Photographer's Note

Pictured here is Roscommon castle, a huge and very dramatic castle just outside Roscommon Town which is situated to the west of the River Shannon.

It traces its history back to 1269 when it was built by Robert de Ufford, Justiciciar of Ireland. The lands it was built on were originally owned by an Augustinian priory which de Ufford seized.

When in its complete state, the castle was vast and quadrangular in shape. At each corner stood a huge D shaped tower, each three stories high as well as twin towers at its entrance. The entire site was enclosed by a really strong curtain wall.

Its history was a violent one and one of changing hands numerous times. Three years after its construction, it was taken by the Connacht King Aodh O'Connor and a mere eight years after that it was back once again in the hands of the English who fully restored it.

68 years later, in 1340 the O Connors once again took control of the vast building and this time they managed to retain ownership and control for more than 200 years.

In 1569 it became the property of the English Sir Henry Sidney and there it stayed until 1641 when parliamentarians took it. They held it until 1645 when Confederate Catholics seized it back.

In 1652 Cromwell's troops took control of the castle who removed the buildings vast fortifications so it could not be used in war against them. It finally burned to the ground in 1690 and fell into total decay.

Today, it can be explored from the beautiful Loughnaneane Park and playground. It is open to explore with access gained from the park itself. It is a beautiful addition to Roscommon town.

The name Roscommon derives its name from Coman mac Faelchon who had founded a monastery here in the 5th century. The wooded area near this monastery became known as St Comans Wood (Ros Comáin in Irish) and this was eventually Anglicized to Roscommon.

Thanks for looking!

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Additional Photos by Noel Byrne (Noel_Byrne) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4177 W: 26 N: 9240] (33774)
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