, where indeed there is no room for it, or in the immediate neighbourhood of the island, it may almost certainly be regarded as representing the townland with the modem name of Eamstown, including the headland (Baginbun), which was known to the Irish at the time of the landing of Eaymond le Gros as Dundonnell. The two carucates in the south part of the island held rent free by Dunbrody, the lands of Ardyng, containing 1 carucate and 14 acres, and the castle with its demesne, are enough to account for the 448 acres of the island itself.
As to the difference of the names Crossdonnell and Dundonnell, Mr. Hore suggests 1 that a cross was probably erected to commemorate the first pitched battle between the invaders and the native Irish; and that the spot was subsequently known as Crossdovenold. This may have been so, and the statement in the note to Hooker's translation of the "Expugnatio " (edition 1587) might be quoted in support of this view; viz.: "that there were certeine monuments made in memorie thereof [i.e. of the first landing of the English], and were named the Banna [rede the Bagg2] and theBoenne, which were the names (as the common fame is) of the two greatest ships in which the Englishmen there urrived." Common fame, as I have elsewhere pointed out, confused the landing of FitzStephen at Banua (often corruptly written Banna or Banne) with that of Eaymond, at the place afterwards known as Bagg and Bunn, and now written in one word Baginbun; but may have been correct as to the origin of this last curious name. La Bague (the ring
1 See his "History of Wexford, Duncannon Fort, and tho Southern Part of li e Barony of Shelburne," p. 429. note.
s See Leigh of lloiegai land's " Chorograpbic Account of Wexford," 1684 [Journal, 1858-0, p. 461).
or jewel) and la Bonne are not improbable names of Norman ships. Without, however, assuming that these monuments took the form of' crosses, it is possible that the name Dundonnell was confined to the headland, on which there was a Celtic t>un, and that the neighbouring district to the south of Fethard was called Cross-donnell, as being originally ecclesiastical land, belonging to the Bishop of Ferns, and forming part of what became known as his manor of Fethard.1
The explanation of the fact of these outlying lands near Fethard being included in the Barony of the Island is probably as follows:—
Hervey de Montmorenci's lands appear to have been comprised in the modern Baronies of Bargy and Shelburne. From his subsequent gifts it is evident that these were, roughly speaking at any rate, "the two cantreds next the sea, between the towns of Wexford and Waterford," mentioned by Gerald de Barri.3 Some of his lands in Bargy he granted to Christ Church, Canterbury, and, in 1245, the Prior and Chapter of that house transferred them to the Convent of Tintern, Wexford,3 founded by William the Marshal, in the year 1200. Of his lands in Shelburne lie granted a large portion, extending from the southern part of the Great Island to near Fethard, to the monks of Buildwas, in Wales, to found a Cistercian Monastery.4 Their rights were afterwards (1182) transferred to St. Mary's Abbey, Dublin, and the Abbey and Barony (as it was called) of Dunbrody grew up in that district, He probably made some lay grants, in return for military service, as well; and we know that a large district between Fethard and the Hook, by whomsoever granted, formed the Manor of Kilclogan, and belonged to the Preceptory of Templars there. Hervey himself appears to have resided on the Island, which was therefore called "Insula Hervici." He accordingly made it his caput manerii, to which the rents and services of his remaining lands were appurtenant. Thus, the Barony of the Island was locally cut in two by the Barony of Dunbrody. Hervey became a monk in Christ Church, Canterbury, and left no descendants ; and his remaining lands, constituting the Barony of the Island, must have passed by grant, or escheat, or re-grant from the Crown to Strongbow's heirs in the lordship of Leinster, and so, on partition in 1246, to the Earls of Norfolk.
Assuming this identification of Baginbun with Kaymond's landingplace to be established, let me briefly recount what happened here—not drawing on my imagination, but merely relating what I can piece together from the primary authorities, and from an examination of the spot. It was about May Day in 1170 when Baymond, son of William Fitzgerald, of Carew Castle, ncnT Pembroke, landed, with ten men-at-arms
1 See Hore's "History of Fethard," p. 309, &c.: and the " Inspexinius of John St. John, Bishop of Ferns, 1223-1243," "Chart. St. Mary's, Duhlin," K. S., vol. i., p. 171.
3 " Expug. Hib.," R. S., vol. v., p. 233.
3 " Chart. St. Mary's, Dublin," vol.ii., pp. lxxii and lux (».), 4. * Ibid., vol. ii., p. 151.
and seventy archers, at that little creek where we have just come to shore.1 He was a young man of Stronghow's household; and was sent forward by Strongbow as earnest of his promise to assist Dermot UcMurrough to recover his kingdom of Leinster, while Strongbow himself was completing his preparations. Raymond is described by his •cousin, Gerald de Barri, as of little more than average height, but very stout. Hence he was often called Raymond le Gros. He had rather curly, yellow hair, large, round, grey eyes, a somewhat prominent nose, and a high-coloured, jovial, pleasant countenance; and, although undoubtedly corpulent, he made up for the heaviness of his body by his light-heartedness and high spirits. He was a man of simple habits, not luxurious in either food or dress, patient and hardy, and equally inured to heat or cold. He was careful of his men, and would spend the nights in going the rounds of the sentinels and challenging them, to keep them on the alert. It was owing to his vigilance that the men in his command had the good fortune of rarely, if ever, being overwhelmed in rash undertakings, or beiug caught by surprise. He thought so much of the welfare of his troops that he welcomed the position of command, because it enabled him to serve them. "In short," says his admiring cousin, "he was a kind and prudent man, a skilful and daring soldier, and a consummate general."
When Raymond with his tiny force landed here, the fortunes of the -earlier invaders were at a low ebb. Maurice de Prendergast had deserted Dermot, and had returned to Wales with 200 men. Robert FitzStephen was probably at this time absent in Thomond, assisting Donnell O'Brien, Dei-mot's son-in-law, in his revolt against the Ard Ri. Dermot himself had been forced to give hostages to the Ard Ri, and had secretly promised to bring in no more foreigners. Of course, he did not intend to keep his ■oath; but it was not worth while breaking it for the sake of Raymond's tiny band. Accordingly, no one joined Raymond except Hervey de Montmorenci, with three men-at-arms. Another notable person in Raymond's company was Walter Bluet, to whom Raglan Castle is said to have been given by Strongbow, in consideration of his services in Ireland.
Raymond on landing was, therefore, in a somewhat perilous position; so he determined to entrench himself on the spot, and await the arrival of Strongbow. The first thing to do was to throw up that double rampart .and ditch which can be scon, after all these centuries, cutting off the whole headland. It is about 240 paces long, and is still in parts about 12 feet high. The next thing he did was to raid the adjoining districts for cattle to provision his little garrison. He could theu, when occasion required, retire with his cattle within his lines, and await the event.
The event came soon enough, in the shape of a determined attack by the Danes of Waterford. With the warning they had received in the
1 This part of the Paper was lead on the 29th of June, 1901, at Baginbun, to the members of our Society who look part iu the Archaejlogicul Cruise of that year.