Newabbey Graveyard, Kilcullen

Map Reference N847093 (2847, 2093)

In the graveyard near Newabbey House, to the east of Kilcullen, is the very fine double effigy of Rowland FitzEustace, Baron of Portlester, and his wife Margaret D'Artois. They founded a friary here in 1486 for the Observant Franciscans. He died in 1496. The sculpture has been greatly weathered with much of the detail of the lady removed. However it is now protected by an arched shelter. A Catholic church was built on the site of the abbey but this is now a ruin, reduced, for the most part, to low walls. Fragments, presumably from the Eustace tomb, are now built into the wall of this ruin. The figure sculpture includes St Catherine and St Michael. The friary was suppressed in 1539 and in 1540 it was occupied by Thomas Eustace, lord of Kilcullen. The friars were finally expelled in 1547 and in 1582 the house at Kilcullen was granted to Edmund Spencer.

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