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Ringhaddy, County Down


Ir. Rinn an Chadaigh ‘point of the covenant’


The name Ringhaddy first appears as Ecclesia de Rencady ‘the church of Ringhaddy’ in the Papal Taxation of 1306 (EA 8-9n). The first element seems to be rinn, ‘point’ or ‘promontory’.  Renaghaddye (with 2 castles and a church, on a peninsula or island) was shown on an early map of Down c.1580.  The ruined church is on a drumlin N of the castle (ASCD 248-50).  Ringhaddy Castle is 15th century (ASCD 309). The ‘manor and castle of Ringhaddy and Killyleagh’ belonged to the Whites in 1605.  The name has been interpreted as Rinn Fada ‘long promontory’, which would be an apt description (EA, Muhr 2005), but the preponderance of ch and gh in the historical spellings means g is unlikely to have originated as a misreading of the long tail of f, and we are looking for a word beginning in c-.  The element is unlikely to be the Omeath usage of cadach as ‘bog moss’, since there is no evidence of bog on the peninsula.  It is more likely to be from the Irish cadach ‘covenant’ (FGB), probably referring to some now-forgotten struggle about possession of this strategic site.


KM, 2009

Additional Information

Historical name form

Old FormRef. DateReference

Rencady, Ecclesia de

1306cEccles. Tax. 8

Renaghaddye (two castles and a church, on a peninsula or island) [Muhr 2005, 21]

1580cSE Ulster Map

(?) Whites ca. [positioned S of Renighad, at actual location of Castlewilliam?]

1595Mercator's Ulst.

Renescaddie, maner'' & castr'' de

1605Inq. Ult. (Down) $1 Jac. I

(?) Whites Cast [positioned S of Killeagh (=Killyleagh), at actual location of Castlewilliam?]

1610Speed's Ulster

Rane Had

1610Speed's Ulster

Rinchadie, Ecclesia de

1615Terrier (Reeves) 55
Renighad1595Mercator's Ulst.
Renechaddy1605Inq. Ult. (Down) $1 Jac. I
Ilandrinhaddy1624CPR Jas I 587b
Rahinechaddy1624CPR Jas I 587b
Renechaddy1624CPR Jas I 587b
Rinchaddy1624CPR Jas I 587b
Rinhaddy1624CPR Jas I 587b
Ringhadde1625cRaven Map Clandeboye 58,60
Ringhaddey1625cRaven Map Clandeboye 59
Rinchaddie1629Grant Jas I (OSNB) 36/56;5ChasI
Rinechaddy1629Grant Jas I (OSNB) 36/56;5ChasI
Island-rinchady1645Inq. Ult. (Down) $104 Car. I c
Renechady1645Inq. Ult. (Down) $104 Car. I
Renechady al. Krochaddy1645Inq. Ult. (Down) $104 Car. I
Rinchaddy1645Inq. Ult. (Down) $104 Car. I
Kinchady and Tollimore1659cCensus 1659 84
Ringehaddy1661BSD 63
Renechady1662Inq. Ult. (Down) $23 Car. II
Rinchady1662Inq. Ult. (Down) $23 Car. II
Rinchady al. Renechady1662Inq. Ult. (Down) $23 Car. II
Ringhaddy1744Harris Hist. (OSNB) 36/56
Ringhaddy1830cGrand Jury Pres. (OSNB) 36/56
Ringhaddy1834cOSNB: gen. sources 36/56
Parish in 1851
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