TOMBSTONES AND INSCRIPTIONS Recorded by Beryl F.E Moore M. B. & Mr. & Mrs Cawkhill 1974

RATHMORE DEDICATION is St. Lawrence of the gridiron and his festival day is 10th Aug.

THE HOLY WELL is situated in the narrow strip of wood behind the ruined church but even in Cogan’s day was very seldom visited on the saint’s vigil.  In recent years the trees were cut but the debris not gathered up so that what was a very pleasant walk is now an impossibility: however the well is little more than a muddy hole.

A LARGE PILLAR STONE is to be seen in this parish where the 4 townlands of Rathmore, Rahony, Derrlangan & Tullanstown meet.  I was unable to ascertain any local memory of an historical event taking place at this point.

BOOK OF DARNLEY ESTATE MAPS. . . about 10 years ago I discovered that an elderly Athboy lady had the only copy of a very large volume of hand painted maps of the Darnley estate with every townland, avenue, byroad, boathouse, etc. clearly shown.  It was then 199 years old and in excellent condition.  It is now in the care of the National library, Kildare Street, Dublin. .  2 straight avenues to Rathmore Church are shown . . . the Western one started at the Athboy-Kells Road and covered the same area as the present road and path through the Deerpark field, while the Eastern one went across country to the Jamestown Road with a circular turning point for carriages at a halfway mark which exactly corresponds with the position of the present R.C Church and National School on the Navan Road.

The Deerpark is said to have had 2 or 3 fish ponds.

THE MOTTE AND BAILEY is situated beside the present Deerpark house on the Navan road.  The Motte still contains a considerable portion of the stone castle of Rathmore and presumably the farmyard represents the Bailey.  When the castle was accidentally burnt the Bligh family built a modern house on the Athboy-Trim road and called it Clifton Lodge because the 1st Bligh to be created Earl of Darnley married Theosodia Hyde daughter of the Earl of Clarendon of the barony of Clifton near Bristol.

BASE OF CROSS. . . This massive stone stands some 20 ft. from the churchyard gate and no one knows anything about the Cross that once stood in it.  There is a heap of loose stones nearby and a couple of trees which are thought to be all that is left of a former grotto.

4 BUTTRESSES are to be seen outside the S wall of the church.  

Tablets on S wall of Chancel beginning at Chancel-arch.

 Earliest date on stone given.

1)  BLIGH MONUMENT 1772 . . . The S window of the Chancel was built up so that this tablet could be inserted in front of it.  At the top is a carving of different weapons used in the English army at the period in question. . . 2 drums, bugle, canon and 6 canon balls, 2 different types of swords, 3 spears battle standard, battle axe, pot with flames and 2 powder horns (1 for keeping the powder in and one for measuring the amount of powder needed).  Underneath is the Bligh Coat of Arms showing the Cockatrice. “Beneath this monument are interred the remains of Thomas Bligh Lieutenant-General of his Majesty’s forces, General of Horse at the Battles of Dettingen, Val, Fontenoy & Melle, Commander in Chief of the British troops at Cherburg who after spending many years in the service of his country with unwearied application retired to a private life therein to prepare his old age for a change to a better state and to enjoy with unspeakable comfort the hopes of a happy immortality, born AD 1695 died Aug. the 17th 1775 aged 80 years.  In the same tomb lies his sister Catherine Lehunt who died April the 26th 1772 aged 84 years”.

The above Thos. Bligh was born in Rathmore Castle the son of Thos. Bligh M.P and Elizabeth Napier.  His eldest brother was created the 1st Earl of Darnley.  The General spent all his active life in the English army, never married and retired to Brittas near Nobber where a Mausoleum was erected in the grounds to his memory.  He left this property to a younger brother.  He set one field with huge Lime trees in clumps as he placed his men at the Battle of Cherburg which he commanded and won against considerable odds.  He called it Cherburg Wood and every month his batman and himself went to this field and went through the various movements of the battle.  The Bligh family were popular and liked by the common people and said to be good land-lords.  The Bligh Coat of Arms is AZ. Griffin Sergeant or, Between 3 Crescents AR, supporters 2 Griffins with wings expanded or, Ducally gorged and chained AS.  Crest is a Griffin’s head erased Or.  Bligh Motto is ‘Finem Respice’ which means ‘Look to the End’ (Burke’s Armory 1842).

2)  HOPKIN’S MONUMENT 1825 . . . “Sacred to the memory of Francis Hopkins of Mitchelstown Esqr. who departed this life Jany. 15th 1850, in full hope of joyful resurrection trusting alone in his Redeemer’s merits for salvation, therefore be ye ready for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh Matt. 24 V 44.  Also his infant daughter Mary Mabella who died Sept. 27th  1825.  Also to the memory of Mary his wife who departed this life June 28th 1858 aged 67 yrs.  Also William eldest son of the above Francis and Mary Hopkins who departed this life at Mitchelstown March 28th 1880 aged 62. I Thess. IV Verses 13 to 18”.  Curb on ground around the vault.

