Cóiced Ol nEchmacht

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Cóiced Ol nEchmacht is an ancient name for the province of Connacht, Ireland.

Etymology and extent[edit]

Cóiced Ol nEchmacht may be translated as the portion/fifth/province of the Ol nEchmacht, also called the Fir Ol nEchmacht ("Fir" means "men"). The name nEchmacht has been linked by some scholars[who?] to the tribe called Nagnatae on Ptolemy's 2nd century AD world map.

They were divided up into three main tribes: the Fir Craibe, or Fir na Criabe; the Tuatha Taiden; and the Gamanraige. Each tribe ruled respective kingdoms within Ol nEchmacht.

  • The kingdom of the Fir Craibe extended from Limerick to the Palace of Fidach, a place thought to be located in north-eastern Aidhne. In later centuries the territory south of Aidhne, Thomond, would be annexed by Munster, which it is still counted as part of.
  • The kingdom of Tuatha Taiden extended from Fidach eastwards to and across the Shannon towards Tara, and was probably co-extensive with Hy-Many at its greatest extent.
  • The Gamanraige ruled the territory between the Gallimhe or Galway river, to the Drowes and Duff rivers in the north-east. Their capital was Rath Eochaidh, later called Cruachan.

This territory seems to have been Ol nEchmacht proper.

It was only with the rise of the Connachta dynasty that the term Fir Ol nEchmacht was dropped and the province was renamed Connacht.

Nations of Ol nEchmacht[edit]

Nations known to have resided in Ol nEchmacht during this era included:

External links[edit]