Limerick

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Re: Limerick

Postby David Entwistle » Sun May 03, 2015 11:19 pm

I'm still possibly confused about the history of the Faha Stone ... The Oxford University Museum of Natural History web site says, of the Faha Stone:

The Rev. Robert Blakeney was an Oxford graduate whose ministry was in the parish of South Elm in Somerset. Perhaps the meteorite was found in the rectory after his death, for it was the new rector’s younger brother, the Rev. John W. Griffith, who presented it to the University of Oxford in 1825.


This is supported by caption to Etheldred Benett's watercolour painting of the meteorite held by the Geological Society.

Image

The caption reads:

Sketch of a Meteoric Stone which fell on the estate of the late Reverend Mr Blakeney near Patricks Well in the County of Limerick in September 1813, and which was presented to the University of Oxford by the Reverend John Griffiths of Bishopstrow, Wiltshire in May 1825 - weight 19 pounds. The streaked and dotted part is the fracture.


As I understand it Reverend Robert Blakeney was the son of William Blakeney, Esq., of Mount Blakeney who married Gertrude, daughter of Richard Smyth, Esq., of Ballynatray.

So, as well as being rector of St Mary Magdelene Church in Great Elm, in Somerset, Reverend Robert Blakeney owned extensive estates south of Limerick, Ireland, known as Mount Blakeney and Thomastown. Upon his death, and having no children of his own, his will was contested. The notice of his death is included here. The extent of the Mount Blakeney and Thomastown estates, will be detailed in the account of that dispute. The sale catalogue for the goods of Rev. Robert Blakeney, may also be of interest.

One day I hope to read those documents. Good luck to anyone that gets there first. If the estate includes Patrick's Well, let me know. ;)
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Re: Limerick

Postby brasky12 » Mon May 04, 2015 3:06 pm

It is confusing David, here are my two cents -

The 59lb specimen : fell 'on the lands of Brasky' and is now in the National Museum, Dublin
The 24lb specimen : fell 'on the lands of Faha', the Tuthill estate, and is now unaccounted for
The 17lb specimen : fell 'on the lands of Scagh, in the neighbourhood of Patrickswell' and is now in the MNH, Oxford.

So the identification of the Oxford specimen with the 'Faha stone' is maybe misleading, as the references to Faha in the original accounts are in connection only with the two larger stones, and specifically the now missing 24-pounder.

As for the Mount Blakeney and Thomastown estate, I can literally see those lands as I type these words... but I'm about 20 miles SE of Adare. So it would be interesting to do more research on the connection between Robert Blakeney and the 17lb meteorite.
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Re: Limerick

Postby David Entwistle » Mon May 04, 2015 8:40 pm

brasky12 wrote:It is confusing David, here are my two cents -

The 59lb specimen : fell 'on the lands of Brasky' and is now in the National Museum, Dublin
The 24lb specimen : fell 'on the lands of Faha', the Tuthill estate, and is now unaccounted for
The 17lb specimen : fell 'on the lands of Scagh, in the neighbourhood of Patrickswell' and is now in the MNH, Oxford.

So the identification of the Oxford specimen with the 'Faha stone' is maybe misleading, as the references to Faha in the original accounts are in connection only with the two larger stones, and specifically the now missing 24-pounder.

As for the Mount Blakeney and Thomastown estate, I can literally see those lands as I type these words... but I'm about 20 miles SE of Adare. So it would be interesting to do more research on the connection between Robert Blakeney and the 17lb meteorite.


Yes, I agree that the meteorite at Oxford is most likely not Faha, from the Tuthill Estate, but more likely the Scagh specimen. That's assuming the Mount Blakeney Estate isn't big enough to encompass the Tuthill property too, which I don't believe it is. I'll make some plans to get over to the record office and see what the papers say.
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Re: Limerick

Postby brasky12 » Tue May 05, 2015 6:14 pm

In 1851 Mount Blakeney was 563 statute acres and Thomastown 953 acres, nowhere near enough to stretch all the way to Faha, at least at that date.

I've been reading Kieron Heard's account, bizarre that both Seymour and Lindsay would misinterpret the 1818 letter as being written by Tuthill when it was almost certainly Maxwell's own words. Although Kieron also mixes up the Scagh and Faha falls, if I'm reading it correctly.

The slightly ambiguous wording of Higgins' article has contributed to the confusion, e.g. the RDS site has Tuthill as the eye-witness rather than Maxwell.

Also interesting that Crofton Croker confirms that the largest stone was in Tuthill's possession in 1824.

Finbarr.
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Re: Limerick

Postby Monica Price (OUMNH) » Fri Sep 04, 2015 10:54 am

Hello all,
This is an interesting conundrum and various people have tried unravelling it, although I've not seen anything published as a result. The label that accompanies the specimen in the Oxford collection (shown here) says that it is the Faha, but I do not know when that label was written and whether the penciled date has any significance. Whoever wrote it did get the college wrong (Griffiths was a Queen's College man), but to get a detail such as Faha wrong does seem strange. Incidentally, Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable 1894 refers to the Oxford meteorite as being the Adare, but the source of that information is not given, and I'd regard it as very dubious. If anyone can resolve the mystery, I'd be delighted to hear!
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OUMNH-Mt002-LimerickLabel.jpg
Label for the 'Faha' in the Oxford University Museum of Natural History Collection
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Re: Limerick

Postby Kieron » Fri Sep 04, 2015 2:10 pm

I am not sure that I have followed the arguments correctly. However, if we are to believe Maxwell's account of the Scagh stone as being 17lb, how can that be the stone at Oxford - Nevil Story-Maskelyne recorded the Oxford stone as 18lb 11 oz in 1865 and this was confirmed by Prior in 1923.

Also, although the caption on the Benett watercolour states that the stone fell on Rev Blakeney's estate, do we necessarily believe that?

Regards, Kieron
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Re: Limerick

Postby Kieron » Fri Sep 04, 2015 2:15 pm

Monica Price (OUMNH) wrote: Incidentally, Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable 1894 refers to the Oxford meteorite as being the Adare, but the source of that information is not given, and I'd regard it as very dubious. If anyone can resolve the mystery, I'd be delighted to hear!



Hello Monica, and welcome to BIMS.

My understanding is that the names Adare and Limerick were originally used interchangably to describe the same event.

Regards, Kieron
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Re: Limerick

Postby Monica Price (OUMNH) » Fri Sep 04, 2015 2:26 pm

Thank you for your welcome, Kieron.
I wonder how far the Blakeney estates extended, or what separate blocks of land it may have comprised. Perhaps the stone came into Blakeney's hands by an alternative route but was mis-recorded as coming from his estates.
The actual wording in Brwester is 'On September 10th, 1813, at Adare, in Limerick,. fell a similar stone, weighing 17 lbs., now in the Oxford Museum' (the similarity being to the Wold Cottage).
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Re: Limerick

Postby Kieron » Fri Sep 04, 2015 3:15 pm

Hi Monica,

As you say, Blakeney might have aquired it some other way. I believe it was common practice for the clergy to collect 'curiosities'. The same thing certainly happened with the Ashdon meteorite.

Regards, Kieron
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Re: Limerick

Postby Kieron » Fri Sep 04, 2015 3:22 pm

Perhaps Blakeney was a 'parson-naturalist'

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parson-naturalist
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