From Cork or Korki 63 I came to Kingseele, ten miles distant, a small mercantile town, and ill built. It has an English garrison. From Kingseele I came to Johol,64 thirty miles, having dined at Karabé Carrigaline.65
At the gate of Johal, I was surrounded by twenty English soldiers, who led me forcibly to the captain of the town;66 he demanded of me who I was, and
p.32after having shewn him my passports from the King of England and from the Viceroy of Ireland, I told him that I had travelled from Bristol to Doublin with Mr. Galoe Galway, a merchant of Johal. He sent for the person I mentioned, and tired of questioning me, allowed me to depart quietly, being assured that I was not a liar.
Johal is well walled, and under the government of the English.67 Its size is equal to that of St. Denys in France. It is a seaport. There are to be seen the remains of two ancient convents, one of Dominicans,68 and the other of the order of St.
p.33Francis. 69 At musket-shot from the town there was formerly a convent of nuns on the sea-shore, and there remains of it a tower called the Nunnery, upon which the nuns used to light torches to enable vessels to come into harbour during the night.70
In the Dominican convent there was an image of
p.34the Virgin, formerly held in the greatest reverence in Ireland, 71 which arrived there in a miraculous manner. The tide brought a piece of wood on to the sands opposite the town,72 which several fishermen tried to carry off, the wood being rare in this country, but they could not move it; they harnessed ten horses to it without effect, and the reflux of the tide brought it near the Dominican convent. Two monks raised it on their shoulders and put it in the court-yard of the convent; and the prior had in the night a vision that the image of our Lady was in this piece of wood; which was found there. So say the Catholics, who have still a great devotion towards it; but the Dominicans having been persecuted by the English settlers carried it elsewhere.73
From Johol I came by sea to Dongarvan74
p.35a small town, where there is a fine castle of which the Irish were masters. The harbour is very bad, and this year Captain Antonia, a Spaniard, an excellent seaman, lost there a handsome frigate, with which he was chasing the small Parliamentary vessels. I slept at Casteltames eight miles from Dongarvan, and eighteen from Johal.
The next day I came to Waterfort, in French the fort of water, a fine town, extremely populous, of the size of Tours. It has a small river which brings shipping within five miles, to a place called Passage, where I crossed the river, and pursued my way to Wachefort, in French the washed fort, where I arrived in one day.
This town is very populous, owing to its great commerce. The fortress is a small square, regularly enough fortified and washed by the sea. At the foot of this castle are many ruins of old churches, amongst others that of the Holy Trinity, towards which the women have great reverence, and come there in solemn procession. The oldest march first and the others follow, then take three turns round the ruins, make a reverence to the remains, kneel and recommence this ceremony many times. I have noticed them at this devotion three and four hours.
The people of Wachefort came principally from France,75 when Guillaume le Conquereur, (whom
p.36the English call William the Conqueror,) a natural son of the Duke of Normandy, conquered England, made himself king of it, and gave the Norman code of laws to the inhabitants.