Monuments on Chancel floor

3)  BLIGH BOX TOMB . . . situated under No. 1 and is over the Bligh vault. A very worn Coat of Arms including the Cockatrice.  All the centre of this great stone is worn away and little or nothing of any inscription can now be seen or read.  Members of the Society for the Preservation of the Monuments of the Dead say they saw “Johannis Bligh AR. . .  “ John Bligh was a citizen of London and the first Bligh to come to Ireland and the founder of the family in this country.  He came as an agent to the adventurers after the 1641 Rebellion, but he later became an adventurer himself by subscribing €600 and got amongst other land the Rathmore property in 1657 formerly owned by the Plunketts.  He married Catherine sister of an Englishman Bishop Fuller and had only one son Thomas and 6 daughters.  Thomas died at Bath but was brought back for burial in Ireland.  He (Thomas) married Naper of Loughcrew’s daughter in 1736 and had 4 sons and 6 daughters.

4)  HOPKINS UPRIGHT STONE 1838 . . .  ‘Behold the Lamb of God’ around top of a full sunburst with sheep lying on a cross inside, with a Chalice on each side and well carved tassels.  “Erected by Mrs. Jane Hopkins to the memory of her dearly beloved husband Jacob Hopkins of Dunderry Co. Meath Esqr. who died on the 21st day of April 1865 aged 65 years.  Also to the memory of his father James Hopkins of Miltown in said county Esqr. who died on the 28th day of June 1838 aged 82 years and of his mother Mary Hopkins who died on the 9th of July 1840 aged 78 years.  May they rest in peace”.

5)  BARONESS EUGENIE PLUNKET 1893 . . . The inscription is on a marble tablet let into an upright stone in front of the E wall to the Rt. of the altar.  At top is a shield with Plunkett Arms (castle above a bend).  “Pray for the soul of Baroness Eugenie Plunket of Rathmore who died Jan. 13th 1893 at Neuf Chateau Castle near Liege, Belgium aged 83 years RIP”.

6)  PLUNKETT Slab 1485 . . . on the ground close to sedilia.  Plain in centre and has a Latin inscription around the edge in relief.  Translation according to Mems of Dead Vol. 7 Yr 1908. . . “Here lies Sir Alexander Plunkett Knight of Rathmore formerly Chancellor of Ireland, together with the Lady Anne Marward his wife who (He) died on the 10th day of the month of August in the year of Our Lord 1485.  On whose souls may God have mercy.  Have mercy on us O Lord, Have mercy on us.  Be Thy mercy done unto us, O lord as we have hoped in thee”.  These are the last 2 verses but one of the Te Deum.

7)  SIR FRANCIS HOPKINS 1814 . . .  On ground in centre of Chancel near the opening of the Chancel-Arch.  “Here lieth the body of Sir Francis Hopkins Bart. who departed this life on the 19th day of September in the year of our Lord 1814 aged 56”.

8)  WILLIAM HOPKINS OF FRAYNE 1855 . . . On ground in centre of chancel.  “Sacred to the memory of one who being dead yet speaketh in the hearts of all who knew him, this tomb is raised by his bereaved widow in remembrance of William Hopkins of Frayne County of Meath Esqr. who departed this life on the 12th day of June 1855 in the 57th year of his age deeply and universally lamented.  While mourning their irreparable loss in the tenderest and most beloved of husbands and fathers his afflicted family sorrow not without hope for if we believe that Jesus died and rose again even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with Him” I Thess. IV 14.

9)  O’REILLY 1822 . . . On ground in centre of Chancel next altar.  A cross on top with expanded ends.  “Erected by James O’Reilly of Navan Esqr. in memory of his beloved Mother Mary died 13th Aug. 1836 aged 49 years, and of his grandfather James died 22nd Octr. 1827 aged 92 years, also of his grandmother Anne died March 1822 aged 75 years.  May their souls rest in peace Amen”.

10)  PLUNKET 1531. .  On ground to N of Chancel.  A much broken and worn stone with some of the carvings almost gone.  The viewer must stand on the E side and face W to study this slab.  n each corner is the symbol of an Evangelist.

    Upper left – eagle of St.John                            Upper right – angel of St. Matthew

    Lower left – winged ox of St.Luke                   Lower right – winged lion of St. Mark

Round edge is inscription in Latin, while in the centre is a large cross with floriated ends on 4 steps with a crown of thorns around the bifrucation, some emblems of Our Lord’s passion appears on each side of this cross. . . on viewers left we get scourge, 3 dice, ladder, pillar of flagellation and cords, cock and pot, (the description of this emblem is ‘cock in full plumage showing tail and wings standing on a 3-legged skillet).  On viewers right- scourge, spear, hammer, seamless robe and pincers with 1 nail (the other 2 nails are one on each side of the crossbar of the cross).  Unfortunately the pot is now so defaced as to be almost invisible.  At the lower end of the slab is said to be 2 shields bearing the arms of the Plunkets Prestons and Molyneux, also a contracted form of these names over each; but none of this can now be discerned.  The latin inscription is said to refer to the death of Christopher Plunkett in 1531 and his wife Catherine Preston whose date of death is not given as she left Rathmore and married secondly Patrick White.  She was the daughter of Lord Gormanstown and her marriage to Christopher Plunket was childless.

Tombstones in Nave

11)  KNOWLES 1912. . . upright stone with small cross at top and flaming heart in centre.  “Erected in memory of Richard Knowles who died in June 1912 and his wife Catherinedied in Sept. 1919.  their sons and daughter James died in March 1938 John died in Feby. 1939, Bridget died in April 1940 and Patrick died in Feby. 1944 Richard Knowles died 1st Feby. 1951”.

