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HISTORY OF BANDON
[Pages 43- 60] THE CHARTER-THE FIRST PROVOST AND BURGESSES-"NO PAPIST INHABITANT" TO DWELL WITHIN THE TOWN-THE PROVOST'S DAY-OUR TWO FIRST MEMBERS OF PARLIAMENT-BALLYMODAN CHURCH, ITS CLERGY, CHARITIES, MONUMENTS, ETC.
The Letters Patent incorporating Bandon bear date, Dublin, March 30th, "in the tenth yeare of oure reigne" (1613). "By these letters, all the inhabitants of said town and lands, for ever, shall, by means of these presents, be one body corporate and politic, in deed, fact, and name, by the name of the Portrief, Free-Burgesses, and Commonalty of the borough of Bandon-Bridge." They are addressed by James, "by the grace of God, of England, Scotland, France, and Ireland, defender of the Faith, &c.,." to all to whom these Letters Patent shall come, and are as follows:-
"Know ye that we, as well by the humble petition of the inhabitants of the village of Bandon-Bridge, county of Cork, as also for the inhabiting and planting of these parts, within the said kingdom, depopulated and wasted, and by these presents, doth appoint the village or villages, houses, tenements, &c., on both sides of the water running under the bridge, to be one entire and free borough; and henceforth to be called the borough of Bandon-Bridge."
Then comes the appointment of a portrief and burgesses, all of whom are named. Power is then given to return two members of Parliament; to appoint a commonalty; to appoint a court of record; provision made in case provost should die, &c. The provost was empowered to hold a court of record for recovery of debt, trespass, contract and personal demands whatsoever, not exceeding five marks sterling, on every Thursday; to appoint a clerk of the market, who shall assize bread, ale, and beer, and who shall not charge more than fourpence (Irish) for sealing (i.e. stamping) any barrel, peck, or other measure, or for sealing weights; jointly with the burgesses to make bye-laws; to have a guild mercatory; to chose proper officers, &c. The first portief or provost was Captain William Newce, and the other burgess were:-
|Edward Beecher||Christopher Lewis|
|John Walley||Stephen Skipwith|
|Richard Richmond, alias Skipward||Thomas Taylor|
|Thomas Adderly||William Walley|
|Nicholas Balcknell||William Cecill *|
Some of very first enactments of the free burgesses were directed against Papists† and pigs. Indeed, the Papists were treated even worse than the pigs. A pig may feed and snooze away in his owner's backside until the fat shook on his ribs; but there was no one to place a trencher before a Papist, or to ask him,, or even to permit him, to rest his weary limbs within the boundaries of the borough. It was decreed "that no Papist inhabitant shall be suffered to dwell within the town." there was also an ordinance "for the suppressing of hogs, swyne, and pigs openlye to passe and goe in the streets." As " the proprietors of suche cattle, eyther out or some neglect or wilful contempte, have not redressed the saide unsceemlinesse, ffor remedy thereof, it is decreed and established that henceforth, if, at any tyme, any hoggs, swyne, or pigs shall be found or observed to passe in the open streets of any parte of the borroughe, or shall be fedd, kept, or lodged nere unto the mansions or dwelling-houses of any of the inhabitants, but onelye in the farthest, remotest partes of the backsides of such as shalle keepe them." Should any of these regulations be broken, the proprietor of the cattle had his attention called thereunto; and if he did not "redress the mischief, then the saide hoggs, swyne, or pigs passing openlye, or inwardly fedd, kepte, or lodged, shall be fortiefied, and ramayne ot the use of the corporation, and bee disposed of as the provost or vice-provost for the tyme being shall think meete."
* The following is the bill of costs furnished to the corporation in connection with the Charter:-
|Paid the King's attorney-general||0||10||0||For copy of the King's letter||0||15||8|
|Draft of warrant for attorney||0||10||0||For entry of the King's letter||1||15||8|
|For the order of reference to the attorney-general, and entertaining thereof,.........||0||19||6||For report||0||10||8|
|For report to the lord-lieutenant and council||2||10||0||King's attorney -general||3||10||0|
|Paid at the castle for two orders||1||15||8||Attorney-generals clerk||0||10||0|
† The act excluding the Roman Catholics was more a matter of policy than of prejudice. The Irish were intensely hostile to the new settlers; and the latter thought it dangerous to leave them within the walls at night. It was not the effect of whim or spleen, says the author of Seasonable Advice, but was a necessary support for the infant colony.
