Corpus of Electronic Texts Edition
Annals of the Four Masters (Author: [unknown])

Annal M1611


THE AGE OF CHRIST, 1611. The Age of Christ, one thousand six hundred eleven.


Conor O'Duibheannaigh O'Devany, Bishop of Down and Conor, who had been at first a friar of the order of St. Francis, of the convent of Donegal, but who was afterwards, for his good qualifications, elected to the episcopal dignity, was taken prisoner by the English; and he was detained by them a long time in bondage and punishment; and they offered him riches and many rewards, if he would turn over to their heresy, but he refused to accept of them, for he despised transitory riches for an everlasting kingdom. God released him from the English on that occasion; but he was taken again. Sir Arthur Chichester being at this time Lord Justice of Ireland, he was put to death. He was first beheaded, and then his members were cut in quarters, and his flesh mangled at Dublin, on the first of February.


There was not a Christian in the land of Ireland whose heart did not shudder within him at the horror of the martyrdom which this chaste, wise, divine, and the perfect and truly meek, righteous man, suffered for the reward of his soul. The Christians who were then in Dublin contended with each other, to see which of them should have one of his limbs; and not only his limbs, but they had fine linen in readiness, to prevent his blood from falling to the ground; for they were convinced that he was one of the holy martyrs of the Lord.



Gilla-Patrick O'Loughrane, a distinguished priest, was with the Bishop at this time. When the English had decided that both these should be put to death, the Bishop felt afraid that he the priest might be seized with horror and dismay at the sight of the tortures about to be inflicted upon his own body in his presence; so that he, therefore, requested of the executioner to put the priest to death before himself. The priest said that he need not be in dread on his account, and that he would follow him without fear, and remarked that it was not meet an honourable bishop should be without a priest to attend him. This he fulfilled, for he consented and suffered the like torture to be inflicted on him with fortitude, for the sake of obtaining the kingdom of heaven for his soul.


Niall O'Boyle, Bishop of Raphoe, died at Gleann-Eidhnighe, on the 6th of February, and was interred at Inis-Caoil.