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Killyliss, County Fermanagh

Origin

Ir. Coill an Leasa ‘wood of the fort’

Background

With the initial component Killy- in place names (once we have excluded cill ‘church, graveyard’), it is often unclear whether we are dealing with the standard element coill alongside the definite article an, or with coillidh, a common dative/locative form which often replaces the nominative in Ulster (cf. Coillidh Léith ‘grey wood’ which appears as Killylea in Co. Armagh). In the current name, we are probably looking at the former, with lios ‘fort’ appearing as the qualifying element in the form Coill an Leasa ‘wood of the fort’. There is no feature in the townland which corresponds to lios ‘fort’. However, this is not significant, since these structures were usually earthen ones, easily obliterated by modern agricultural practices. The loss of final schwa (i.e. the sound of the second -a in droma) is a well-attested feature of Ulster Irish (see Ó Dochartaigh 1987, 168-72.) and does not cause any problems for our analysis.

There are two other townlands named Killyliss in Co. Tyrone. 

References

FK

Additional Information

Historical name form

Old FormRef. DateReference
Killaless1751Reg. Free. Fer. 19
~Coill a Liosa ""wood of the fort""1834OSNB Inf. B126
~Coill-a-leasa ""wood of the lis or fort""1913Joyce iii 420
Barony
Tirkennedy
Parish
Enniskillen
Parish in 1851
Enniskillen
Townland
None
Place name ID
9114
Place name type
T