F. Erlington (Francis Elrington) Ball.

The parish of Taney: a history of Dundrum, near Dublin, and its neighbourhood online

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Member Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland




Sometime Canon of Christ Church Cathedral


2060866 A2


IN placing this little work before the public, the
authors desire to acknowledge the valuable assist-
ance they have received from the following amongst
other friends.

The Rev. Canon Stokes, D.D., the learned author
of Ireland and tJie Celtic Church, and Ireland, and
the Anglo-Norman Church, &c., &c., has very kindly
revised the chapter upon the Antiquities of the
Parish, and supplied the materials for interesting

The Rev. William Reynell, B.D., M.B.I.A., placed
his ample knowledge of the clergy of the Diocese
of Dublin at their disposal, besides furnishing many
particulars for the biographical portions of the

To John H. Samuels, Esq., the Diocesan Registrar,
they desire to return thanks for his unvarying

courtesy in affording access to such of the Diocesan
Records as remain in his custody.

They are also indebted to J. J. Digges La
Touche, Esq., LL.D., Deputy Keeper of the Re-
cords, and the other officials in the Record Office,
as well as to the officials of the Library and
Registrar's Office of Trinity College and of the
National Library, Kildare Street.

September, 1895.



I. INTRODUCTION * . : . .1



IV. CHRIST CHURCH . . . . . 53


RECTOR ..... 66







APPENDICES ... . 229




T. C. = Taney Church.

T. G. = Taney Graveyard.

B. L. G. = Burke's Landed Gentry.

B. P. Burke's Peerage.

B. E. P. = Burke's Extinct Peerage.

T. C. D. = Trinity College, Dublin.

H. 0. = Holy Orders.

a. = aged.

b. = born.

m. = married.

unm. = unmarried.

d. = died or dead.

' *'* [ = died or dead without issue.
o.s. p. )

bapt. = baptized,

dau. = daughter.

bur. = buried.

c. = called.

q. v. = whom see or which see.




THE Parish of Taney comprises a district extend-
ing from the top of the Three Bock Mountain to
near the sea-shore at Merrion ; it is 5^ miles long
from N. to S., and 2 miles broad from E. to W. It
contains seventeen townlands, covering 4,569A. 3n.
14p. Statute measure, of which all but GA. OR. I?P.
are in the Half Barony of Piathdown.* This small
portion, which forms part of the townland of Eoe-
buck, lies in the Barony of Dublin.
The following are the townlandsj

A. B. P.

1. Balally
2. Ballinteer

... 834 2 5
... 282 1 24

3. Churchtown, Lower

... 180 2

4. Churchtown, Upper

... 221 7

*D'Alton (History of Co. Dublin, p. 807) states the entire
Barony of Rathdown was originally in the County of Dublin ;
but when Wieklow was made into a separate county, the
Barony was divided into two parts : that part of it lying to
the south of Bray River being comprised in the County of
Wieklow, and the remainder in the County of Dublin.


5. Drummartin ...

6. Dundrum

7. Farranboley

8. Friarland

9. Kingstown

10. Mount Anville...

11. Mountmerrion or Callary

12. Mountmerrion, South ...

13. Rathmines, Great

14. Eathmines, Little

15. Eoebuck

16. Tiknock

17. Trimleston or Owenstown

A. E. P.

188 2

317 2 38

150 3 7

39 2 9

194 2 1

, 89 26

376 2 27

4 2 25

, 88 2 15

, 68 3 25

822 2 17

, 634 1 29

, 75 39

4,509 3 14

The parish is bounded on the east by the parishes
of Booterstown, Stillorgan, Kilmacud, Tullow, and
Kilgobbin ; on the west by Eathfarnham and White-
church ; and on the north by St. Peter's and
Donnybrook. A small portion of the parish touched
the sea-shore at Merrion, but was transferred to the
parish of Booterstown in May, 1877.

