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Kinelarty is a barony in County Down.[1] It lies east of the centre of the county, and is bordered by five other baronies: Iveagh Upper, Lower Half to the west; Lecale Upper to the south and south-east; Lecale Lower to the west; Castlereagh Upper to the north; and Iveagh Lower, Upper Half to the north-west.[1]


Kinelarty derives its name from the Irish Cineál Fhaghartaigh, meaning Faghartach's (Fogarty's) kindred.[2] This was the name of a district, the chiefs of which were the Mac Artáin (MacCartan).[3]

The Mac Artáin descend from Artán, great-grandson of Mongán Mac Aonghusa (MacGuinness) of Uíbh Echach (anglicised as Iveagh). Subordinate to the Mac Aonghusa of Iveagh, the Mac Artáin for a time became themselves lords of Iveagh.

By 1177, the Norman John de Courcy had arrived in Ulster and set about conquering most of eastern Ulster, forming the Earldom of Ulster. The only clans who were able to exist independently in eastern Ulster during this time were in the interior away from the sea-coast, where the Uí Tuirtre, north of Lough Neagh, and the Uíbh Echach.[4]

During the 14th century the Normans in Ulster faded as a result of the Bruce Invasion, with this period seeing the Mac Aonghusa and Mac Artáin clans emerge and expand from Uibh Echach, with their respective territories becoming the basis of the future baronies of Iveagh and Kinelarty.[4] With the fall of Norman power in Ulster, the Clann Aodha Bhuidhe (Clandeboy) branch of the O'Neills took control of north Down, with the chiefs of Kinelarty eventually beceming their tributaries.[3][4]

Early mentions in regards to Kinelarty and the MacCartans include:

  • 1004 or 1005, Flaithbheartach gained a victory over the Uíbh Echach and Ulidians at Loch Bricrenn, where Artán, heir of Uí Echach was killed.[5]
  • 1011, Muircheartach, son of Artán, the heir of Uí Echach, was killed in the "Battle of the Mullachs".[5]
  • 1157, "Kenel Fagartay" and "Kenelfagarthay" are recorded by the Normans in the Newry Charter.[6]
  • 1165, a Diarmait Mac Artáin head of Clainne-Fogartaigh and all Uí Echach died.[5]
  • 1178, Cinaeth Mac Cartain is mentioned as head of Ceneil Fogartaigh.[6]
  • 1370-5, Mac Artain uirrí (sub-king) of Cenel Fhagartoigh, was killed by his own kinsman, Mac Gilla Ternaind.[6][5]

By the Elizabethan era, Kinelarty was simultaneously known under variations of "MacCarton's country", and during the reign of James I simultaneously under variations of "Killenarten", before once again becoming simply known as variations of Kinelarty.[6]

List of settlements

Below is a list of settlements in Kinelarty:[7]



List of parishes

Below is a list of parishes in Kinelarty:[8][9][7]

  • Annahilt (one townland, rest in barony of Iveagh Lower, Lower Half)
  • Dromara (also partly in baronies of Iveagh Lower, Lower Half and Iveagh Upper, Lower Half)
  • Kilmegan (also partly in baronies of Iveagh Upper, Lower Half and Lecale Upper)
  • Kilmore (also partly in barony of Castlereagh Upper)
  • Loughinisland
  • Magheradrool (also partly in barony of Iveagh Lower, Lower Half (one townland))


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 PRONI Baronies of Northern Ireland
  2. 2.0 2.1 Ulster Place Names - Down Council Area, page 49.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Mills, A. D. (2003). A Dictionary of British Place-Names. Oxford University Press. Retrieved 2009-01-20. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Ciarán Ó Duibhín (1997). The Irish Language in County Down. Geography Publications. 
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 Roots Web Kingdom of Ulster, Kinelarty
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 Placenames NI - Historic forms of Kinelarty
  7. 7.0 7.1 "Kinelarty". Retrieved 15 May 2015. 
  8. 8.0 8.1 Logainm - Kinelarty
  9. 9.0 9.1 PRONI Civil Parishes of County Down