Cloontyconnaught Holy Well
Townland: Cloontyconnaught/Cluainte Connacht, Iniscaltra Parish
‘Cloonty’ is likely derived from ‘chluainte’ indicating ground of short marshy grass.
Description of Holy Well and Landscape Setting
This holy well is very difficult to find without local help to track it down. It is on the right of a gap between two grazing fields off the R352 road. It stands on the edge of a small stream, or possibly in the stream.
Local accounts state that monks on the island at Iniscealtra, a short distance from the well site on Lough Derg, came here to replenish their water supplies. They filled large wooden barrels which were sealed and towed to the island. There are two wells on Iniscealtra but these may have lacked the flow of water necessary to sustain a community.
Saint and Feast Day Associated with Holy Well
The holy well here may never have functioned as a place of pilgrimage. Its fame may be due to the fact that the monks from Iniscealtra came to the site for water. The saint most likely to have connections with the well would be Saint Caimín, who is strongly associated with Iniscealtra Island and the parish where the well lies.
Natural Heritage around the Holy Well
The well stands beneath a still healthy ash tree.
Heritage Attractions Nearby
Iniscealtra Island or Holy Island on Lough Derg is close to the area where the well is situated. Day tours are available from Mountshannon.
Cloontyconnaught Townland is situated right beside Cluainte Muimhneach (locally known as Clountymweenagh) Townland. The provincial boundaries of these townlands have shifted many times over the years and naming the townlands as such seemed to have been an effort to account for these changes.
Madden, G 2008, Inis Cealtra, Island of the Churches, Mountshannon
Various Authors, 1989-, Sliabh Aughty: East Clare Heritage Journal, East Clare Heritage, Tuamgraney Thirteen editions. ISSN 0791- 4571
Records of Monuments and Places Number