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Annalong, County Down


Ir. Áth na Long [ah na lung] ‘ford of the ships’.


8.5km NE of Kilkeel

par: Kilkeel bar: Mourne

Annalong is an important fishing village situated at the mouth of the ANNALONG RIVER, partly in the townland of MONEYDORRAGH MOREand partly in MULLARTOWN [Analong c.1655].

Harris, writing in 1744, notes that Annalong affords the best harbour in this part of County Down "though it will not receive any Vessels but what are under 20 Tons" (Harris Hist. 140).  Nearly 100 years later it is stated to be "the only creek in the twelve miles of coast that bounds the parish,... where a small dock for fishing-vessels has been excavated out of a rock" (Lewis' Top. Dict. i 101).  The name Annalong does not derive from this artificial harbour but from some ford on the Annalong River near where it enters that harbour.  The name is not documented before the middle of the 17th century, presumably because it is not a townland, although there may be a number of early references to Annalong River (2-5).  In the Census of c. 1659 it is termed a "quarter" and from the middle of the 18th century it occurs with greater frequency in the sources in consequence of its growth into a town.  Some of the early spellings are curious and forms 14 and 15 are probably mistranscriptions.  For the variant Islealong see Ó Mainnín 1989-90, 205.


McKay, P. (2007): A Dictionary of Ulster Place-Names, p. 5, Ó Mainnín, M. (1992): Place-Names of Northern Ireland vol. 3 p. 54-55

Additional Information

T., 1851 Census

Historical name form

Old FormRef. DateReference
Analong1655cCiv. Surv. x $71
Analong qr.1659cCensus 1659 82
Annalong1743Harris Hist. map
Islealong1744Harris Hist. 140
Annalong1755Map of Down (OSNB) E206
Annalong1767Map of Down (OSNB) E206
Annahole1776Maps Down (Mac Aodha) 57
Annahole1794Maps Down (Mac Aodha) 57
Annalong1808Maps Down (Mac Aodha) 57
Annalong1810Wm. Map (OSNB) E206
Annalony1824Maps Down (Mac Aodha) 57
Annalong1830cMaps Down (Mac Aodha) 57
Annalong1831Maps Down (Mac Aodha) 57
Annalong1831Maps Down (Mac Aodha) 57
~Ath na Long1834OSL 1909 edn map
~Ath na long ""ford of the ships""1834cOSNB: gen. sources E206
~A\th na Long1901Omeath Infs (GJ) 157
~A/th na Long1905Post-Sheanchas 21
~A\th na Long1969AGBP 112
~A\th na Long1988Éire Thuaidh
~A\th na Long1989GÉ 9
~Áth na Long ""ford of the ships""1999Dict. Ulst. PN 5
Parish in 1851
Moneydorragh More
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