The relics of antiquity anterior to the arrival of the English are very few, with the exception of monastic buildings. A fine tumulus or rath stands at Salville or Moatabeg, and another at Donamore, both in the neighbourhood of Enniscorthy. Near Old Ross there is also a rath or tumulus, and two of considerable extent near Dunbrody. Smaller raths are scattered in numbers through the southern baronies: one of the most perfect is at Ballytrent, near Broadway, which has a double mound, and has been lately laid out as a pleasure garden. There are remains of monasteries at Wexford town, Enniscorthy, St. John's to the south of it, Ferns, Dunbrody, Ross, and Clonmines.

Tintern abbey has been converted into a residence of the Colclough family. The houses of Ballyhack, Carnsore, and Clonmore, are now parish churches; the remains of Glascarrig are still visible, part being used as a barn. The sites of the other monastic buildings are either uncertain or wholly unknown: their names are Achadhabla, Airdnecoemhain, Arbensis, Ardladhrann, Camross, Disert-Cheandubhoin, Down, Drum-chaoin-chellaigh, Fionmagh, Horetown, Inverdaoile, Innisbeg, Innisfeal, Kilcloghan or Killogan, Maghere-nuidhe, Seanbhotha, and Taghmon. There were religious houses on each of the little islands of Beg Erin and Derinis. Near Carnsore are the ruins of a very ancient chapel, called St. Vaugh's.

The remains of castellated buildings are still more numerous. At Wexford is White castle, over against the entrance to the harbour, also a castle within the town, since taken down and a barrack erected on its site. Two miles north-west of the town is Carrigg castle, seated on the pinnacle of a rock over the Slaney. Two miles from Wexford is also the castle of Barntown; and that of Ferns is worthy of note both in an historical and architectural point of view. One of the noblest and earliest military structures of the English settlers is Enniscorthy castle.

Another of these feudal structures is at Mackmine: Brown's castle, on a projecting point over the river Slaney, about two miles from Enniscorthy, is in ruins. At a short distance from Dunbrody abbey is a curious old fortress, called Cuislan-na-Blahie, or "Buttermilk Castle"; and in the same neighbourhood are the ruins of Killesk, Knockagh, and Kilhile castles. Of Ballykeroge or Button's castle, so called from its founder, Roger de Sutton, considerable ruins still exist; and in the same neighbourhood are a castle at Stokestown, another at Aldertown, a third at Priest's Haggard, and two in the Great Island.

On the summit of Mountgarrett, a lofty hill that overlooks the town of New Ross, are the ruins of an ancient castle, from which a branch of the Butler family derives the title of Viscount. On the peninsula of Hook are the remains of Slade castle and Houseland castle; and on its extreme point is the old fort Hook tower, which has recently been converted into a lighthouse. Duncormuck or Croscormuck castle, on the inlet of Bannow, also owes its erection to the English settlers under de Montmorency.

There are the remains, more or less perfect, of nearly sixty of these ancient castles, or towers, most of which are situated in the baronies of Forth and Bargy: the principal, not already enumerated, are Johnstown castle, near Wexford, now incorporated with the modern castellated mansion of H. R. G. Morgan, Esq.; Rathmacknee, in the same neighbourhood, which was inhabited by the Knox family within the last seventy years; Bargy, which gave name to the barony, also incorporated with some comparatively modern additions; Butlerstown, Lingstown, Ballycogley, and Cloest, in the barony of Forth; and Ballyhealy, Ballyteigue, Baldwinstown, Coolhull, and Dane's castle, in that of Bargy.

Not far from Duncormuck castle is Strongbow's fort, on the head of Bagenbon, where are yet visible the remains of strong intrenchments, attributed to that leader, though it is more probable that they were thrown up by the party under Fitz-Stephen, who landed there two years before, as Strongbow's debarkation took place in the county of Waterford. Duncannon fort, on the eastern bank of Waterford harbour, is modern in comparison with those hitherto noticed. The modern mansions of the nobility and gentry are described in their respective parishes.

County Wexford | Wexford Towns and Baronies | Wexford Topography | Wexford Climate | Wexford Agriculture | Wexford Geology | Wexford Manufacturing | Wexford Rivers | Wexford Antiquities | Wexford Town

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