12)  GROWNEY 1856 . . .  On ground a large slab near N door with a cross over IHS.  “This monument was erected to the memory of Owen Growney who departed this life on the 11th day of March 1856 aged 63 years.  Margaret O’Growney who died 16th April 1884 aged 44 years, her husband James O’Growney who died 29th Aug.1893 aged 63 years.  Their son Patrick who died 27th Nov. 1932 aged 67 years.  RIP”.

Tombstones on W wall inside church

Beginning at right and working towards left, these 5 headstones are attached to the W wall though all appear to be ordinary headstones intended to be erected at the head of graves.

13)  O’REILLY 1853 . . . Chalice on each side of top. ‘Ecce Agnus Dei’ above a lamb on a cross in centre.  “Erected by Andrew O’Reilly of Dublin in memory of his father William O’Reilly who died in 1844 aged 77 years, also of his mother Mary Maguire O’Reilly who died in 1853 aged 73 years RIP”.

14)  HEERY OF ATHBOY 1843 . . . pointed slab with cross above inscription.  “Sacred to the memory of Elizabeth Heery of Athboy who died 20th March 1843.  Also her sister Rose Fagan who died 14th July 1854”.

15)  SHERIDAN OF MARTINSTOWN 1857….  Large slab with Chalice and cross at top on each side.   Full sunburst around a cross and IHS.  ‘Gloria in Excelsis Deo’ above the Sunburst.  “Dedicated by John Sheridan of Martinstown to the memory of his beloved wife Etty Maguire Sheridan who departed this life 9th Feby.  1858 aged 63 yrs. and his daughter Elizabeth who departed this life 12th May 1857 aged 22 yrs.  RIP”.

16)  BRENNAN OF TRIM 1858. . .  Similar to No.15.  “Dedicated by Bernard Brennan of Trim to the memory of his beloved wife Jane Sheridan Brennan who departed this life 5th April 1858 aged 33 yrs and their two children Thomas and Lizzie who died young RIP”.

17)  MAGUIRE 1813 . . . GLORIA etc. around lower half of Sunburst which encloses a cross, IHS and heart, with Chalice on each side.  “Erected in memory of Mr. Thomas Maguire of Dressogue who depd. this life 29th March 1813 aged 78 yrs.  Also his son Philip who depd this life 18th April 1842 aged 65 yrs.  RIP”.

On W wall of porch outside N doorway is a tablet referring to the erection of it and the small pardon cross in the graveyard N of the sacristy. The following is the translation of the very abbreviated Latin by Mr. Joseph H. Moore . . . “Pray for the souls of Christopher Plunket of Rathmore soldier and Katherine Preston his wife who built the stone cross below the village in front of the graveyard, and the portico at the same place. 200 days indulgence is granted by 5 bishops in Provincial Council to all persons who shall say before the cross a Pater and Ave for the souls of the said Christopher and Katherine and their parents as often as occasion shall offer for ever AD 1500”


a) Head above W window at apex of arch is likely a female.  The W window was taken out and brought to Athboy and inserted as the East window in the Protestant Church along with the 2 heads that used to be at the ends of the arches I was told when I came to Athboy over 50 yrs ago.

b) Broken and defaced head outside on the N wall of the Sacristy about 11 ft. from the ground and 3ft. from the E end.

c) There are 3 heads outside the E window . . . one at the apex (similar to the one outside the W window) which is likely female and one at the bottom of each end of the arch. Both are crowned, that on the left seems to be female and has a chain and medallion round her neck while the one on viewer’s right is definitely male with drooping moustache and beard and appears to be old.I was told that this window was also taken down to be brought to Athboy church but Lord Darnley arrived home and was very angry and made the responsible persons put it back again.

Tombstones in East end of the Graveyard in rows from N to S

Row 1

18)  HALPIN OF MOONEYSTOWN 1931 . . . modern Celtic cross, flaming heart in centre and band of ivy leaves carved between cross and inscription.  “Mary Halpin died 1931 aged 65 yrs. her parents Patrick and Jane Manning, her husband Patrick died 1945, their daughters Annie 1947, Jane 1950, John 1966”.

Row 2            

19)  CAROLAN 1891 . . . Modern Celtic cross with Cross and HIS in centre and below a 4-petalled rose.  “Erected by Bernard and John Carolan Chicago in loving memory of their Mother Mary Carolan who died March 10th 1907 aged 65 yrs.  Their brother Michael who died April 15th 1891 aged 15 yrs.  Also Philip and Mary Carolan whose remains are interred beneath.  Also their father Patrick Carolan who died May 23rd 1909 aged 76 yrs.  Their brothers Hugh who died March 11th 1939”.

20)  SMITH OF CURLEYLAND 1954 . . . Modern stone. Mary Smith died 1954 and her husband Peter died 1954.

21)  HICKSON . . . no date on this Celtic cross. ‘Jesus Mercy’ and ‘Mary Pray’ around it and a fine crucifixion in the centre. Our Lord has long hair curling down his shoulder. The heads of the 4 nails (nearly as big as holly berries) are clearly shown in hands and feet.  The loincloth is knotted on the left hip (viewer’s right).  “To the memory of Isaac Hickson and his wife Sarah and family Thomas William Mary Joseph and Sarah.  God be merciful to their souls.  Erected by the sorrowing children Anne John and James Hickson.  RIP”.

