The Writing On The Wall – M by Maura Kennedy


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Maura tells us ‘Lackeen Castle or tower house is in the parish of Lorrha in North Tipperary. It was built by the O’Kennedy family in the 1500’s. The Stowe Missal was found there in 1735, concealed within the walls.nnMore recently, Lackeen Castle has revealed another secret – etched into its ancient plaster are the thoughts of its last Gaelic Lord, Donogh O’Kennedy. Written in Latin, these are interpreted as Donogh O’Kennedy cursing how things had changed since his castle and lands, comprising over 3,000 acres, was confiscated by the Cromwellians and he was sent across the Shannon to Connaught.nnAD 1657 Donogh O’Kennedy                                AD 1657 Donogh O’KennedynnO JUREM                                                                 OH CURSESnnO QUAE                                                                    OH WHATnnMUTATO                                                                 A CHANGEnnRUM RUM RUM                                                  STRANGE STRANGE STRANGEnnThere are three examples of the M symbol or the VV symbol on the third floor, positioned close to a window or a wall niche, said to have been associated with The Virgin Mary.nnThis work, together with the 3 other works, relates to the theme of Hidden Histories as these markings or ancient graffiti are on less-accessible walls of Lackeen Castle and will not be known by or have been seen by many.nnI would like to acknowledge the use of research and photographs from work by David Broderick, a wonderful historian from Lorrha. I am very grateful for his permission, and I have also used his title ‘Writing on the Wall’ from an article he published in Archaeology Ireland, Autumn 2020.nnOils on Canvas paper on wood panel 30cm x 23cm


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