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The Historical Legacy of Eglish Village

The village of Eglish and the surrounding rural area, through which the River Oona flows into the Blackwater along the Tyrone/Armagh border replete with historical significance.

When Patrick and his disciples began evangelizing Ireland, they found no words in the language of Ireland that would adequately describe themselves, their buildings or their religious practices. Their solution was to borrow the appropriate Latin terms, which were assimilated into Irish and, over time, subject to the rules of Irish pronunciation, spelling and grammar. As well as words for several kinds of church buildings, these Latin borrowings provide the Irish with quite a list of other well-known ‘church words’.

Eglish is a word derived from the Latin ecclesia meaning “church”. Ecclais (‘Eglish’ or ‘Aglish’, the Ordnance Survey versions of the word) was introduced into Irish in the early Christian era, but the precise date is uncertain.

Eglish was an early monastic foundation and may have been a pre-Christian worship center. The modern village lies in south County Tyrone on the B45 between Caledon and Dungannon. At the 2001 Census, it had a population of 93. The village has grown in a dispersed form with a mix of housing, industry and services.

Eglish Historical Society

Eglish Historical Society was formed in 2005. It is a cross-community body whose members came together to research, record and celebrate the area’s rich history. The Society’s recent project, The Book of Eglish – Where Heritage Lottery Fund, has supported the Oona Flows, a heritage trail and this website.

The Book of Eglish

The Book of Eglish: Where the Oona Flows was launched in December 2011. The book, over 500 pages, hard-backed and printed in full color, is available to Eglish Historical Society Subscribers.

Heritage Trail

Eglish Historical Society 2012 established a Heritage Trail, which identifies 42 sites of interest in the area. Several of the sites have been marked with plaques. The four graveyards of Eglish (Roman Catholic, Presbyterian and Church of Ireland) have been surveyed and mapped. A plaque at each cemetery shows all graves that we have been able to identify.

As we explore the historical legacy of the English Village, we gain a deeper understanding of how places carry the imprints of the past. The buildings, streets, and landmarks each tell a story about the people who lived there and the events that shaped their lives. Similarly, when we broaden our scope to the landscapes of an entire county, we can trace the threads of history across a wider tapestry. To further extend your journey into the past, don’t miss our comprehensive guide on Discovering Greene County: Tracing History Through Its Landscapes.

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