The following is a statement of the population
and number of houses, taken from the Census
returns :















No.of Houses








The parish is a Rectory, which from the time
of Archbishop Luke of Dublin (1228-1255) was
attached to the Archdeaconry of Dublin, in support
of that dignity, and the Archdeacon continued
Rector down to the year 1851, when, on the death
of Archdeacon Torrens, by an order of the Lord
Lieutenant in Council,* the parish was separated
from the Archdeaconry.

It is not thought necessary in the following
pages to give the succession of the Archdeacons of
Dublin, which will be found, with full biographical
notes, in Mason's History of St. Patrick's, and in
Cotton's Fasti Ecclesice Hibernica. So far as is
possible, the succession of their curates who have
had charge of the parish is given ; but owing to the
diocesan records not being at present accessible, it
is very incomplete until the end of the eighteenth
century, when the parish recordsf begin. Before
that time the parish only enjoyed the ministrations
of curates who had other churches to serve in the
Archdeacon's corps.

In the chapter upon the antiquities of the parish
will be found an account of the ancient Deanery
of Taney ; the modern rural deanery is of much
smaller extent. In 1802 the latter comprised the
parishes of Taney, Kilgobbin, Rathfarnham, Still-
organ, Crumlin, and Tallaght ; and its contents are
still the same, with the addition of the parishes of
"Whitechurch, Kilternan, Zion Church Rathgar,

* Appendix A. f Appendix B.


and Milltown, and including the chapel of ease,
Taney, and the chapels of St. Columba's College,
of the Mageough Home, and of the Central Asylum,

It will be noticed that the name of the parish is
spelled in many different ways in the following
pages ; the rule which has been observed is, when
quoting from any document, to follow the peculiar
spelling found in it. This observation also applies
to the names of the other places mentioned.



'THE Parish of Taney, as an ecclesiastical estab-
-'- lishment, has survived the vicissitudes of many
centuries; and there seems little room for doubt,
although we cannot point to a noble edifice erected
by the master-builders of the middle ages, that
the worship of God has been conducted in this
place since before the English conquest of Ireland
in 1172.

But the parish seems not to have been the earliest
ecclesiastical establishment to which the name of
Taney was attached.

When Cardinal Paparo visited Ireland in 1152,
he found, it is said, that Taney was one of the
rural sees, or chorepiscopates, which then existed,
and which were taken as the extent of the jurisdic-
tion of the Arehpresbyters-rural, who supplanted
rural bishops, and who were the predecessors of our
present Eural Deans.*

There is no doubt that the Kural Deanery of
Taney was of great extent in ancient times.

About 1294, there was a new taxation of the
Diocese of Dublin for the Pope, and the total sum

* Dansey's Horae Decaniccs Eurales, vol. ii., pp. 516, 517.


raised in the Diocese was 707 11s., a very large
amount in those days.

In this taxation we find the Deanery of "Tanhy"
mentioned, and the following places, &c., included
in it: Church of Coulok (Coolock) ; Chapel of
Isolde's Town (Chapelizod), where "the Hospitallers
are rectors;" the tithes of the monks of Clonschi-
lagh (Clonsilla) ; Church of Leucane (Lucan)
["Monastery of St. Thomas"]; Church of Bali-
thermot (Ballyfarmot), where " the Hospitallers
are rectors;" Church of Kylmahud (Kilmacud) ;
Temporality of the Prior of St. Catherine (St.
Catherine's, near Leixlip) ; Church of Kylmatalwey
(Kilmactalway) ; Chapel of Kynturk, " Temporality
of All Saints' there ; " Temporality of the Monks
at Kylmatalwey ; the Prioress of Lesmolyn at
Clonschilagh (Clonsilla) ; Dunsenk (Dunsink) and
Belegrene (Belgree, Co. Meath ?) ; the Prior of St.
John of Dublin at Palmerstown ; the Prior of All
Saints' at Ballycollay ; the monks at Kylmacodrek
(Kilmacudrick) ; Ballykegh, " nothing, on account
of the war;" the monks at Coulmyne (Coolmine,
in the Parish of Saggard) and Clonlyff ; Cloghran-
hydryt (Cloghran, near Hiddart), and Aderk. The
total sum for the Deanery of " Tanhy " came to
60 13s. 4d.