The corporation devoted a great deal of attention to sanitary purposes. They insisted that the streets should be kept clean; that the water-courses should not be converted into open sewers; "and, because sundrye other nuisances are daylie used and committed by the inhabitants residing within the libertie of this borroughe, as well by directing soyle in the open streets there, as also in the water-courses, or small streams of water, now made and provided for their necessarye uses of household, which the passage in the saide street bye that means, and want of due riddance of the same, doe become most fowle and loathsome; and the saide water also no lesse putrified and unwholesome. Therefore, &c., it is hereby ordered and decreed that if any of the saide inhabitants shall be convyeted for any of the lyke nuysance or other whatsoever annoyances, either abroade or within theire several backsydes or dwellings, and shall not reforme same upon warning given, shall forfeite, severally and respectively, the sum of ivs. sterling for each nuisance or annoyance so by hyme done." In case the transgressor had no goods or chattles, he was "to be restrayned in the marshalsye of the saide borroughe; there to remayne without boyle or mainprise, according to the will and pleasure of the provost o the provost or vice-provost aforesayde."
The streets the authorities had resolved to keep clear as well as clean. There was a bye-law against the abuse of dogs; and no one but a freeman was permitted to buy or sell calves in the street, under a penalty of three shillings and fourpence for each offence. The houses in the streets were also looked after. No freeman was allowed to receive into his dwelling, under a penalty of forty shillings, any lodger, without first acquainting the provost; and landlords themselves were not permitted, under any circumstances, to let a house or a tenement to either a strumpet or a vagabond. Destitute people, who are to be found in almost every community, were not wanting in this; neither was their destitution overlooked or forgotten. The corporation were not half a dozen year in being, when a fund, called the poor man's box existed. It was supplied by "money received for judgments in court, and kept for use of the poor man's box." The following are the fines and penalties paid into it for the year 1619:-
|Of John Heard||0||0||20||An Irishman v. Dermod Coghlan||0||0||20|
|Richard Smith||0||0||20||Robert Smith v. Field Vegee||0||0||20|
|Cunningham, an Irishman||0||0||20||Richard Glyn v. John Braly||0||0||20|
|Thomas Porter v. Edward Turner||0||0||20||Randall Fenton v. Margaret Alleyn||0||0||20|
|Newee v. Mat Ellis||0||0||20||--- Battyn v. Edward Nicolls||0||0||20|
|Richard Kingston v. Edward Porter||0||0||20||John Berry v. Balcknell||0||0||20|
|Richard Crofte v. Henry Johnson||0||0||20|
In 1622 a common council, consisting of twelve members, was appointed. They were chosen by the freemen; and form their ranks the burgesses were to be elected, and from the burgesses, the provost. It was, therefore, necessary from this year to be a common councilman before either of the other two dignities could be obtained. The installation of the provost was one of the great events of the year. What lord mayor's day is to the Londoners, provost's day was to the Bandonians, and something more; for our townsmen enjoyed a luxury to which the inhabitants of the great metropolis are strangers. The London mob cannot cuff their chief magistrate to their liking. Not so the Bandon mob, as they exercised their privilege in a way the reverse of the method adopted by modern humanity for displaying its affection or dislike. An unpopular magistrate was permitted to perambulate the streets alone and unheeded. No one would stir a step to give him a dig in the ribs, or strike him on the back or shoulders, or even fling a fistful of coarse flour into his eyes.
The provost was elected at midsummer, and entered upon his duties at Michaelmas. Duly attended by the constables of the north and south side, by the clerk of the market, the bell-ringer, and his friends, he used to walk round the borough boundaries, proclaiming the jurisdiction of the corporation. His worship and his officers all wore new suits of clothes on the occasion; and during the procession, if the new chief magistrate was well liked, he and his staff were accompanied by a crowd of the townspeople, who pelted his worship with handfuls of coarse bran. They took especial delight in showering bran all over his new robes. This was done to some extent as an amusement, but generally to signify that they hoped his year of office would turn out a year of abundance. If he happened to be particularly popular, by blinding him altogether they hoped to let him see how they esteemed him. They must have thought that by throwing dust in his eyes they would render him more clear-sighted, and thus afford him a better view of the various objects likely to attract his magisterial vision. Upon reaching his own house, it was customary for him to stand forth, in all the flour of his popularity, and, in all likelihood choking with emotion and bran, he used to thank them over and over again for the many striking manifestations of their approbation; and would tell them, probably with more truthfulness than is usual on those occasions, that he hoped he would never die until he had repaid them for the great favour they had that day conferred upon him.
We have said before that power was given to the burgesses to return two members to Parliament They soon availed themselves of this privilege; and they sent Sir Richard Morrisson, Knt, (privy councillor, and vice-president of the province of Munster), and William Crow, Esq., of Crow's Nest, Dublin (keeper of the Writs, and chirographer of the Common Pleas), to represent them in the new Parliament, which was to hold its first sitting on the 18th of May, A.D. 1613. For seven and twenty years the faithful Commons had not assembled, and all Dublin ran to see the novel and imposing spectacle.
