This year commemorates the centenary of the beginning of equal voting rights for female citizens.
Recent OLochlainn research has discovered various females who were OLochlainn by birth, or married into the Clan during medieval times.
Female first names now extant were popular during earlier centuries. Saibh (Sive) or Sabby OLochlainn lived c 1450 and married an OBrien from Coad, Kilnaboy, county Clare. Saibh had a family of four sons.
A century later, Finola a daughter of Owney OLochlainn who was then chief of his sept residing at Gragans castle, until 1590. A grandson of Owney (1590), also Owney, lived till 1617 at nearby Mucinish castle on the north Clare coast, having married Finola OBrien c 1580. Finola is known due to the Gaelic lament for husband, Owney (+1617), while also representing a female view on historical events during the first two decades of the 17th century. Finola is recorded as having reached 58 years during a legal Chancery session, which took place probably in Dublin, during January 1615.
A poem connected to Finola is recorded in a text, entitled An Duanaire* (1600-1900) / Poems of the Dispossessed; OTuama / Kinsella (1981).
Another Saibh/Sive appears in the 1600’s and she was recorded by Gaelic poet, Lochlainn Oge ODalaigh in bardic verse during his composition c 1642.
The same ODalaigh poet complimented Una who married Owney Oge OLochlainn (1593-1655) who fathered three sons; Torlogh, Donogh and Lochlainn.
Torlogh later married Honora OBrien of Newtown, while his son, Donogh (+1714), married Jane Nugent (+1712); both residing at Ballyalban, Rathborney, north Clare. Donogh’s son, Torlogh/Terence married a Mary Sarsfield and both were living c 1760.
*Duanaire refers to a Gaelic family poem-book, The Book of OLochlainn (1727) held at the RIA, Dublin is a good example
Rosemary Gilligan, Seattle, USA
Michael OLoghlen, Apollo Bay, Victoria, Australia
Andrew MacCurtin, The Book of OLochlainn (1727); RIA, Dublin
The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing; Vol. (4), CUP (2002)