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Clans and Families of Ireland and Scotland
VII. The Érainn


numerous and respectable in Thomond (the majority of County Clare, with adjacent parts of Tipperary and Limerick).

The O’Davorens (0 Dabhoireann) or descendants of Dubhdabhoireann, were a distinguished brehon (legal) family, and for many generations they maintained a great literary and legal school at Lisdoonvarna (in the Burren), where the head of the family resided. Duald MacFirbis, the famous Irish antiquary, was once a pupil at this school. The family spread at an early date (before the sixteenth century) into Tipperary, and are now well represented in Thomond (see above).

The Corca Thine or O’Cahills (0 Cathail) were chiefs of Templemore, in County Tipperary. They descended from Cathal, brother of Conchobhar (Conor-Na-Luinge Cuaithe), ancestor of the O’Connors of the Corca Modhruadh. The family was numerous at the end of the sixteenth century, and no less than three townlands in Tipperary called Ballycahill are named after them ("Bally" means "townland of").

The DaI Cairbre Arad
The Dal Cairbre Arad dwelt in ancient times in northwest Tipperary and the adjacent part of Limerick south of Lough Derg, as chiefs of that region, the Ara. In the later Middle Ages their descendants are found not far to the south, in Kilnamanagh.

The O’Dwyers (0 Dub huidhir) were chiefs of Kilnamanagh, the mountainous region lying west of Thurles. They were an important sept, though not comparable in power to such neighboring families as the Burkes. The O’Dwyers were intimately associated through the years with resistance to the English. In the Cromwellian act of 1652, Philip and Owen O’Dwyer were exempted from pardon for life and estate. Later, Michael Dwyer (b. 1771), the adventurous 1798 man alluded to by Yeats, evaded the English government for five years, though he was later transported to Australia.

The Dal gCais
The Dal gCais were the great clan of Thomond, or North Munster, an area more especially associated with County Clare (excluding the Burren and Corcomroe on the northwest corner) and adjacent parts of Tipperary and Limerick. They were the axe-wielding footsoldiers who formed the core of the army that defeated the Vikings in 1014, one of the most significant dates in Gaelic history. The chief families of this tribe were above all the O’Briens, but also the MacConsidines, MacDonnells, MacLysaghts, MacMahons, O’Ahernes, O’Kennedys, O’Shanahans, O’Duracks, MacGraths, O’Fogartys, O’Galvins, O’Gradys, O’Hanrahans, O’Hickeys, O’Mearas, O’Molonys, O’Moroneys, O’Haruzgans, O’Lonergans, Creaghs, O’Quins, MacNamaras, Maclnerneys, O’Deas and O’Griffeys.

The O’Briens (0 Briain) were the chief family of the Dal gCais, otherwise


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