22) SMITH 1867 . . . Plain slab with a Lamb on a cross.  “Erected by Michael Smith of Headfort in memory of his beloved father John Smith who died 22nd Feby 1867 aged 77 years “.

23)  SMYTH 1776 . .  . Plain slab with a stopperstone on each side.  Sunburst with Cross and IHS inside and ‘Gloria in Excelsis Deo’ underneath.  “Good Christians, your prayers are earnestly requested for the souls of the under named Thomas Smyth who died Feb. 25th 1780 aged 70 yrs.  Also his wife Rose Smyth who died 24th May 1776 aged 63 yrs. Erect by Patrick Smyth for him and his posterity.  Also one of his children John Smyth. Mr. Michael Smyth departed this life December 11th AD 1836 aged 37 years.  Also his beloved son Patrick Smyth who died December 15th 1831. May they rest in peace”.

24)  HELOW 1815 . . . Large heavy stone with ‘Gloria.’ around upper half of sunburst and in centre IHS and heart. On right (viewer’s) is a sheep carrying a cross while on the left is a dove sitting down with her head turned backward and an Olive branch in her beak held over her back.  A Lozenge border is carved above and on each side of the inscription.  On viewer’s left is a stopper stone with a cross and IHS on it.  “This Monument was erected by James Helow in memory of his father Edward Helow who departed this life May 15th 1820 aged 60 years.  Also his Mother Margr’t Helow who departed this life Octr 1st 1815 aged 50 y ears.   Also his brothers Patrick Helow who departed this life March 15th 1819 aged 33 years.  Also his sister Rose Helow who departed this life Septr 16th 1836 aged 47 years.  Also his brother William Helow who departed this life Decr 19th 1845 aged 40 years.  May they rest in peace”.

Tombstones on S side of Church with rows from Church to Circular path

Row 3

25)  PLUNKETT 1833 . . . Old stone with sunburst cross and IHS.  “Erected by Richd Plunkett in memory of his beloved Son Thos. Plunkett who depd this life Novemr 3rd 1833 aged 18 years. Who Christian like resigned his final breath and dying free from censure smiled at.  Dear Lord have mercy on his soul”.

Row 4

26)  KAIN OF RATAIN 1789 . . . Big tall old stone with curb.  Sunburst around Cross IHS and heart. ‘Gloria etc’. around upper half of Sunburst.  “This Monument was erected by Michl Kain in memory of his father John Kain late of Ratain who departed this life January 17th 1789 aged 62 yrs.  Also for his posterity.  The above Michael Kain died March 8th 1835, his wife Rose died April 21st 1863, also his sons John James Michael and Matthew who died abroad.  RIP”.  On a small slab placed in front of the above headstone we get “Patrick Kane died 1926, Mary Kane died 1949, Rose Kane died 1951”.

27)  McKIERNAN . . . No date could be read.  This is a large tabletomb standing on 6 pedestal stones and likely originally 1-1½ ft above ground level but not almost on the ground.  We found it almost completely covered with moss and grass.  The stone is not of good quality and having clay in contact with it for so long the lime has been absorbed and the sand left; so we failed to read most of it, particularly the lower half.  “Good Christians, your prayers are earnestly requested for the souls of the under-named.  Here lieth the body of Cormick McKiernan late of Moymet Esqr dedc…. ”  SMITH (6) & McCORMICK (13) open with the same words. The mems. of the dead saw “8 of his children”.

28)  THEMSELY & CUMMINS 1826 . . . This stone is broken in 2 pieces.  It was a large thick heavy stone.  The upper piece is much buried in the ground and tilting forward at such an angle as to make it very difficult to read.  The lower piece is a couple of feet away and has only one line of the inscription on it.  This stone is worthy of being re-erected as it contains some of the best carving in the graveyard.  At centre top is a good crucifixion, Christ has curling shoulder-length hair and a nimbus above his head, his arms and legs are straight, and the 4 nails and our Lords navel are clearly to be seen.  INRI is above Jesus’ head and a cross and IHS on each side along with a cherub’s head and outstretched wings.  ‘Holy Trinity one God have mercy on us’ is below the crucifixion.  “This monument is erected by Peter and Matthew Themsely . . .”.  On the other piece of stone we get “Peter Cummins July 1862”.  Garrett Ferrall stonecutter is at bottom of the stone.

29)  MC CORMICK 1806 . . . Large plain very wide slab with sunburst cross and IHS in centre, and a chalice with cross on top on each side.  ‘Gloria in Excelsis Deo’ around the top of the Sunburst.  “Erected by Mary McCormick in memory of her beloved husband John McCormick who departed this life 27th of September 1835 aged 37 years.  Also of his beloved Father Patrick McCormick who departed this life the 7th of December 1806 aged 56 years.  Also of his beloved mother Elizabeth who departed this life the 12th of September 1822 aged 65 years”.

Row 5            

30) McCORMICK OF RATHMORE 1816 . . . Large plain stone with semicircular Sunburst around Cross, IHS and Heart with foliage on each side.  ‘Gloria etc’ around top of Sunburst.  On viewer’s left of this motif we get a Dove picking up a leaf and a lamb carrying a cross; while on viewer’s right we get a Dove sitting on a bough with an Olive branch in her beak held over her back and a very small crude crucifixion showing the 12 ribs on each side and the navel. There are also 4 small cherubs one in each corner framing the above motif.  A diamond border is carved between the above motifs and the inscription.  “Remember man as you pass by.  As you are now so once was I.  As I am now you will be.  Think on that and pray for me”.  This monument was erected by Michael McCormick in memory of his beloved son James McCormick late of Rathmore who departed this life May the 12th 1832 aged 26 yr. also his brother Edward who departed this life Octr. the 22nd 1816 aged 9 years.  May they rest in peace.  Amen.  Mary Timmons died April 20th 1954”.  ‘Garrett Ferrall, Stonecutter’ at base.

