Miracles and Violence: St Augustine’s well in the 17th century

Pilgrimage In Medieval Ireland

St Augustine’s Holy Well sits on water’s edge of Lough Atalia or Loch an tSáile, on the eastern edge of Galway city.

Originally this well was one of a group of three, but the northern and southern wells no longer survive. The Galway Archaeological Inventory states all three wells were dedicated originally to St Augustine but Máire MacNeill (2007) refers to the northern and southern wells as being dedicated to the  Blessed Virgin and John the Baptist.

The surviving well has been very tastefully restored by the Galway Civic Trust in 2000. Today it consists of a concrete hexagonal trough surrounded by a low wall. The well is tidal and when I visited the tide was in, but it was still possible to get close to the well. The trough was filled with small coins .

At the turn of the last century the main days for devotion at the…

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