Situated on a rise in s level landscape. A church of Clonmaduff is listed in the ecclesiastical taxation (1302-06) of Pope Nicholas IV (Cal. doc. Ire. 5, 256). Ussher (1622) describes the church and chancel of Clonmaduff as ruinous (Erlington 1847-64, 1, lxxxv), and this is confirmed by Dopping (1682-5) when the graveyard was not enclosed (Ellision 1972, 12). A community of Franciscan friars became established at a house (ME030-010----) c. 500m to the SE early in the 18th century and it lasted until 1826. They used the Black Church as their burial ground and two headstones commemorate the priors (Cogan 1862-70, 1, 121-4) within a rectangular graveyard (dims c. 40m WNW-ESE; c. 40m NNE-SSW) defined by masonry walls. The grass-covered foundations (Wth 0.7-0.8m; max. H 0.7m) of an undivided church (int. dims 18.25m WNW-ESE; 4m NNE-SSW) survive together with the W gable which has a cusped ogee-headed window. The belfry does not survive on the gable, but the crudely made base of a font, which is an octagonal stone (dim. of top 0.3-0.35m; dim of base 0.45m) with a conical perforation is almost buried nearby.
The above description is derived from the published 'Archaeological Inventory of County Meath' (Dublin: Stationery Office, 1987). In certain instances the entries have been revised and updated in the light of recent research.
Compiled by: Michael Moore
Date of upload/revision: 2 January 2015
Description Source: National Monuments Service, Department of Arts, Heritage Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs.