KILLEEN, a parish, in the barony of SKREEN, county of MEATH, and province of LEINSTER, 2¼ miles (N. by W.) from Dunshaughlin, on the road from Dublin to Athboy; containing 588 inhabitants. An abbey is said to have been founded here in the 16th century by St. Endeus, and also a nunnery, of which his sister St. Fanchea was abbess. The barony came into the family of Plunkett by the marriage of Sir Christopher Plunkett, in 1403, with the only daughter and heiress of Sir Lucas Cusac; and Lucas, the tenth Lord, was created Earl of Fingall by Jas. I., in 1628. The parish comprises 2972 statute acres; about one-third is under tillage, and the remainder meadow and pasture of excellent quality; the system of agriculture is greatly improved, and there is neither waste land nor bog; there are several quarries of black limestone. Killeen Castle, the seat of the Earl of Fingall, was originally a stately structure, erected by Hugh de Lacy, in 1180, and has been enlarged and greatly improved after a design by Johnston, in which the style of its ancient architecture has been retained with fine effect; the demesne comprises more than 840 statute acres, and is tastefully laid out and embellished. The parish is in the diocese of Meath; the rectory is impropriate in P. P. Metge, of Athlumney, Esq., and the vicarage forms part of the union of Taragh; the tithes amount to £204, of which £136 is payable to the impropriator, and £68 to the vicar. The church, near the castle, is a very interesting structure, erected by Sir Christopher Plunkett, who died in 1445; the east window is of lofty dimensions and of very elegant design. Among the ancient monuments are those of the founder and his wife; of Robt. Cusack, who died in 1620; and of John Quatermas (who roofed the church) and his wife, dated 1507. It formerly contained a chantry and a guild of the Blessed Virgin. The glebe comprises 57 acres of good land. In the R. C. divisions the parish forms part of the union of Dunsany, or Kilmessan.
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Directories & Gazetteers
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Land and Property
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