Lough Corrib - Irish Pictures (1888)

From Irish Pictures Drawn with Pen and Pencil (1888) by Richard Lovett

Chapter VII: Connemara … continued

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After exhausting in a more or less rapid fashion the sights of Galway and the neighbourhood, most travellers push on into the wilds of Connemara. Loughs Corrib and Mask, together with the village of Cong, lie at the beginning of the route. During the summer a steamer sails daily from Galway to Cong, traversing Lough Corrib, which is not only one of the largest but also one of the loveliest in Ireland. It covers an area of no less than 44,000 acres. It is studded with islets, the most important being Inchagoill, or 'the island of the devout foreigner,' which contains an ancient graveyard and the ruins of two very old Irish churches. The more ancient of the two is known as Teampull Phaidrig, or St. Patrick's Church, and has claims by no means despicable to be considered as belonging to the age of the great Irish missionary. There is, moreover, upon Inchagoill a stone monument bearing the inscription, 'the stone of Lugnaedon, son of Limenueh,' who is generally held to have been sister of St. Patrick. Experts have decided that on palaeographical grounds the inscription cannot be referred to a later date than the very beginning of the sixth century.

The second church, Teampull-na-Neave, 'the church of the Saint,' is several centuries younger than St. Patrick's, and presents to the student of church architecture a very fine example of the decorated, circular-arched, cluster-pillared doorway.

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