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Annals :: 1400-1500

From MacWilliam supremacy in the Shrule area to the parish being annexed to the Wardenship of Galway .

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Death of Thomas McWilliam. At this time it is certain that the castles and lands of Shrule, Moyne, Ballycurran, Ballisnahiney and Mocorha were in his possession and were divided among his five sons, three of them very important for our parish Walter 3rd McWilliam, from him came the Shrule line of Burke.Edmund II, 4rd. McWilliam, his line resided in Kinlough until the end of the 16th century.Thomas Og, 5th McWilliam, is said to have built the castle in Moyne.


Upper McWilliam invaded Conmaicne Cuile, this seemed to have been an episode in the O’Connor Donn and Roe war.


A great famine ravage the land.


Exceeding great frost and snow and stormy weather that year, so that no herb grew on the ground and no leaf budded on a tree until the feast of St. Brendan . At this stage the Lower McWilliams had achieved absolute power in our area, so much so that he considered himself independent from the Crown.He was Catholic and founded churches and monasteries with many Burkes becoming churchmen some of whom won distinction. He adopted Irish customs, laws, language and our system of succession to chieftaincy. The Norman intermarried with the Irish, in all things he became Irish but one: He was a feudal lord, owning all the land, everyone else being tenants, contrary to the Brehon laws that guaranteed to everyboby a God given right to possess some land from which no rent could be raised. This marked the Norman Lord as a foreigner, no matter how hard he tried to be Irish.


After much friction,the haughty inhabitants of Galway appealed to Archbishop Donatus O’Murray to release them from his jurisdiction and to establish what is now known as the Wardenship of Galway, which was accepted in 1484, for the best spiritual welfare of all concerned, the church of St Nicholas being made a Collegiate Church. The inhabitants then sent a petition to Rome, Pope Innocent VIII confirming the Archbishop ‘s action.The church was to be governed by a Warden and eight vicars, those vicars being elected for life by the town mayor and equals, the warden being deputed annually by the vicars.The Wardenship was to be fully independant except for the administration of the sacrament of confirmation, Holy orders, and other consecrations,Though originally consisting of only two parishes, the wardenship would rapidly bring an end to the See of Annaghdown.


A. Joyce, a native of Galway and member of one of the twelve tribes, was made Archbishop of Tuam and commanded all the following annexations to the Wardenship.


Oranmore and Ballinacourty were united to the collegiate church.


Rahoon was annexed, soon after followed by Moycullen


The vicarage of the parish of Skryne was united to the Galway institution , leaving the ancient and controversial diocese of Annaghdown no hope of ever being revived.

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