County Cavan

This inland county is one of the three Ulster counties in the Republic of Ireland…..confusing isnt it !!!

The county, which stretches over 745 square miles, has a population of approx 60,000.

Cavan town is the county capital and the cathedral center of the diocese of Kilmore. Before the English conquest, the O’Reilly clan dominated the area, which was then known as Breifni, also included Leitrim.

Cavan is essentially agrarian. Throughout the county there are 365 lakes.

The southern part, with its fertile, rolling hills and tidy towns , borders and resembles Leinster.

The north, rugged, mountainous, and thinly populated, blends elements of Connacht and Ulster.

The northwest parish of Killanagh in the barony of Tullyhaw, dominated by the mountain Cuilcagh (2,199 ft), is a scenic area, still largely undiscovered by tourists ( a real hidden gem ). Close to the mountain’s base, the Shannon Pot, a pool fed by a spring, is the source of Ireland’s longest river.

Cavan is also the source of the Erne, the river that produces the lovely lake country of Fermanagh.

A few hundred yards from the Shannon Pot, in the town land of Moneygashel, are interesting early Celtic archaeological sites – a ring fort and sweat house with instruments and ornaments of the times. Ring forts are also common in other parts of the county.

The remains of Cloghoughter Castle, on an island in Lough Oughter, offers the best example of the native Irish style of circular tower castles of the thirteenth to fifteenth centuries. Owen Roe O’Niell, the leading general of the Catholic Confederation, died there in 1649.

At Drumlane near Beltrurbet  are the remains of a twelfth-century round tower.

In 1726, Jonathan Swift wrote Gulliver’s Travels in the home of his friend Thomas Sheridan near the town of Virginia.

A celebrated personality with Cavan connections is Philip Sheridan, an American Civil War General.

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