31)  SMITH OF MOONEYSTOWN 1908 . . . Small modern Celtic cross with Cross Heart and anchor in middle. Erector’s father John died 1908, his mother Jane 1913, also his brothers and sisters.

32)  FOX OF MOONEYSTOWN 1898 . . . Modern white marble stone.  “Erected by Elizabeth Fox to her father and mother Wm and Mary Fox, her brothers Michael James Christopher and Owen.  Also Elizabeth Fox died 1898 aged 63 years”.  ‘J Wade, Berkeley St. Dublin’ at base.

33) CLARKIN OF JAMESTOWN 1855 . . . Plain slab with a piece broken off the top which was likely a small cross.  “Erected by Christopher P. and James Clarkin of New York in memory of their beloved Mother Mary Clarkin of Jamestown who departed this life May 7th 1855 aged 45 years, also of their brother Nicholas who departed this life February 7th 1870 aged 27 years.  Also their beloved Father Patrick Clarkin who died on the 6th of December 1883 in the 83rd year of his age”.

Row 6.           

34)  FARRELLY OF CLONYMORE – No date…  Large heavy stone.  ‘Gloria in Excelsis Deo’ around top of Sunburst with Cross IHS and Heart inside it. On viewer’s left is a Dove with her head missing owing to wearing of the stone.  On viewer’s right is a lamb bearing a cross.  A row of beading on top of the inscription.  “This Monument was erected by Nicholas Farrelly of Clonymore and late of Tulloughinstown for himself and his posterity and also for one of his children who died young.  May the souls of the faithful departed through the mercy of God rest in peace. Amen”.

35)  KEANE 1872 . . . Heavy plain stone. ‘Gloria etc’, Cross and IHS at top.  “Of your charity pray for the soul of Christopher Keane who died January 16th 1872 aged 84 years.  Also his son Thomas Keane who died young, erected by his beloved wife Anne Keane Mooneystown”.

36)  JONES 1791 . . . Heavy stone with Sunburst around Cross IHS and Heart pierced by 3 barbs.  A large Cherub’s head with outstretched wings on each side.  “Erd by Peter Jones in memory of his father Christopher Jones who di’d July 2nd 1791 aged 60 yrs.  Also his Mother Mary Jones Alias Cherlock who di’d March 27th 1783 aged 40yrs.  Likewise his sister Margery who di’d Dec. 4th 1777 agd. 13 yrs.  May the rest in peace”. An old-fashioned script used eg F for S, comma often used instead of E, C at start of Sherlock instead of S and The instead of they in last petition.

37)  BURN 1753 . . .  A much sunken small stone of an old fashioned type.  Scroll on top, with cross and IHS in centre.  “Mary Burn departed her life the 15th of September 1753 aged 48 years allso Peggy Moore and Richd Jones”.  This peculiar spelling of allso was found in Moy Summerhill as well.

Row 7.           

38)  BRADY OF CASTLETOWN ATHBOY 1799 & MURTAGH OF CASTLETOWN ATHBOY 1901 . . . Large triple tomb within a curb, 2 headstones (oneS crosses is a small slab with an inscription.  No. 21 is a high rectangular column with a cross fleury on top.  “Erected by John Brady of Castletown Athboy in memory of his beloved parents his mother Bridget Brady who departed this life January 14th 1845 aged 40 years and his father Edward Brady departed this life 4th Decr 1869 aged 74 years.  Also his sister Mrs. Anne Murtagh Castletown Athboy departed this life 17th Decr 1901 aged 68 years”.

39)  BRADY 1799 . . . This headstone is a plain old fashioned type with ‘Glory be to God on high’ around a Sunburst enclosing a Cross IHS and Heart.  On viewer’s left is a very small man’s head within a circle of rays and a blue-bell like flower.  Could this be the man’s head in the Sun motif?  On viewer’s right is a Dove surrounded by foliage with a leaf in her beak and an aster like flower nearby. “Erected by Cormick Brady in memory of his wife Anne Brady alias Tyrle who departed this life Marh 6th 1815 aged 56 years.  Also his brother Edward Brady departed this life Novr 4th 1799 aged 36.  O Lord have mercy on their souls amen”.

3 little tablets on the ground . . . Right one – “Pray for the soul of Mrs. Elizabeth Murtagh relic of Owen Murtagh Castletown who died 19th day of Dec. 1945 aged 83 years”.  Middle one – “Merciful Jesus grant eternal rest to the soul of Owen Murtagh Castletown Athboy died on the 23rd September 1906 aged 53 years.  May he rest in peace”.  Left one – “Pray for the soul of Mrs. Anne Murtagh Castletown who died 17th day of Dec. 1901 aged 69 years”.

40)  KAVANAGH 1945 . . . Modern Cross.  William & Julia Kavanagh their son Michael and his wife Ellen died 14th Dec. 1945.

