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Monday, 31 October 2011

More On The Lysaght Family of Mountnorth

The old Irish name for Mountnorth was Ardihoig.

Under the Act of Settlement of 1666 - 1668, Cornet John Lysaght received about 500 acres of land in the townlands of Ardehoige, Ballynalty and Garryduffe.

The Act of Settlement was part of the land grab which was put into action following the defeat of the 1641 Rebellion, whereby the Catholic population was punished for their support of Charles I by being thrown off their land and banished to the west of the country. Following the Restoration of the English monarchy in 1660, a reversal of these confiscations was expected; however, in reality, only a minority of Catholics got their old properties back.

In 1750, Smith wrote - ‘Mount North, within three miles of Mallow, is an elegant seat of John Lysaght, Esq. The house is a square building, with two wings. There are fine plantations to the north of ash, oak and fir, with large groves, beautiful avenues, and pleasant gardens. Fronting the house is a noble canal well stocked with fish. The adjacent demesne is also finely planted, and well laid out into beautiful meadows and pasture grounds.’

In 1777 and 1806, Lord Lisle was noted as owning Mountnorth.
In 1801, Nicholas Lysaght and Edward Lysaght, both of Mountnorth, were members of the Duhallow hunt.
Mountnorth was unoccupied by 1814.

In 1905, the Honorable Horace George Lysaght wrote that there was an inscribed stone built into the wall of a farmyard close to Mountnorth, which stated that the Mountnorth obelisk, which stood on a hill then known as ‘Steeple Hill’, had been built by John Lysaght (Lord Lisle of Mountnorth) to commemmorate the Battle of the Boyne in which his father, Nicholas Lysaght, had fought.

The will of Nicholas Lysaght was dated 1724 and part of it reads: ‘…I leave and bequeath to the poor of Ballyclough £4 yearly forever, and I further leave to the poor of the said parish, £4 to be paid in one month’s time after my decease. Item, I leave and bequeath to the poor of the parish of Kilmallock, £4 yearly forever, and a further sum of £4 to be paid in one month’s time after my decease.
…I order and direct that when my son Nicholas shall marry, that he shall hold for the time of 11 years, Ardehoige, als. Mountnorth, and Curraghilehane, at the yearly rent of £80, payably to my son John.
…Item, I order that my son Arthur shall hold for the term of 11 years from the time of his marriage, the ploughland of Clareen at the yearly rent of £40, payable to my son John, in order that he may have a dwelling place as well as my son Nicholas.’

The heir of Nicholas Lysaght, mentioned in the above will, was John Lysaght, 1st Lord Lisle, whose will was dated 1781: ‘…I leave and bequeath to my son James the lands of Ardvullen in the County of Limerick, and I leave and bequeath to my wife a lease of 99 years, part of the lands of Borders Town and Blackrock, Co. Dublin, and and all my furniture in my house called Fort Lisle in same lands. Also my house lately purchased in Molesworth Street, Dublin, and all furniture in said house, or in my house in Dawson Street, except plate; also the rings and jewells (sic) I purchased from W. Southwell, except the earrings valued at £500...’

In 1778, there was a dispute in court between Lord Lisle and Mr. Purcell over the disputed right of way through lands at Crumlin. This was land that must have passed into the ownership of the Lysaght family when Lord Lisle married Catherine Deane, the daughter of Joseph Deane of Crumlin. It is known that Lord Lisle used Joseph Deane’s house in Crumlin as his country residence, but later abandoned it to live at Fort Lisle, his house in Blackrock in south Dublin.

 'A History of The County Dublin' by Francis Elrington Ball (1902) makes mention of Fort Lisle which stood on the site of the present park in Blackrock:  'Fort Lisle, which stood where the upper bank of the People's Park now lies, was then the residence of John, first Lord Lisle, whose penurious habits gave great opportunity to the satirists of his time.  After his death in 1781  the house was occupied by his widow, whose brother, Admiral Matthew Moore, died in 1787 in Blackrock, ordering his body to be interred at low watermark in the strand, and by his son-in-law, Mr John Travers.  In 1793 the house and grounds were turned into a place of public recreation under the name of Vauxhall Gardens, which were said, in the language of that period, to have crowned "the fascinating vicinity of Blackrock with a resistless charm." '

And from 'Brief Sketches of the Parishes of Booterstown and Donnybrook': 
'...1793. The following advertisement appeared in the Dub. Chron. 29th June: - "Vauxhall-Gardens, Blackrock (built and) formerly occupied by Lord Lisle. The proprietors of the above place respectfully inform the nobility and gentry residing at, and visiting the Rock, that they have engaged a complete Military Band to attend on Tuesday next, and every Tuesday and Thursday, from 5 to 9 o'clock each evening. They humbly solicit public patronage and support, which they will anxiously endeavour to deserve....The house is laid out in a style of elegance, as a hotel and tavern, and provided with every accommodation equal to any house in England or Ireland."  In the same newspaper, 6th July, it is stated that "Vauxhall-Gardens were crowded as usual, on Thursday last, with a most brilliant and fashionable assemblage, with increased reputation...The house is furnished with everything in season; bowers, grottoes &c, interspersed through the dark shady walks, make the gardens truly romantic:  and the effect the music has on the sea, which flows at the foot of the garden, can better be imagined than expressed."  ....It was for sale in 1804 (Saunders's News-Letter 29th October); and for some years past has been a boarding-house.'

From the same book:  '1783: "Married, July 25th, by Consistorial Licence,  John Travers, Esq., to the Honorable Grace Licet (Lysaght, second daughter of John, first Lord Lisle), by the Revd Mr. Ryan, Chaplain to the Right Honorable Lady Lisle."  - Visitation-return, Consist. Court, Dublin.'

And also:  '1787: "It is a singularity in the will (made 15th May, and proved 8th September, 1787) of Admiral (Matthew) Moore,  (second son of Edward Moore, Esq., of Mooresfort in the county of Tipperary..., and brother of Elizabeth, m. in the year 1746 John, first Lord Lisle), who died a few days ago near the Blackrock, that he ordered his body to buried at low-water mark. He was a man of opulence, and so attached has he been to a marine character, that from the turret of his garden the different naval flags of England were always seen flying, and in particular a flag for Sunday. The influence of his friends should be exerted to rescue his remains from the various revolutions of the tides, and deposit them in peace on the better security of terra firma." - Dub. Chron. 5th July; and Gent. Mag. 1787." '

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