Amid a flourish of trumpets, Lord Buttevant advanced, bearing the sword of state. The Earl of Thomand followed, with the cup of maintenance; then came the peers of the realm and other notables; the clergy; the archbishops and bishops in their scarlet robes; at last of all, the Lord-Deputy, dressed in rich robes of purple velvet, which the King gave him, and mounted on a stately charger, trapped with a profusion of gorgeous decorations. The procession set out from the Castle, and proceeded to St. Patrick's cathedral, where the Protestant portion of the processionists listen to a sermon from Hampton, the Primate. Upon the conclusion of the service, they returned to the Castle; and then ensued a scene which must have impressed the minds of our young and legislators with notions widely a part from those with which man, in all ages, have invested the deliberations and decorum of the senate.
The house was a full one. There were two hundred and twenty-six members present, out of a total of two hundred and thirty-two. One hundred and twenty-five of these belonged to the English party, and one hundred and one to the Irish. The English wished to place Sir John Davis in the speaker's chair, and the Irish preferred it should be occupied by Sir John Everard. Upon a division, it was found that Davis was elected by a majority of twenty-four. During the process of taking the votes, the Irish party, who guessed how the voting would turn out, had resolved to take Time by the forelock, by placing their own candidate in the coveted seat. But that English party had no idea of allowing themselves to be tricked. They told Everard that if he did not vacate, "they would pluck him forth." Nevertheless, he clung to the chair still; whereupon Wingfield, St. John, and some others, lifted up Davis bodily, and placed him in the spurious chairman's lap. Perceiving that Davis's colleagues were not to be bullied out of their rights, Everard's friends gave way; and catching Sir John by the collar of his coat, they lifted him out of his uneasy seat. He hobbled out of the house, as well as the sprained leg, which he had received in the fray, would permit; and joined the rest of his party, who had walked out indignantly in a body.
Although the senior member, Sir Richard Morrisson-admitted a member of the King's Inns in 1610-was vice-president of the province of Munster, where he must necessarily have many important duties to discharge, yet he found time to attend to his parliamentary duties also. He was chairman of a committee "to enquire into the fees that were charged by the judge's clerks;" and at another time he appears, with eleven others, sitting in committee on a bill entitled , "An Act to assure the lands of Pier's Laeye to the Sir Thomas Standish."
Mr. Crow, our junior representative,-who build a snug residence for himself near Trinity College, Dublin, which he very appropriately called the "Crow's Nest," and which is memorable as being the house where Sir William Petty accomplished his colossal labour, The Down Survey,-did not devote much of his time to his parliamentary duties. Even still, the Crow's Nest leaves a trace of its former being behind it, in Crow Street-a street which derives its name from, and occupies the site of, the old Rookery. Mr. Crow, although he lived near the house, does not appear as often in its journals as his colleague. He sat with eight other members in committee on "a bill against secret of outlawries," and upon some others.
O'Sullivan, a county of Cork man, and a grandson of Dermod O'Sullivan, Prince of Berehaven, writes ferociously against this Parliament. On the opening of it, says he, Lord Buttevant carried the sword before the Deputy to the church, to hear the blind ministers of the devil. Again, "the Catholic bishops are excluded, and the heretic usurpers of their titles and sees vote in Parliament in their stead."
1613 - Inquisitions were first held in Bandon. It was usual in these days, when a tenant of the crown died, for the escheator to empanel a jury of the county to which the deceased belonged, or possessed landed property in, and enquire as to what lands he died seized of, and who were his rightful heirs. The enquiries were termed "Inquisitiones Post Mortem," and frequently escheats . There were upwards of one hundred and twenty of them held here,* principally before William Wiseman, eschaeter Domini Regis.
The first jury that sat in Bandon was in the cause of James Fitzwilliam Roche, September 10th, 1613; and the last was in Finin O'Driskeill's case, on the 15th of August, 1694. Among the names of those concerning whom the enquiries were held here, are to be found those of Lord Viscount Buttevant, in 1630; Lord David Barrymore, in 1630; John Lord Coursey, 1620; Lord Viscount Cartie, April 31st, 1620; Lord Charles Cartie, September 31st, 1620; Walter Coppinger, Miles, 1639; Lord Viscount Fermoy, September 31st, 1639; John Lord Baron Kinsale, 1639; Kildare Gerald Comes; Randal Hurly, 1631; Richard Aldworth, 1630, &c, &c. The reports were generally in Latin . We give the two following as specimens:-
Inq'. Capt. apund de Bandon-Bridge in com. Corke quarto die Octobr' Anni regni dni Caroli, &c., decimo quinto, Coram William Vicecomit Sarsfeild de Killmallocke et aliis p. sacrum p. box, &c., qui dic' quod Donnell O'Hearlihy nup de Ballyvorney in com' pred' seitus fuit de feodo de le carrucat' terr' de Ballyvorney pred' val' per anni decem solid'. Et sic inde seitus existens obiit sic inde seitus in anno dni 1637. Et quod Will' McDonnell O'Hearlihy est ejus fil' et heres. Et quod idem Willus fuit plue etatis et maritat' temppore mortis pris suc pd' Postremog Tur pred' dic' quod oia p. miss tempore mortis p. fate Danial tenebrant' de rege nune in capite per service' mil'.
