Muckinish Castle, Clare, Ireland

Muckinish Castle is an unusual sight, only the south wall and parts of the east and west survive, the north wall has entirely collapsed into mounds of rubble and Pouldoody bay below. The castle was first mentioned in the Annals of the Four Masters in 1584 as the location where Turlough, the son of Owny, son of Mcloughlin O’Loughlin (owner of the castle) was taken to prison and later put to death in Ennis. It appears that some elements of the castle may have been adapted at a later date, the three-light mullioned window dates from the 17th century. Muckinish was a five story tower house, with a machicolation jutting out of the parapet of the structure. My visit was much improved by the company of two dogs from one of the nearby houses who sit guarding the castle!

GPS: 53.139, -9.10255

7 thoughts on “Muckinish Castle, Clare, Ireland

  1. I was just in Clare myself last week walking the Burren trail. Castles like that are everywhere, aren’t they? I saw Newtown castle, it’s now an art school, and Gleninagh castle is very impressive.

  2. My dad grew up in the little house adjacent to the castle from 1922 -1934 long before the row of holiday homes was built. There were oyster beds in the little bay where the tide rushes in an out at a pace. My dad said at one time the oysters were sent in barrels by boat to Galway and thence to Dublin by train to arrive in time for lunch in the oyster bars.

  3. My mothers family owned the farm next door and spent the summers of my youth using the castle ruin as my playground (when it wasn’t raining). The row of holiday homes are where the old farmhouse and dairy sheds used to be.

    • My dad lived there as a child from 1922 till 1934 when, on turning 16, he went to Dublin to work in his uncle’s pub. The farm and much of the surrounding land,was owned at that time by Michael Curtain and my grandfather worked as his manager. One of his jobs was collecting rents from the tenants, but in those times Ballyvaughan was pitifully poor and for the most part the tenants, working their small plots of thin rocky soil, could hardly afford to feed themselves let alone pay rent. Michael Curtain became bankrupt and from some old documents we found, we saw my Grandfather was listed as one of the creditors, being owed over £600 in unpaid wages, which must have represented several years wages!

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