It is to be observed that neither the Church of
Taney, nor its Chapelries of Donnybrook, Kathfarn-
ham, and Kilgobbin, are mentioned ; this may be
accounted for by the fact that these formed part of
the corps of the Archdeacon of Dublin, and that he


paid 10 as the tax upon his dignity as archdeacon.
The Vicarage of Tauelaghte (Tallaght), which is
still in the Rural Deanery of Taney, was included
among " the dignities and prebends of the Church
of St. Patrick, Dublin, with their vicarages;" but it
paid nothing, " on account of war."*

From the learned paper of Mr. James Mills upon
The Norman Settlement in Leinster,} we find that
"when King Henry granted Leinster to Strong-
bow certainly when King John confirmed it to
the Earl Marshal he excepted from the grant
the two cantredsj nearest to Dublin," and that
" further west (from Carrickbrenan) was Dundrum,
held soon after the Conquest by Hugh de Clahull.
Northwards lay Tacheny, now Churchtown. The
name is preserved in the parish name Taney.
This was held by John de Clahull, who was
Marshal of the Lordship of Leinster, and had
also extensive lands near Carlow, and subse-
quently in Kerry, where his family seems to have
settled. De Clahull gave all his land of Thacney
to the Archbishop of Dublin. (Liber Niger Alani,
fol. 108.) Eabo (now Eoebuck) is north-east of
Tacheny. It was held at first by Thomas de St.

* Vide Calendar to Christ Church Deeds, in the 20th
Eeport of the Deputy Keeper of Eecords in Ireland, pp. 60,

t Journal-of Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland, 1894,
pp. 161, 167.

J A cantred was a division of a county corresponding
to a " hundred " in England.


Michael, and given by John, the king's son, to
Thomas's brother, Eobert de St. Michael. By the
middle of the thirteenth century it had become the
property of a branch of the great Norman family of
Basset. A charter from David Basset to Fromund
le Brun, of the whole manor of Kabo, for ever, is
entered on the Pipe Boll of 46 Hen. III. It is
printed in Irish Record Com. Reports, vol. i., p. 836."

In the period immediately after the Norman
Settlement was constructed the barrier, known
as the " Pale," separating the lands occupied by
the settlers from those remaining in the hands
of the Irish. This barrier consisted of a ditch,
raised some ten or twelve feet from the ground,
with a hedge of thorn on the outer side. It was
constructed, not so much to keep out the Irish, as
to form an obstacle in their way in their raids on
the cattle of the settlers, and thus give time for a

The Pale began at Dalkey, and followed a south-
westerly direction towards Kilternan ; then turning
northwards passed Kilgobbin, where a castle still
stands, and crossed the Parish of Taney to the
south of that part of the lands of Balally now
called Moreen, :;: and thence in a westerly direction
to Tallaght, and on to Naas in the County of
Kildare.f In the wall bounding Moreen is still to

* Now the residence of Major Lenox Mac Farlane, and
formerly of the M'Kay family. Vide M'Kay, chapter vii.

f A portion of the Pale is still to be seen in Kildare between
Clane and Clongowes Wood College at Sallins.


be seen a small watch-tower and the remains of a
guard-house adjoining it. From this point a
beacon-fire would raise the alarm as far as Tallaght,
where an important castle stood.*

The earliest mention of the parish is to be found
in 1179, when Pope Alexander III. confirmed to
Archbishop Laurence O'Toole "the middle place
of Tignai with its church." The Papal Bull which
deals with Taney, among the other places in the
diocese in that year, is preserved for us in the
Liber Niger of Archbishop Alan; and a note by
the Archbishop himself, in the margin of his Liber
Niger, informs us that ' ' Tanney " is a church
appertaining to the prebend of the Archdeacon of
Dublin, the meaning of which will appear later.

