Tobermurragh, Tobar Mhuirbheach, Knockyclovaun
Townland: Knockyclovaun, Killaloe
Description of Holy Well and Landscape Setting
This holy well well is now contained in a large hexagonal shaped structure made of red bricks. Each side of the hexagon is about 1 metre wide, and the walls are about 1.7 metres high. It lies in marshy ground, close to Killaloe Pier. There is a constant flow of fresh water, exiting from a pipe at the bottom of the well. This water may be from an aquifer, an underground layer of rock that holds groundwater. The well has been incorporated into a small park or walking area.
Saint and Feast Day Associated with Holy Well
Tobermurragh is named after a relative of Brian Boru’s, possibly his son or grandson, both of whom were named in historical sources. This relative was Murragh or Murrough, possibly from the Irish ‘Murrchadh’. It is said that Murragh was baptized at this well. Tobermurragh is not a holy well as such, but was clearly cherished by the people of Killaloe. There is such a rich history of Brian Boru and his descendants in the area that the well could easily be assimilated into the local story.
Natural Heritage around the Holy Well
The immediate area around the holy well has wetland trees including alder, and some ferns. A raised platform allows people to move across the marshy ground. Murragh’s Well supplied the town of Killaloe with water before a piped water scheme came into operation. At the end of the nineteenth century the well was enclosed by a red-brick building, which can still be seen today.
Heritage Attractions Nearby
Killaloe on one side of the Shannon River and Ballina on the other bank makes for an interesting visit. Brian Boru’s Earthen Fort lies 500 metres east of the site and a 6 metre protruding rock, known as Aoibheall’s Sanctuary, is located in the hills above. Saint Molua’s Church can also be visited in Kilalloe town.
Killaloe is very firmly associated with the Dalcassian O’ Brien Clan. This was their principal homestead until they moved to Clonroad in Ennis.
Record of Monuments and Places Number