Inq'. Capt'. anno regni dni Caroli, &c., sexto, quarto et decimo die August coram William Wiseman qui die quod Richus Aldworth nup de Newmarket co com Cork, Miles, Seitus fuit de Feodo de Maner Castra Vill et terr de Newmarket p. contin quatuor decem earrucat terr et val p. ann Septem libr. Et de Lismul-cynyn contin quatuor carrucat terr et val p. annum quadragint solid. Et Coolmoata cont tres carrucat terr annui valor triginti solid. Et quod Richus Aldworth mil sie inde seit existens omia. p. miss dimisit qui busdam Johni Veale tune av modo mil Rico Bettesworth et Thomas Searle gen; also to Jephson and Hyde.
* See Catalogue of Inquisitions preserved in Court of Chancery; also Inquisitions themselves, Record Tower, Dublin Castle.
1614 - The old Protestant church of Ballymodan was built. It consisted of a nave forty feet long by twenty feet wide, and (at western end) a tower sixty feet in height. In the tower were too large windows, one over the other; and in the northern wall of the church itself, two windows twenty feet high by ten wide, a doorway twenty feet high by ten wide, and over the doorway a square window ten feet high by ten wide. At the east end of the nave was the largest window, which was thirty feet high and fifteen broad. Previous to this church's erection, the Protestants of Ballymodan worshipped in the church which had belonged to the Roman Catholics, and which was situated in the old graveyard, at the top of Foxe's Street, in the Irish-town.
Tradition is fully corroborated on this subject, by an official document which records the depositions of Mr. Woodner, Samuel Coombes, and others, "who, being antient men, deposed on their own knowledge, that the parish church stood in part of the said Irish-town, and that all the inhabitants of Bandon-Bridge (on the south-side) went to the said parish church, they're being none other parish church save in the said Irish-town; which was likewise confessed by the defendants. And also that some of the burgesses nominated in the Patent, viz:-Stephen Skipwith, Thomas Taylor, and William Cecill, worshipped in the same, they at the south-side."
The inhabitants grew dissatisfied with the distance of the old church from their homes. To quote their own words, "they thought the said parish church too remote from the town and the other plantations;" and were naturally anxious to have a church in which none ever worshipped but those of the purified faith, just like there fellow-townsmen had on the opposite side of the river. On applying to Henry Beecher, he granted them a site for the new church "in the seigniory of Castle Mahon, without the town part of the tenement of the said Henry Beecher, of Castle-Mahon," merely reserving to himself a space in the new church for a seat.*
* A portion of the space reserved by Beecher was subsequently given for a seat for the provost during his official year, and the rest was assigned by him to his son-in-law, Charles James, Esq., who was living at Castle-Mahon in 1631, and by whom it was sold; with the Castle-Mahon estate, to Francis Bernard, Esq., ancestor of the Earl of Bandon.
It was built by contributions. Some quarried the stone; others drew them; more felled and fashioned the timber; and many gave money. Amongst the latter was Lord Cork, who tells us in his diary, under date September 10th, 1614, "I gave my year's rent of my parsonage of Ballymodan, as a help towards the building of the new church at Bandon-Bridge."
It would seem that the daily increasing number of the settlers soon required that the church accommodation should be extended; and it is highly probable that the transepts and chancel were added by Lord Cork* when he became owner of the incorporated town of Bandon (south-side) by deed of feoffment, from Henry Beecher, dated May 2nd, 1619.
The enlarged building was a plain, unpretending structure; and was entered by a porch, over which was the date of the church's erection in 1614. Inside, it was gloomy and dark. The floors of the nave and transepts were covered by huge high-backed seats, large enough for the owner and his family to stretch at full length and take a comfortable nap, in case the homily was wearisome or too long. At the west window of the nave, and almost touching the ceiling, was the organ, in a galley set apart for it and the choir. Underneath this was another gallery, which formed a portion of the large galley which ran along the northern and southern walls of the nave. The transepts also contained a gallery each. Although to modern eyes this sombre, prim old edifice, with its box-stall pews and solemn-looking walls, would seem fit only to be occupied by a serious people, yet such was not the case.