John Alan occupied the Archiepiscopal throne of
Dublin from 1528 to 1534 ; he was an Englishman,
like most of the prelates who preceded and suc-
ceeded him in that office, educated at Cambridge,
Treasurer of St. Paul's Cathedral, and succeeded to
the See of Dublin through the influence of Cardinal
Wolsey, to whom he was chaplain. Having in-
curred the enmity of the Geraldine family, he was
murdered by some of their party at Artane, near
Dublin, on 28th July, 1534. f

* This sketch of the Pale is based on a note supplied by
the Rev. G. T. Stokes, D.D.

t Cotton's Fasti Ecclesia Hibernicce, vol. ii., p. 18 ; and in
the Dictionary of National Biography, vol. i., p. 305, will be
found a fuller account of his life by that eminent historian
of the reign of Henry VIII., James Gairdner, Esq., of the
English Rolls Office.


To his industry and love of antiquities we are
indebted for the preservation of the contents of
many ancient documents which existed in his day,
but which have long since disappeared. He found
already compiled a register of ancient documents
called the Crede Mild, which was made about
1275, and this he embellished with notes of his
own. The original of this register is in the
custody of the Archbishop of Dublin, and is the
oldest existing record of the state of the parishes in
the Diocese of Dublin. Archbishop Alan caused
two other registers to be compiled ; one called his
Repertorium Viride, and the other his Liber Niger,*
The original of the Repertorium Viride is not now
forthcoming, but several copies of it the latest
being of the seventeenth century and the original
of the Liber Niger are in the custody of the Arch-
bishop.t In the latter are to be found many
marginal notes in the handwriting of Alan, such
as that quoted above about this parish. J

In addition to being the name of a rural deanery

* Sometimes called Alan's Register.

| For a minute description of the present condition of the
Crede Mihi and the Liber Niger, vide Preface (pp. xvi.-xx.)
to Historic and Municipal Documents of Ireland, 1172-1320,
edited by J. T. Gilbert. London, 1870.

J The late Dr. Reeves, the Bishop of Down, Connor, and
Dromore, caused a copy of the Liber Niger to be made in
MS., and he then copied into it, in his own clear writing, all
Alan's notes. This copy is in the Library of T.C.D. Vide
Journal of Eoyal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland, 1893,
p. 303.


and a parish, Taney is also the title of a prebendal
stall in St. Patrick's Cathedral. In 1227 the value
of this prebend was forty marks, or 26 13s. 4d.,
and the name is written " Tathtoin," by which we
would not recognise our parish, were it not for
Alan's note, "alias Tawney."*

At this date it was, no doubt, a separate dignity,
although the names of the prebendaries have not
come down to us ; but Archbishop Luke (1228-
1255) granted both the church and the prebend to
the Archdeacon of Dublin, in support of his dignity,
reserving thence to the Legate a latere, the
hundredth part, which had been paid by way of
proxy from very remote times.

The Church of Luske had previously been held
by the Archdeacon ; but it was then taken away,
and Taney, which was described as a "mother
church," having three chapels subservient to it
Donabroke (Donnybrook), Kilgoban (Kilgobbin),
and Bathfarnham was given in exchange.!

Both the church and prebend remained in the
possession of the Archdeacon from that time until
1851 ; the prebend remained in abeyance for some
years after 1851; but since St. Patrick's became
the National Cathedral, the stall has been revived,
and is now assigned to the Diocese of Limerick.

Except the occasional mention of the parish
among the possessions of the Archdeacon, and in

* Mason's History of St. Patrick's, Appendix v.
t Mason's History of St. Patrick's, pp. 44, 45 ; also Alan's
Repertorium Viride


ancient deeds of the period, we have very little
information about it during the fourteenth or
fifteenth century.

