The Franciscan Friary at Kilconnell was founded by the O’Kelly lords of the ancient territory Uí Maine at the beginning of the 15th century. In the early 15th century the friary consisted of a long church comprising a nave and chancel, with a cloister and domestic buildings to the north. The tower was added later in the 15th century, as well as an aisle and a transept to the south of the church.
Near the door at the west end of the church, is a tomb featuring wonderful carvings of St. John the Evangelist, St. Louis of Toulouse, The Virgin, St. John the Baptist, St. James of Compostela and St. Denis of Paris beneath a spectacular canopy of ‘flamboyant’ tracery. Above the canopy are two small figures, one of St. Francis and the other of a Bishop. The tomb dates to the early 16th century, although is not known whom it commemorates.
The friary was officially dissolved in 1541 and in 1596 was occupied by English troops for a time. However, in 1617 it was claimed that the buildings were intact and still in use, with a community of six friars.
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