41)  GANNON – No date…. Large broken tabletomb with very worn ornamentation.  Likely a Sunburst with usual Cross & IHS.  “To the memory of a beloved parent Mrs. Catherine Gannon relic of Nicholas Gannon Esq. of Ballyboy Co.Meath by her son Rev. Patrick Gannon of the Madrass Mission East Indies.  RIP”.  According to Cogan this family were instrumental in founding the present day Church of Rathmore.

42)  BOLAND OF RATHMORE 1906 . . . Celtic cross with IHS in centre, below we get a sunburst and flaming heart and on each side a bunch of shamrocks.  “Erected in loving memory of Catherine Boland Rathmore who died 19th Mar. 1906 aged 65 years also her daughter Mary who died 5th July 1913 aged 52 years also her husband Patrick who died 28th Jan. 1919 and Margaret Boland died 23rd March 1941 also Eliza O’Reilly died Dec. 15th 1942 aged 77, Sacred Heart of Jesus have mercy on them RIP”.

43)  BOLAND OF MOYAGHER 1914 . . . Large Celtic cross with IHS in centre.  “Erected by John Boland Moyagher in loving memory of his father mother brother sister and wife December 1914”.

44)  BOLAND 1824 . . . Large heavy stone with ‘Gloria in Excelsis Deo’ around a Sunburst Cross IHS & Heart.  On viewer’s left is a sheep and cross while on viewer’s right is a dove carrying a branch in her beak.  Also on each side is an angel and a very small skull and crossbones.  These skulls are only the size of a penny and the crossbones about the size of matchsticks.  The latter are placed under the ear because there is not room under the chin.  There is beading all round the inscription.  “This stone was erected by John Boland of Moyaugher in memory of his wife Bridget Boland alias Lee who departed this life April 3rd 1824 aged 47 years also his daughter Anne who depd this life Sepr 15th 1838 aged 35 years also his son Christopher who depd this life May 3rd 1840 aged 29 years”.

Row 8            

45)  SMITH 1913 . . . Celtic cross 6ft. high.  “In loving memory of Jane Smith who died

10th Mar. 1818 aged 70. Her son James who died 13th June 1913 aged 32”.

46)  KIERNAN 1812 . . . Small plain old thin headstone with Sunburst surrounding a

Crown IHS and 3 nails.  On each side of this motif is a stylised rose.  “Erected in memory

of John Kiernan who depd this life Octr 6th 1812 aged 47 years.  Also his son John who

depd 1833 aged 21 years”.

47)  KIERNAN 1829 . . . Large old heavy type of stone tilting forward.  ‘Gloria in

Excelsis Deo’ around top, full Sunburst with cross and IHS in centre.  On each side a

large cherub’s head with outstretched wings. Border above inscription.  “This monument

was erected by Thos. Kiernan of Gravelstown as a tribute of filial affection for his

beloved father and mother Matthw and Anne Kiernan also his sister Catherine Smith who

epd this life Janry 23rd 1829 and for his posterity”.

48)  GARRY 1830 . . . Large stone tilting backwards.  ‘Gloria etc’ around top.  Full Sunburst with Cross IHS and a small cherubs head and wings underneath.  A large cherub’s head and outstretched wings on each side as well.  “Erected by Catherine and Patrick Garry son of John Garry in memory of her beloved husband Hugh Garry who departed this life 15th March 1830 aged 58 years”.  In small script underneath we get “Mrs. Mary Garry died 6th Feb.1937.  Her husband John died 15th April 1949 RIP”.

Row 9            

49)  LARACY 1777 . . . Small stone leaning backwards with small Sunburst Cross and IHS.  A rose on each side.  “Erected by Willm Laracy in memry of his Brothr, John Laracy who died Augt Ye 1st 1777 aged 40 years”.

Row 10          

50) KANE –  No date…  Floriated Cross and Ivy leaves on each side of it.  Inscription enclosed by a border. “Erected (on a scroll) by Richard Kane in memory of his beloved father mother sisters and brothers whose remains are interred beneath RIP”.

51)  BENNETT 1724…. Small thick stone tilting backward.  Small section of Sunburst at top with Cross and IHS under it, and a bluebell-like flower on each side.  “This stone was erected by Thos Bennett in memory of his father Edward who departed this life AD 1724 aged 58 yrs. and his mother Margaret departed Octr the 12th 1746 aged 58 yrs”.  This is the oldest tombstone we found in Rathmore.

52)  BENNET 1844 . . . Small narrow stone with lamb on a cross in a circle.  “Erected by Catherine Bennet of Sidney New South Wales in memory of her beloved father John Bennet who departed this life 30th July 1844 aged 54 years.  William Augt 1850 aged 21 years.  Also her beloved Mother Margaret Bennet who died May 1859 aged 52 years.  Her brother Thomas who died young”.

53)  DALY OF MEADSTOWN DUNDERRY 1919 . . . Small modern type limestone slab.  “Thomas Daly Meadstown Dunderry in loving memory of his wife Brigid died 30th Nov. 1919 also his parents and brother John”.

54)  FOX 1928  . . . Small Cross on top with flaming heart in centre.  “Erected in fond memory of Thomas Fox Rahoney who died 18th Jan. 1928 and his wife Margaret died 8th March 1935 also their dear children”.

Row 11.         

