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Ballinrobe (Friary)

Order: Augustinian Friars

Name of Foundation: Ballinrobe

Barony: Kilmaine/ Cill Mheáin
Civil Parish: Ballinrobe/ Baile an Róba
Townland: Friarsquarter West ( Ceathrú na mBráthar Thoir)

Main events in the history of this site

pre 1337Foundation - The friary was in existence in 1337, when it is mentioned in the register of the Dominicans of Athenry (Arch. Hib. i, 1912, 207). H. T. Knox, Hist. Co. Mayo, 95, suggests a foundation by Maurice Fitzgerald (d. 1257), which is definitely too early. D'Alton considers a de Burgo foundation more likely. FXM thinks that the foundation was probably c. 1312, by Elizabeth de Clare, grand-daughter of Edward I and wife of John de Burgo, son and heir of Richard de Burgo, Earl of Ulster. When they married in 1308, the earl granted them the manor of Lough Mask which included Ballinrobe. (Orpen, iii, 208). Elizabeth and others of her family were benefactors of this order in England. (Med. religious houses, Ire., 296) 
1338 - In 1338, Edmund de Burgo, son of Richard 'the Red Earl' of Ulster, was seized in the friars' cloister by Edmund Albanach de Burgo, his cousin, and others, who took him to an island in L. Mask and later put him in a sack and drowned him, while discussions for reconciliation were actually in progress. (Knox, 134 - 5), (A. Conn), (Med. religious houses, Ire., 296) 
1400 - 1431 - Indulgences were granted in 1400 and 1431, the buildings of the monastery of St. Mary V. being in need of repair. (CPR), (Med. religious houses, Ire., 296) 
1424 - Bernard de Burgo was prior in 1424. (AGA), (Med. religious houses, Ire., 296) 
1574 - FXM points out, that, although Ballinrobe was an Anglo-Irish or English foundation, it was the first house of the order in Connacht, and paved the way for other foundations in that province. The friars were still in occupation in 1574. (Med. religious houses, Ire., 296) 
1584 - 5 - An inquisition of 1584 - 5 found that the possessions included a quarter of land (c. 30 acres), a parcel called St. John's of 2 acres, with a mill and a watercourse (A (K)). St. John's is presumably the church of St. John the Baptist, which belonged to the Knight's Hospitallers in 1414. (CPR),(Med. religious houses, Ire., 296) 
1641 - The friars were in occupation here after the 1641 rebellion. (Med. religious houses, Ire., 296) 

Bibliographical sources

2 Printed sources

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Archival sources

National Library of Ireland, 'A typescript account of the history of the parish of Ballinrobe, Co. Mayo, by Henry Knox, early 20th', (Document), (View website)

Mayo, OSI Grid:M1927664714