Irish history: Cobhlaigh Mor, daughter of the king of Connacht
Irish History From The Annals


Cobhlaigh Mor, the daughter of the king of Connacht, married three rival dynasts and was described in the annals as rich, affluent and hospitable.

For the year 1395 the annals of the Four Masters recorded the death of Cobhlaigh Mor, the daughter of Cathal O’Connor, King of Connacht. Cobhlaigh was known to her contemporaries as Port na-dtri namhat “the meeting place of the three enemies” because she married three men who were violent enemies. She was married to Niall Garbh O'Donnell King of Tirconnel (Donegal) until he was killed in 1348 by Manus Meabhlach O'Donnell. She then married Hugh O'Rourke, Lord of Breifny (Leitrim and Cavan) until he was killed in 1352 by Cathal, the son of another claimant of the kingship of Connacht, Hugh the Breifneach O'Conor. She then married her second husband's killer, Cathal O'Conor, who was himself killed in a battle in Fermanagh in 1366.

For the remaining 29 years of her life she remained a widow. The annals describe her as rich, affluent and hospitable. She would have, like any contemporary Irish lord, had control of her own lands with tenants and livestock and ran her own household where she provided hospitality to other lords. If she was born about 1310 she would have been about 85 when she died in 1395 and was buried in the Cistercian Abbey at Boyle, Co. Roscommon.

Cobhlaigh Mor, daughter of Cathal, the son of Donnell O'Conor, King of Connaught, a rich and affluent woman, of good hospitality, died, after the victory of Penance, and was interred in the monastery of Boyle. It was she who was commonly called Port na-d-Tri Namhat; for she was wife of O'Donnell, i.e. Niall, Lord of Tirconnell; of Hugh O'Rourke, Lord of Breifny; and of Cathal, the son of Hugh Breifneach O'Conor, Roydamna of Connaught.

 
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