A considerable portion of the Archbishop's tem-
poralities consisted of the Manor of St. Sepulchre,
which extended from near St. Patrick's Cathedral
into the Parish of Taney beyond Milltown. In a
lease from the Archbishop to Thomas Locum, made
in 1414, which is preserved in the Liber Niger, a
description is given of the style of residence suited
to the larger tenants of the manor. By this lease,
the tenant was to build within four years, at his
own expense, a stone house, walled and battle-
mented, 18 feet in breadth by 26 feet in length,
and 40 feet in height a house of these dimensions
would more resemble a tower than a mere dwelling-
house the rent of the land in time of peace was
to be 3d. per acre, and in time of war, nothing.*

The only traces which we find in the records of
the Church of the stirring events of Henry VIII. 's
reign are those connected with the dissolution of
St. Patrick's Cathedral.

By an inquisition held on the 27th January, in
the thirty-eighth year of Henry VIII. (1546), the
extent and value of the archidiaconal possessions in
Taney were reported to be as follows :

"In the town-land of Tanee (alias Church-
townt) there is of demesne, appertaining to said

* Vide Mr. James Mills' paper on The Manor of St. Sepul-
chre, in Journal of the Royal Historical and ArcJucological
Association of Ireland, 1889, p. 31, et seq.

f Vide post, Survey of Half-Barony of liathdown, 1654.


rectory or prebend, one messuage and ix acres of
arable land, one stang (i.e., a pole or perch) of
meadow, value, per annum, ixs. The tithes issue
from the town-lands of Tanee, Dondrommy (Don-
dromarty, in inquisition of 1 Edw. VI., quoted by
Mason [Drummartin or Dundrum ?]), Balawly,
Balayn (Ballinteer), Eebowe (Rabo or Eoebuck),
"the Chantrell ferme" and Challorighe (Mount -
merrion or Callary) value xixl. per annum; the
demesne lands, altarages, and oblations of Tanee
are assigned to the curate for his stipend."'"

The cathedral was dissolved in 1546, and the
possessions of the Archdeacon were confiscated ;
but in 1547 William Power, who had held the
Archdeaconry at the suppression, received a pension
from Edward VI. as " Prebendary of Tannee and
Rathfernane."f During the time of the suppression
the parishes of Taney and Bathf arnham were leased
to Sir John Allen, Knight. J The Archdeaconry
was restored in 1555 by Queen Mary, and, no doubt,
the Parish of Taney amongst its possessions.

The next notice which we find of the parish is in
1615, when a " Regal Visitation " was carried out
by Archbishop Thomas Jones, in obedience to the
command of James I. This visitation found Robert
Pont resident curate, and the church and chancel
in good repair, and furnished with service books.
It may be remarked, that the chancel was mentioned

* Mason's History of St. Patrick's, p. 46.

t Cotton's Fasti Ecclesice Hibernica, vol. ii., p. 129.

{ Mason's History of St. Patrick's, p. 45.

Latin MS. in the Public Eecord Office, Dublin.


separately, because, under the old ecclesiastical law,
the rector was bound to keep that part of the fabric
in repair.

In 1630 Dr. Lancelot Bulkeley, who was Arch-
bishop from 1619 to 1650, prepared an account of
the diocese, and presented it to the Privy Council
on the 1st June in that year. The following is a
translation of his report of Taney : " The tithes
belong to the Archdeacon of Dublin. The church
is ruinous : there are only two householders in
that parish that come to church. There is one
John Cawhell (Cahill), a priest, that commonly
says Mass at Dundrurn and Ballawly. Mr. Eichard
Prescott, Master of Arts and Preacher, serves the
cure. The Archdeaconry of Dublin is worth per
annum a hundred pounds sterling."*

There are still the ruins of a small church to be
seen in the townland, Balally (Ballawley f), and

