Lewis’ Topographical Dictionary Ireland comprises of several counties, cities, boroughs, parish and villages – with historical and statistical descriptions – of Ireland.
PlaceThe Diocese of Armagh
ContentThe DIOCESE of ARMAGH comprehends the greater part of that county, and parts of those of Meath, Louth, Tyrone, and Londonderry : it comprises by computation a superficial area of 468,550 acres, of which 1300 are in Meath, 108,900 in Louth, 162,500 in Tyrone, and 25,000 in Londonderry.
It was anciently divided into two parts, the English and the Irish, now known as the Upper and Lower parts ; the English or Upper part embraces that portion which extends into the counties of Louth and Meath, and is subdivided into the rural deaneries of Drogheda, Atherdee or Ardee, and Dundalk ; and the Irish or Lower part comprehends the remaining portion of the diocese in the counties of Armagh, Tyrone, and Londonderry, and is subdivided into the rural deaneries of Creggan, Aghaloe, Duugannon, and Tullahog. In all ancient synods and visitations the clergy of the English and Irish parts were congregated separately, which practice is still observed, the clergy of the Upper part assembling for visitation at Drogheda, and those of the Lower at Armagh. The see of Clogher, on the first avoidance by death or translation, will, under the Church Temporalities' Act, become united to that of Armagh, and its temporalities will be vested in the Ecclesiastical Commissioners for Ireland.
There are 100,563 statute acres belonging to the See of Armagh, of which 87,809 are profitable land, the remainder being bog or mountain ; and the gross account of its yearly revenue on an average is about £17,670, arising from chief rents, fee farm's, and copyhold leases. On the death of the present primate the sum of £4500 is, under the above act, to be paid out of the revenue annually to the Ecclesiastical Commissioners. The chapter consists of a dean, precentor, chancellor, treasurer, archdeacon, and the four prebendaries of Mullaghbrack, Ballymore, Loughgall, and Tynan, with eight vicars choral, and an organist and choir. The dean and precentor are the only dignitaries for whom houses are provided ; live houses are assigned for the vicars choral and organist. Each dignity and prebend has care of souls annexed, as regards the benefice forming its corps. The economy estate of the cathedral yields an annual rental of £180. 1s. 5d., which is expended in the payment of salaries to the officers of the cathedral, and in defraying other charges incident to the building. The diocese comprises 88 benefices, of which, 14 are unions consisting of 45 parishes, and 74 consist of single parishes or portions thereof. Of these, 4 are in the gift of the Crown, 51 in that of the Lord-primate, 12 are in lay and corporation patronage, and 21 in clerical or alternate patronage. The total number of parishes or districts is 122, of which 91 are rectories or vicarages, 23 perpetual cures, 1 impropriate, and 7 parishes or districts without cure of souls ; there are 22 lay impropriations. The number of churches is 88, besides 11 other buildings in which divine service is performed, and of glebe-houses, 74.
In the R. C. Church the archbishopricic of Armagh, as originally founded, is the head or primacy of all Ireland ; and the same bishopricks are suffragan to it as in the Protestant Church. The R. C. diocese comprises 51 parochial benefices or unions, containing 120 places of worship, served by 51 parish priests and 65 coadjutors or curates. The parochial benefice of St. Peter, Drogheda, is held by the archbishop and the union of Armagh, Eglish, and Grange is annexed to the deanery.
There are 68 Presbyterian meeting-houses, and 44 belonging to other Protestant consenters. making in the whole 331 places of worship in the diocese.