This town is situated on the southern bank of the river Ilen. Like the other towns in the district, it had formerly a considerable trade in the linen and woollen manufacture, but this is now extinct. It is at present a good business town, has clean streets, good houses, and some handsome public buildings. It is the largest town in West Cork, and is well situated for trade. The river Ilen is navigable for vessels of 200 tons to Old Court, two miles below the town. To the west of the town stood the old Abbey of Abbeystowry in which, Smith writes, “are several old tombs, and in particular a large one of the Roches.” Dive Downes tells us the rector demanded, as a burying fee in this place, “the second best suit of clothes of the dead man, or 6s. 8d. in lieu thereof.”

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Early Irish History and Antiquities, and the History of West Cork

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