* The original Latin document is in the Library of T.C.D.,
and there is a translation in the Irish Ecclesiastical Record,
1869, vol. v., p. 145, et seq. (Under the head of "Donna-
brooke " it is stated that the tithes of that parish, and of
Taney and Eathfarnham, belong to the Archdeacon of
Dublin, being worth 100 per annum, and that Mr. Prescott
discharges the cures, for which he receives 12.)

t Derivation of Ballawley : Balamhlaibh or Bally Amh-
laibh, or Olaf, or Olave = the town of Olave, the famous
Danish saint, who had a church off Fishamble Street. This
corroborates the tradition that there was a colony of Danes
at the foot of the " Three Rock Mountain." It is also to be
noted that there is a place called " Harold's Grange," near
Ballawley, and that the Harold family have held land near
Kilgobbin from the twelfth century. (Note supplied by Rev.
G. T. Stokes, D.D.)


this is the only mention which we can find of its
being used for service.

The plans of Cromwell for the settlement of Ire-
land, after he had obtained the mastery of it, are
well known to all readers of history. His method,
in this instance, was conceived with the same
thoroughness of design which always distinguished
his courses of action. Before proceeding to hand
over the lands upon which he intended to establish
his followers and other English settlers, he caused
a careful survey to be made of all the lands which
had been forfeited. Of the Half-Barony of Rath-
down, two of such surveys were made the first
in 1654, by order of Charles Fleetwood, Lord
Deputy,* and the second in 1657, by Sir William
Petty the latter being the celebrated Doicn Sur-

Fleetwood's Survey describes the Parish of Taney
as containing the townlands of " Bellawly," " Don-
drom" and "Ballintry" (Ballinteer), "Rabuck"
(Roebuck), Owenstown, Kilmacud ; a moiety of
Churchtown, Churchtown alias " Tanee," and Tip-
perstown.J The parish is stated to be bounded on
the west by Rathfarnham, on the south by the
Parish of Kilgobbin, on the east and north by the
Parish of " Donnebrook."

* Lodge's Desiderata Curiosa Hibernica, vol. ii., pp. 529-

t Public Becord Office, Dublin.

J Tipperstown is Tubberstown, the Town of the Well, and
is the townland on which Stillorgan station now stands.
(Note supplied by Kev. G. T. Stokes, D.D.)


The townland of " Bella wly " is returned as the
property of James Walsh* of Ballawley, " Irish
Papist," containing 220 acres, having on the pre-
mises one castle thatched, and the walls of a
chapel ; the tithes had belonged to St. Patrick's,
Dublin, but then to the College of Dublin.

The townlands of " Dondrom " and " Ballintry "
are stated to be the property of Colonel Oliver
Fitzwilliam,t of Merrion, " Irish Papist," who
acted in the Irish Army as Major-General ; the
area was 500 acres ; there was on the premises one
castle slated, and a barn ; one garden plot, and a
small churchyard ; the premises had been a manor,
and had kept court-leet and court-baron ; the tithes
belonged to the College of Dublin.

The townland of "Babuck" is stated to be the
property of "Mathew," Lord Baron Trimblestown,J

* Brewer, in his Beauties of Ireland, p. 216, says that the
family of Walsh were of the line of Carrickmaine, and that
Kilgobbin Castle was erected by them, but was forfeited in
the reign of Charles I., when it passed to the Loftus family.

f Afterwards second Viscount Fitzwilliam. He was a
distinguished military officer, and was a Lieutenant-General
under the Marquis of Ormonde. He was created Earl of
Tyrconnel, circa 1661. He m., first, Dorothy Brereton, of
Malpas, Cheshire, and secondly, Lady Eleanor Holies, eldest
dau. of John, first Earl of Clare. ^Creation 1624, vide B. E. P.,
1866, p. 281.) He d. s. p. April 11, 1667, and was bur. at

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