Ardea Castle Ruins, Co. Kerry
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Description

This castle, now in total ruins, stands on a cliff face overlooking Kenmare Bay at the mouth of the Clonee River. It was an impressive structure with six foot thick walls and was built by and named after Aodh Beanan, the ancestor of the O'Moriarty clan and the father of Mor Mumhan, maternal ancestor of the O'Sullivan clan. Aodh had 12 sons and died in 621 A.D. The castle was often referred to as the mansion house of the Moriartys, who were the original owners. It remained in O'Moriarty possession until the early part of the 13th century when they peacefully gave up Ardea Castle and Castle Drummond in the parish of Kilgarrylander, to the O'Sullivans and became their tenants. The O'Sullivans were tenants under MacCarthy Mór. In 1603 the castle was surrendered intact to the English but was later re-granted to the O’Sullivan family. During the Cromwellian wars the castle was slighted and several walls fell into the sea. Phi lip O'Sullivan of Ardea Castle followed James II to France after 1690. The castle was occupied by the Coote family from c. 1738 to 1756. Some sources say it was a castle of twin towers plus a banqueting hall. Now very little left of the castle and the site is very hazardous.

There are 32 castles or manors known to be associated with the O'Sullivan clan. 4 are still extant.

• Ardea Castle, Co. Kerry
• Carriganass Castle, Co. Cork
• Dunkerron Castle, Co. Kerry
• Reenadisert Castle / Court, Co. Cork

More about Irish Castles you will find HERE.