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pletely secured. It opens to the south by a narrow entrance, at which is a lighthouse, on an insulated rock, call the Rotten Island. The shore all round the bay is abrupt and craggy, but there is enough of green
to redeem it from wildness. The visitor should take an hour's boating in the bay for sake of the views, especially of the town—which seems to float on the tide—and its rocky background. A boat may be had at Coane's wellappointed hotel.
Killybegs, anciently called Calla-beaga,* or NaCalla, as it is still designated by the Irish-speaking population, possesses some interest for the antiquary. Beside the glebe-house, on the western shore of the bay, are the grass-grown remains of a castle and a Franciscan friary, built by the MacSwiney of Banagh, on the site of which there seems to have been a Catholic chapel down to comparatively late times, under the patronage of St Catherine.
The town was incorporated by royal charter in the thirteenth year of the reign of James I. into a borough with the titles of “provost, free burgesses, and commonalty of Callebegg,” and returned two members to the Irish parliament, down to the Union, when it was disfranchised-Henry, Earl of Conyngham, pocketing the whole of the compensation, £15,000.
* Little Churches.
“The tourist should now take a car, there being no other public conveyance, to explore the district beyond Killybegs, which, as far as scenery goes, is equal to anything in Ireland, and deserves to be thoroughly well known.”* Starting from Killybegs you begin at once to labour against a steep ascent, from the slope of which, looking back, you get a view which, for variety of incident, is rarely equalled. The little town under your feet with its gigantic barrier of crags standing up behind it, the placid basin, with its translucent waters and brim of rock and pasture, interwoven in every conceivable figure, all looking clean and bright even in murky weather, and the distant hills cutting the horizon into long and graceful lines, are the characteristics of the scene.
After the first mile, you suddenly drop upon a maritime dell with a singularly bold background. There is a broad strip of yellow strand, from which Fintra Bay spreads out to the south-west, and upon the beach is Fintra House, (R. Hamilton, Esq.,) embosomed in trees, while close behind tower the dark steeps of Cronnarad. The road now keeps along the coast, which slopes rapidly to the sea, having still the ridge of Cronnarad, gray and rugged, on the right, and commanding seaward a magnificent view of Donegal Bay with its southern coast-line from the sandhills of Bundoran, backed by the Benbulben and Truskmore ranges, the distant mountains of Erris and Tyrawley. The tourist should note the phenomena of colour on those distant hills. As he proceeds he will be much struck with the cleanliness and comfort of the cottages that line the road, due in great measure to Mr Wilson, the able and humane manager of Mr Murray Stewart's estate in this district.
At the fifth mile the direct road bends inland to Kilcar, but the tourist had better go by the lessfrequented one which skirts the base of Muckross (916 feet) on the side next the sea, and affords bits of coast scenery that will more than repay the inconvenience of the detour. Perched high on what is more a cliff than a hillside are numerous cottages, the airy tenements of fishermen, who, in addition to the precarious livelihood drawn from the deep, manage to raise potatoes among the rocks. Arrived at a spot where there is a school-house standing by itself on the roadside, the tourist will have no difficulty in finding among the houses in the neighbourhood some one to guide him to the caves which open on the sea at the end of Muckross Point. These are a series of marine chambers, each consisting of the three sides of a square cut clean out of the living rock, and a flat roof of immense flags admirably jointed together. There is an enormous cube of rock in the largest of these caves called the Market House. They are not accessible at the higher stages of the tide, but it is worth while to wait till the water has receded sufficiently to allow one to explore them. Above, on the western extremity of this bit of headland, is shown a heap of stones, said to be the remains of an old castle, which, judging from the traditions, as well as from the incidents of the situation, was probably one of those Cyclopean towers of the Pagan period, so common in the west and south of Ireland. Looking towards Carrigan Head, the western extremity of Slieve League, there is a noble vista of precipices standing as pillars at the entrances into Tawney and Teelin Bays. If the day is not unusually fine, the visitor should spend half-an-hour on the strand under the school-house to observe the majestic roll of the waves, which, under most conditions of weather, attain here a volume greater than anywhere else all round this stormy coast. He cannot fail to be struck with the position of the school-house built into the abrupt acclivity of the mountain. The school-boy when he leaves the
door sees below him a line of awful precipices, under which the Atlantic thunders unceasingly. Above him he sees the hardly less awful Muckross, so steep that the unaccustomed visitor cannot look up without a sensation of uneasiness lest he might fall back into the sea. Along this mountain side, gray with rocks threatening every moment to come down -stones not unfrequently do descend, acquiring in the fall a momentum equal to a cannon-shot--the road cuts its way, touching at two or three points on the very verge of precipices that take one's breath away, and quitting this dizzy course falls into a short fiord, called Tawney Bay, the western side of which is very precipitous, but crowned with clusters of cottages and cultivated patches of ground, presenting almost every possible geometrical combination of figure.
About half a mile above the head of the bay is
KILCAR, “ a romantic village on the slope of a hill, at the foot of which is the church and a brawling mountain torrent, forming altogether a charming
The Catholic chapel, neatly railed off the street, with the hospitable dwelling of the parish priest (Rev. H. O'Donnell) adjoining, is the most
Murray, p. 83.