55)  DAILY 1815 . . . Sunburst with Cross IHS and burning heart in centre, surrounded by vinelike leaves, and on each side a fine flower carving.  ‘Gloria etc’ underneath.  “This stone was erected by Dennis Daily in memory of his beloved son James Daily who departed this life July the 12th 1816 in the 29th year of his age.  Also two of his children who died when young”.

56)  DEALY 1815 . . . Large old stone with Sunburst motif at top but it is so worn as to be almost invisible.  The inscription also is very difficult to read.  Moss covered all this stone and seems to have eaten the lime out of the stone leaving only sand.  “Erected by …. Dealy in memory of his wife Mary Dealy alias Ford ? who departed this life Dec. 10th 1815 ? aged 48 years.  Also her mother Margaret Stanly ? who departed this life Dec. the 25th 1818 aged 72 years”.

Row 12          

57)  MAGUIRE 1793… Plain old type stone.  ‘Gloria etc’ at top.  Sunburst Cross IHS and heart complete the usual motif with a rose on each side. “Erected by Margaret Maguire in memory of her loving husband George Maguire who depd 20th May 1793 aged 73 years.  Much regretted by his neighbours and acquaintances”.

Tombstones on the North side of the church

As there are only 3 we haven’t put them into rows.

58)  DEERING OF MOONEYSTOWN 1919 . . . Celtic Cross with heart in centre and Shamrock leaves.  ‘Thy Will be Donr’ on shaft.  “This Monument was erected by Dennis Deering Mooneystown in memory of his beloved wife Mary Deering who departed this life 9th August 1919 aged 65 years”.

59)  FAGAN OF ATHBOY 1903 . . . Celtic Cross with heart in Centre and Shamrock leaves on shaft but no text.  “IHS.  In loving memory of Thomas Fagan of Athboy who died 6th December 1903 aged 80 years.  RIP.  Erected by his devoted wife Mrs. Elizabeth Fagan who died 21st October 1908 aged 73 years.  Francis Fagan died 24th November 1940.  Gertrude Murray died 20th march 1943 RIP”.

60)  WILKINSON 1892 . . . On E side of curb is ‘O Lord Our God we rest in Thee and in thy Name we go on’ (2 Chron. 14.11).   A draped urn on top of a large double slab.  On right is an entry about Eleanor Victoria Wilkinson who died in 1892 aged 29 yrs.  On left of slab is “M R Wilkinson died 1908 aged 62 Yrs and his wife Kathleen who died in


Tombstones on West side of ruined Church

Row 13          

61)  MULLEN 1942 . . . Small plain modern stone with Cross onTop.  “Matthew Mullen 1942 aged 1 yr 11 mths.  Kathleen Mullen 1942 aged 2 yrs. 3 mths”.

Row 14          

62)  O’CONNOR RAHONEY 1936 . . . Celtic Cross at top with Heart in centre.  “Erected in loving memory of Elizabeth O’Connor Rahoney Athboy died 1936, Her husband Michael O’Connor died 1955”.

63)  O’HARA 1904 . . . Plain small modern stone with ‘Gloria Etc’ around top, Cross and IHS.  “Erected by Eleanor O’Hara in fond memory of her husband Patrick Joseph O’Hara died Feb 8th 1904 aged 58 yrs.  Also his father and mother Charles and Sarah O’Hara. Also his two brothers Peter and Charles RIP”.

64)  DALY RAHONEY 1910 . . . Solid Cross with heart in centre.  Stone is covered over with an artistic leafy design. “Erected in loving memory of James Daly Rahoney died 9th July 1910.  His wife Ellen died 8th Nov. 1924 and their children”.

65)  BRADY OF JAMESTOWN 1865 . . . Plain modern type stone.  Some ornament has been lost off the top, likely a cross.  IHS in centre.  “Erected by Thomas Brady of Jamestown in memory of his son Patrick who depd this life Octber 1865 aged 23 years.  Also Edward his son died 15th Oct. 1875 aged 30 years.  Also his daughter Bridget dep. this life August 29th 1875 aged 22 years RIP”.

ROW 15         

66)  TUITE OF TULLAGHANSTOWN 1948 . . . Small modern stone similar to 44.  “In loving memory of Mary Tuite Tullaghanstown died Mar. 13th 1948 aged 13 years”.

67)  TUITE 1944 . . . Small modern stone, Cross with flower motif on each side.  “In loving memory Mary Teresa Tuite wife of Edward Tuite late of Longford died 3rd June 1944.  RIP.  Erected by her loving husband”.

68)  TUITE 1931 . . . Large modern Celtic Cross with heart in centre.  “Edward Tuite Rahoney Athboy died 1936, daughter Jane 1931, Lettie Tuite 1944. John Tuite 1953. Patrick Tuite 1960”.

69) MURTAGH – no date…. Similar to 44 & 49.  “Erected by Andrew Murtagh in memory of his wife child parents brother and sisters”.

70)  MILLIONE 1893 . . . Large Celtic Cross with heart in centre.  “ Erected by Rose Mary Millione to the memory of her mother Mary Millione who died Aug. 30th 1893”.

Row 16          

71)  CALLEN OF MOONEYSTOWN 1837 . . . Old stone with full Sunburst around

Cross IHS and Cherub’s head, the latter motif is very worn and can hardly be seen

‘Gloria etc.’ around top of Sunburst.  On viewer’s right a lamb bearing a cross, while on

left is a Dove with an Olive branch in her beak.  This stone was covered with Lichen.  A border of Diamonds is carved around the inscription.  “This stone was erected by James Callen of Mooneystown in memory of his beloved father Owen Callen who depd this life May 6th 1840 aged 76 years.  Also his mother Margaret Callen died April 6th 1837 aged 80 years.  Also his daughter Bridget died Oct.22nd 1837 aged 3 years”.