In the olden times this was our fashionable church. It was here the provost sat, with the insignia of his office lying on a scarlet cushion† before him.
* Lord Cork speaks of having completed Ballymodan Church, and also Kilbrogan.
† After the battle of the Boyne, the cushion was always of orange velvet, bound with the orthodox blue.
In an adjoining seat sat the governor of the town; and in various portions of the building were the bright uniforms and the glittering accoutrements of the officers belonging to the various regiments that were quartered here. And many a gay gallant, with the flowing curls of his powdered wig streaming over the collar of his gilt-edged coat, and wearing an ivory or a steel-handled rapier by his side, strutted up the flagged aisle,-holding his cocked hat lightly between his jeweled fingers, and looking approvingly on the folds of the ample frill which over-lapped his embroidered wastecoat, or at the Mechlin lace ruffles which encircled his wrists; then when the seated, instead of reading reverentially the lessons of the day, he chose rather to exchange furtive glances with the young lady in the big-hooped petticoat, in the gallery. And when the service was over he escorted her home, or walk by the side of some other fair favourite, whose gold-clocked to stockings, or whose red-heeled shoes, proclaimed her as one of the belles of the day.
On the 1st of November, 1846, the Hon. and Rev. C.B. Bernard, a descendant of the nobleman to whom Ballymodan Church was so much indebted, preached the last sermon the congregation was ever destined to hear within its walls. The text was, "By the river of Babylon there we sat down. Yea, we wept when we remembered Zion." A crowded and attentive audience listen to the powerful and impressive discourse which followed.
The foundation-stone of the new church, dedicated to St. Peter, was laid with appropriate ceremonial, by the Earl of Bandon, on the 9th of March, 1847; and the church itself was opened for divine worship on the 30th of August, 1849, by Bishop Wilson. It is a large and handsome structure of the decorated style of Gothic architecture, and consists of a spacious nave, with two aisles, two transepts (north and south), a chancel and vestry-room . On its north-western extremity is the quadrangular tower, from the top of which a most extensive view of the town and surrounding country is obtained. The lower windows of the church are large, with pointed arches, and divided into three lights by stone mullions. Those of the clerestory consist of two lights, and have flattened elliptical arches. The interior is spacious and imposing. The eight pointed arches, by which the aisles communicate with the nave, stand upon clustered columns of great beauty, and are of a commanding character; whilst the three noble arches which span the entrance to the chancel and transepts are colossal in their proportions, and will not fail to impress the mind of the spectator with their loftiness and grandeur. The roof of the nave and the other portions of the buildings are of stained oak, and lean for support on trusses, resting on corbels of cut stone. The window of the chancel, the upper portion of which is of elaborate tracery, is divided into five lights by four stone mullions. There's also a large window at the western end of the nave, but it is almost concealed by the organ -a magnificent instrument, presented to the parishioners by the Honorable and Very Reverend Richard B. Bernard. The transepts, which are of similar height to the nave, contain a gallery each, and our lighted by windows of considerable size.
The church contains many monuments. Against the south wall of the nave (west and) is a fine monument, by Flaxman, to the memory of Francis Bernard, Esq., one of the judges of the Court of Common Pleas in the reign of Queen Anne. On a marble tablet, in Gothic characters of raised brass-gilt, is the following inscription:-"Francis Bernard, Esq., Obit Jun XXIX. MDCCXXXI. Ætatos. Su??????
The figures at the side, composed of white statuary marble, are of life-size. That on the right represents Justice, in which countenance the stern requirements of duty are blended with co-mingled feelings of thoughtfulness and commiseration. The goddess is in a sitting posture, and has in the right hand a drawn sword. The elbow of the left arm rests on the knee, and the open hand supports the chin and side-face. On the left is Minerva, helmeted, and reclining on her ægis, on which is the dying head of Medusa, twined with living serpents. In the south aisle (west) is a beautiful wrought altar-tomb of Caen stone, to the memory of James, Earl of Bandon. It is from the chisel of Richardson, of London, and exhibits a full-length figure of the earl, robed, in a recumbent position; the head rests on a cushion; at the feet is a coronet. On three sides of the tomb are shields of arms; and on the side fronting the nave is the coat of arms of the Bernards, with supporters, surmounted by an earl's coronet. On the corresponding part (opposite side) a long inscription records the honours and virtues of the deceased peer.
