Ards (territory)

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Ards is the name of several different historical territorial divisions all located on the Ards Peninsula in modern-day County Down, Northern Ireland.

It was once an ancient Irish district that was possessed very early on by the Mac Giolla Mhuire sept (English: Gilmore).[1][2] Their power was broken by the Irish O'Neills and MacCartans and the Hiberno-Norman Whites and Savages.[2] By 1333 it is recorded under the Normanised name of Del Art and noted as one of the seven counties of the Earldom of Ulster.[3] It is also the name of a former barony, which was split into Ards Lower and Ards Upper by 1851.[4]


  1. ^ Ireland's History in Maps - Baronies
  2. ^ a b Bell, Robert; The book of Ulster surnames, page 78-79. The Black Staff Press, 2003. ISBN 0-85640-602-3
  3. ^ Bardon, Jonathan, A History of Ulster, page 45. The Black Staff Press, 2005. ISBN 0-85640-764-X
  4. ^ Database of Irish Historical Statistics - Literacy Notes