72)  BYRNE OF FRAYNE 1895. . .Plain modern stone with Celtic cross at top, and IHS

in centre.  “Erected by Richard Byrne Frayne in memory of his father John Byrne died 23rd August 1895 and his mother Mary Byrne 15th May 1923 and of his sister Mary Byrne died 12th December 1924, and his uncle Matthew Byrne died 21st March 1900”.

Row 17          

73)  HALLIGAN – No date . . . Tiny cross. “ James Halligan RIP”.

74)  DALY 1925 . . . Modern stone with Celtic Cross at top and flaming heart in centre.  “Bernard Daly died 1948, his wife Mary 1949, their daughter Julia died 1925, also their daughter Mrs. Agnes O’Reilly died 1950, their son-in-law James Halligan died 1952 aged 47 yrs. erected by the Daly family and Fred O’Reilly.  R I P”.

75)  DOYLE 1922. . . modern slab with cross and IHS on top. “John Doyle died 1933 aged 86, his wife Mary Doyle died 1928 aged 78, their son Thomas Doyle died 1922 aged 44, their daughter Anne 1922 aged 30.

76)  MULLEN. . . no date. . . Plain stone with Cross IHS and heart at middle top.  “In memory of Nannie Mullan and her parents also her brother John RIP”

77)  HEALY 1870. . . Celtic Cross on top of a plain slab, IHS in centre above inscription and a sheep lying on a cross.  “Of your charity pray for the soul of Ellen Healy who died 20th Janry 1870 aged 52 years.  Erected by her beloved husband Peter Healy who died 27th Dec.1891”

78)  MULLAN 1905 . . . Plain stone with Celtic Cross on top, IHS in centre.  “Erected by Matthew Mullan Rathmore to his parents.  Elizabeth Mullan died 1905 aged 82 yrs.  Robert Mullan 1910 aged 72 yrs.  His children Mattie died 1917 aged 3 months, Ann died 1940 aged 24 yrs.  Matthew Mullan died 1955, Jane Mullan died 1963. RIP”.

79)  SUNTER OF ATHBOY 1833. . . Large tabletomb with 6 carved pedestal stones under it.  Cross & IHS on top.  “Erected by Thomas Moore Sunter MB to the memory f his beloved Mother Mrs. Rose Sunter of Athboy who departed this life on the third day of November 1847.  To the memory of his aunt Elizabeth Moore who departed this life on the 17th of November 1845 and of his uncle Dr. Thomas Moore who departed this life on 19th July 1833 and Oliver Moore who departed this life on the 19th January 1840”.

80)  MOORE OF MOATTOWN 1821. . . Small old stone half buried in the ground and tilting forward, badly flaked, Sunburst surrounding a Cross, IHS and heart on top. “Erected by Wm. Moore of Moattown in memory of his father John Moore who depd this life the 7 March 1821 aged 64 yrs”.

81)  MOORE 1867. . . Celtic Cross on top with Heart in Centre. “Pray for the souls of William Moore who died 1867 aged 77 years. Also Abigail his wife who died 1884 aged 84 years. And their children Rosana, Eliza, Peter and Abbey. Here also are buried his brother Thomas and his sister Margaret Dillon”.

Row 18          

82) PURDON 1877 . . . Modern Cross with “Sacred to the memory of John Morgan Purdon (Little Broddie) died 28th March 1877 aged 5 months.  Jesus called a little child”.  Below this inscription we get “also Sarah wife of John M. Purdon died Dec. 15th 1878 aged 26.  Also John M. Purdon died Aug. 29th 1903 aged 63”.  On one side we get “Patricia Marion beloved wife of John M.P. Walker died Jan. 24th 1962 at Salmon Arm, British Columbia, Canada”.

83) LYNCH 1907. . . Plain stone with a calvary cross at top.  “Of your charity pray for the soul of Elizabeth Lynch who died 2nd March 1907”.

84) MULLAN 1923. . . Plain slab and cross on top with flaming heart in centre.  “James

Mullan of Mooneystown who died 1923 aged 80 yrs.  His parents James and Bridget

Mullan and brothers John & Robert”.

85) SHERIDAN 1852. . . Large slab with Celtic cross at top with figure of the Sacred Heart, inside a massive curb.  “Erected by the Very Rev. Dr. Sheridan OSB. Dean VG. Sidney N.S.W. Australia in memory of his beloved Father Philip Sheridan late of Martinstown who died 20th June AD 1857 aged 76 years and of his beloved mother Catherine Sheridan who died 3rd June AD 1852 aged 72 yrs”.

86) MOORE – no date. . . Plain large headstone with cross & IHS and ‘Gloria etc.’ around top.  “Of your charity pray for the souls of Peter and Elizabeth Moore and their children who are interred beneath this stone”.

87) LYNCH 1864. . . Small plain stone with Cross and IHS at top.  “Erected by Thos. Leonard N.S.W. Australia in memory of his beloved sister Annie Lynch who died Jany 24th 1885 aged 23 years.  Also his brother Peter who died Decr. 18th 1864 aged 5 years”.