The epitaph commemorates "his devoted piety, his zeal in the extension of the gospel of his Saviour, his self-denying liberality in the cause of scriptural education, and his munificence in aid of the funds raised for the erection of this church." On one side of the inscribed tablet-on which is a cinerary urn-is the figure of an angel in alto-relievo, pointing triumphantly to the words-"Go and do thou likewise." On the other side-the figure of a boy kneeling, also in high relief. Near this is a decorated tablet to the memory of Francis B. Sweeny; and in the south aisle are handsome white marble monumental slabs to the memory of John Shine, George Thomas, several members of the Honour family, and to the daughters of the first Earl of Bandon. Close to the gallery of the south transept is a white marble slab to the memory of Mary Synge, wife of Rev. George Synge, rector of Kilbrogan. She died November 23rd, 1684. Mrs. Synge was the daughter of Thomas Hewitt, Esq., of Clancoole, and her husband was the third son of George, Lord Bishop of Cork. The following lines were inscribed beneath a shield on which the family arms were emblazoned, and which formerly stood beneath the west door of the south transept:-
"Below-the pride of ancestors-there lies,
Mouldered in dust, death's lovely sacrifice-
Her parent's darling, and her husband's pride-
Whence she was once, a daughter and a bride.
Lovely without, but fairer much within,
Her virtues daily triumphed over sin;
Thus ripe for nobler joys, she swiftly fled
To the immortal living, from the dead!
Underneath lies interred the body of Mrs. Mary Synge, &x., &c.
If grief could speak my loss, or tears retrieve,
Thy weeping monument I'd ever live."
The floor of the chancel contains no less than sixteen tablets of variegated marble to various members of the house of Bernard. On the north wall of the chancel is a monument in the decorated Gothic style, to Francis, Earl of Bandon. The base is supported by a double-headed Prussian eagle, crowned, holding a shield with the Bernard's crest. Above the buttresses is an embattled canopy, bearing the earl's arms quartered with those of Boyle, with the stag and unicorn supporters in alto-relievo. The epitaph is in Gothic characters, with illuminated capitals. Alongside this is a monument in similar Gothic style, to the Honorable Francis Bernard, lieutenant 9th Light Dragoons, who died whilst with his regiment on active service in Portugal. On the opposite side is a monument also in Gothic characters, to the Honorable Henry Boyle Bernard (fifth son of Earl Francis), cornet 1st Dragoon Guards, who was killed at the battle of Waterloo, on the memorable 18th of June, 1815; and to the east of this is a spacious monument to Catherine Henrietta, Countess of Bandon, daughter of Richard, Earl of Shannon, with an inscription by the late Rev. Dr. Lovett, D.D. Upon the east wall, near gallery of north transept, is a monument, with the representatives of the burial of Christ, in relief; underneath which is an epitaph to the memory of Thomas Revill Guest. At the south side of the choir, (east end) is an octagonal limestone font, thus inscribed :- "Lavaet Mundas Esto, R.G.M.Y.J.H. Wards 1719." On the flat rim :- :M.Y., 1719, J.H."
Ballymodan was anciently called Bally-budan ( that is the place of the little boat). By the latter name it is mentioned in the list prepared by order of Pope Nicolas the Fourth, A.D. 1291; and in which it is rated at seven marks a-year. The parish is a vicarage with cure. It is three and a half miles long by two broad, and contains 7,820 acres. In 1860 the vicar's rent-charge was three hundred per annum. He is also entitled to the rent of ten statute acres of the old glebe land-no residence. Protestant population in 1831 was 2,264; and in 1860, 1,550. in the latter year, also, 162 children attended the schools. The Parish Register does not commence until 1695. The first entry under the head of marriages is dated June 16th, 1695; and records that, on that day, Richard Maddox was married to Sarah Bacchus. Under births, same year, we find Robert, son of Pentecost Tyler; Mary, daughter of Edward Bennett; and under same heading next year (i.e. -1696), Alexander, son of Edward Collyer, quaker. Collyer, the Register states, was admitted in the presence of many persons. In 1699, according to Dive Downes, th church was in good repair; there was a sermon every Sunday, very few Papists in the parish, and the sacrament four times a-year. The following is a list of the births, deaths, and marriages to be found in the Registry Book* for several years, beginning with 1695, and ending with 1830:-
* The Registry Book does not contain all the marriages and births in the parish. A great many of the inhabitants were Presbyterian; and many of them were married and had their children baptised by their own minister.
|1696||44||28||7||1709||50||38||10||1780||very badly kept|
* In 1770 thirty-six out of the entire members were privately baptized.
1591 - John Newman was vicar of Ballymodan. He was also vicar of Brinny. The rector was Nichoals Thornby. It was also stated in a M.S., same date, that "Rectorian de Ballimodan soect, ad ab, de Tracton vicar ibm Nicholaus Tomkins." Another portion of the same document says, "Ecclia de Balliymodan Nieh. Thomkyns vic ejusdem Rich. Newman."
1615 - Robert Sutton, vicar. "Rectoria speetant ad Abbathiam de Tracton." The vicarage was valued at seven pounds per annum. Sutton held also the vicarage of Kilbrogan and Desertserges.
1628 - Thomas Weight, vicar. In 1630 the cup at present in use was presented. It is thus inscribed:- "The Parish Church Cup of Ballymodan, in Bandon-Bridge. Bought in the year 1630. William Newce, William Newman Churchwardens."
Also a small silver paten, engraved with the town arms. From all we can learn, this is the oldest church plate in use within the three diocese. At all events, it is the most ancient gift presented by the Protestants to a Protestant parish church, not only in this county but, probably in all of Ireland. In 1634 the vicarage had increased in value to forty pounds per annum. In 1639 the lay proxy for Ballymodan was the widow Turner, who paid three shillings and sixpence yearly. Weight had a son (Rice Weight), who was for some time a curate in Bandon; and whose son Thomas, "who served a hard apprenticeship to a clothier in Bandon," became a conspicious member of the Society of Friends, and was the author of the History of the Quakers in Ireland - the first work in connection with that body which appeared in this county. Mr. Weight, who came here from Guilford, in Surrey, was ordained deacon and priest by John, Bishop of Oxford, in 1619. He was rector and vicar of Aghlishdrinagh, in Cloyne, prebendary of Kilnaglory, and prebedary of Kilmaedonagh. The year he obtained the vicarage of Ballymodan the Chapter elected him dean of Cork, but the Crown set the appointment aside.
1662 - Henry Parr, vicar. He was also rector and vicar of Rathclarin, and vicar of Templequilan. In 1666 he was appointed rector and vicar of Skull.
1666-7 - Peter Hewitt, vicar, upon the resignation of Parr. In 1675 Hewitt became chancellor, and in 1710, precentor of Cork.
1675 - Hugh Jenkins was vicar. Also vicar of Rathelarin, Cannaway, and rector of Ardnegihy. In the margin of the Visitation held in 1679, opposite to his name, is the remark-"Itræ ord. desunt."
1680 - John Tom, was vicar. He was rector and vicar of Cannaway, vicar of Rathelarin. In 1688 he became vicar or Kinsale, which he retained until his death; holding along with it the prebendary of Desrtmore, When James the Second landed in Kinsale, amongst those who waited on that worthy specimen of Divine right, and bid him welcome, was the quondam vicar of Ballymedan. Mr. Tom (who was an M.A. of Peter House, Cambridge) married Mary [name not known], and had issue of four children. She died in 1692. He married secondly, in less then three months afterwards, Deborah Burrowes, widow, by whom he had three sons and one daughter He died in 1717, and was buried in Kinsale Church.
1681 - Hugo Jenkins was restored. He was again deprived in 1685.
1686 - Paul Duelos, A.M., vicar of Ballymodan. In 1688 he was admitted to the prebendary of Island, diocese or Ross. Duelos was of an eminent French family, who came to Ireland from Mentz, Department Moselle, upon the revocation of the Edict of Nantes. He was priested at Cork, September 21st, 1684. He married Frances Massiott, of Shandon, Cork, in 1682, and had five daughters. He died in 1717 or 1719.
1692 - Richard Goodman, vicar, upon the resignation of Duelos. He was son of the Rev. Thomas Goodman, precentor of Ross. He was born in 1657. He married Hannah [name not known]. From 1682 to 1691 he was one of the vicars-choral of Cork. In 1687 he was licensed to the curacy of St. Michael's. From 1689 to 1695 he was rector and vicar of Kilcully. From 1692 to 1696 he was vicar of Rathclairn; and from 1692 to 1737 vicar of Ballymodan. He was prebendary of Killanully from 1696 to 1718; and from 1696 to 1737 he was rector of Knockavilly and vicar of Brinny. From 1705, until his death, he was rector of Kilowen. In addition to his Cork livings, he was prebendary of Rath, in Killaloe. There was an assault committed on Mr. Goodman by Alderman Robert Rogers, of Cork, which was enquired into by the Ecclesiastical Court. The flagon at present in use in Brinny Church was presented to it by Mr. Goodmanm, in 1721. It bears the following inscription:- "Deo Sacrum. In unsum Ecclesiæ parochialis de Brinny. Ex dono richi Goodman ibidem Vicarii. Anno Redemptionis, 1721." Also a Paten, "impensis Richardi Goodman." He presented two flagons to Ballymodan parish. On one is:- "The gift of Richard Goodman to the church of Ballymodan, in Bandon. And He took the cup and gave thanks; and give it to them, saying, drink ye all of it. -Math xxxi. 27." On the other:- "The gift of Richard Goodman to the church of Ballymodan, in Bandon. The cup of blessing, which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? -1. Cor. x. 16."
His father, who died in 1681, had six sons and two daughters. One of the sons-namely, Thomas- was a vicar-choral of Ross, where he was licensed to keep school at his residence in the churchyard. When Richard's wife Hannah, died, she was buried in a vault at Ross Cathedral, and it was to his house that lady went on being aroused from the state of catalepsy in which she lay, by the effort of the sexton to remove a diamond ring from her finger. He died in 1737.
1737 - William Reader, vicar. In 1741 Reader became vicar of Kinsale; and in 1745 archdeacon of Cork.
1741 - Piercy Meade, Vicar, upon Reader's resignation. In 1745 Meade became vicar of Kinsale.
1745 - William Martin, A.M., vicar, upon Meade's resignation. In 1747 Martin and his curate, John Smith,* appeared before the bishop, who decreed that in future £45 per annum should be paid to Smith, in quarterly instalments, the stipend heretofore being too small for so laborious a cure." Mr. Martin was son of James Martin, of Bandon, merchant, who was provost of the town in 16399, and again in 1713, 1721, and 1724. He entered Trinity College, Dublin, in 1722. In 1726 he obtained a scholarship, and was subsequently A.M.. Previous to his appointment to Ballymodan, he was curate of Templeiomalus, Templequinlan, and Kilnagross; and in 1737 was curate of Abbeymahon, which impropriate cure he held until his death in 1750. In his will he mentions his brother Edward, provost of Bandon in 1749, and his brother Richard. Administration was granted to the Rev. William Ellis, the husband of his sister Judith, in trust for Ann, daughter of his brother Edward.
* John Smith was curate from 1746 to 1749. On the 2nd of June, in the latter year he was appointed treasurer of Cork. He obtained a scholarship in Trinity College, Dublin in 1736; was priested in Cork in 1742; and same year he married Elizabeth Lucas, of Desertserges, by whom he had female issue.
1750 - John Dennis, A.M., vicar, upon the death of Martin. In 1776 he became treasurer of Cork. He married Mrs. Elizabeth Bevan, of Kinsale, by whom he had a daughter, Jane, who was married in Ballymodan Church, December 11th, 1768, to James Hussey, Esq., cornet 3rd Light Dragoons. Mr. Dennis died in 1787.
1776 - John Lord, A.M., vicar, per. cess. Dennis. Mr. Lord was probably of the same family as Daniel Lord prebendary of Kilbrogan. He died in 1795
1795 - Henry Hewitt, A.M., vicar. In 1767 he was curate of St. Peter's; and in 1770 Thresher's lecturer in Cork. In 1771 he was vicar of Killaconenagh, in Ross. He was buried in March 26th, 1803. The Parish Registry contains the following entry in the hand writing of Mr. William Gorman, the curate:-"Reverend Henry Hewitt, the truly worthy and respected vicar of this parish; lamented by all who knew him." In 1768 Mr. Hewitt, on the 12th of December, married Susan Judith Browne. The ceremony was performed in Kilbrogan Church by the Rev. Michael Tisdale.
1803 = Charles Hewitt, A.B., vicar, brother of his predecessor, was ordained deacon in Dublin in 1761. He was curate of Murragh in 1775. In 1796 he became rector of Ardneghihy, and in 1803 vicar of Ballymodan.
1809 - Robert Montgomery, vicar, upon the death of Hewitt. He resigned in 1813.
1813 - Joseph Jervois, vicar. He was subsequently rector of Ardagh, in Cloyne, where he died in 1856. Upon his leaving Ballymodan, where he was a great favourite, he was presented with a very flattering address. He was provost of Bandon for many years.
1825 - Arthur Knox, vicar. He resigned in 1835, and went to England.
1835 - Henry Fitzallen McClintock, A.B., vicar. In 1846 he became rector and vicar of Kilmichael.
1846 - John Bleakley, A.M., vicar. He obtained his A.B. in 1826; was priested in Cork in 1831; was curate of Kilgarriff, Ross, for some years, and of the Holy Trinity, Cork, in 1843.
The charities of Ballymodan consists of:-
Ten pounds (Irish) per annum, bequeathed by Thomas Harrisson, charged on lands. The amount distributed equally between Ballymodan and Kilbrogan. Two pounds annually, left by Alderman French, of Cork, to the poor of Ballymodan. Ten pounds eight shillings per annum, left by Colonel Thomas Beecher, of Sherkin Island. To be expended at the rate of four shillings a week, in bread, for the poor of Ballymodan. One thousand pounds. Interest thereof to be divided between poor of Ballymodan and Kilbrogan. Four hundred pounds left by William Moxly. Interest to be divided between poor of Ballymodan and Kilbrogan.
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