Trisha Shetty

Ferns Cathedral

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Location  Ferns, County Wexford
Denomination  Church of Ireland
Province  Leinster
Country  Ireland
Website  Ferns Cathedral
Ferns Cathedral
Dedication  St. Edan (Ædan) (Máedóc of Ferns)
Bishop(s)  The Right Reverend Michael Burrows
Address  Ferns Lower, Co. Wexford, Ireland
Diocese  Diocese of Cashel and Ossory
Burials  Diarmait Mac Murchada, Richard de Clare, 2nd Earl of Pembroke, Domhnall Caomhánach, Thomas Elrington
Similar  St John the Baptist Cathedral, Cloyne Cathedral, Trim Cathedral, Lis Cathedral - Ireland, St Laserian's Cathedral

The Cathedral Church of St Edan is a cathedral of the Church of Ireland in Ferns, County Wexford in Ireland. It is in the ecclesiastical province of Dublin. Until 1949, the designation of the Cathedral was the Cathedral Church of St. Ædan, a variant spelling of Edan or Aidan.

Contents

Previously the cathedral of the Diocese of Ferns, it is now one of six cathedrals in the United Diocese of Cashel, Ferns and Ossory.

History

The original medieval Roman Catholic cathedral was built by Bishop St. John in the 1230s. A Catholic cathedral, also dedicated to Saint Aidan, was erected in Enniscorthy in the nineteenth century to a design by Pugin.

The building was burnt down in Elizabethan times by the O'Byrnes of Wicklow, and only a small portion of the ruins remain. Although Queen Elizabeth I of England ordered it rebuilt, only a section of the quire was restored. This was subsequently further altered in the early 1800s. Of the surviving medieval fabric the blind arcading of the chancel is of particular note as are the north and south lancets and viscae of the East Wall. The central lancets are a conjectural restoration. There is a very fine medieval episcopal effigy by the font and the remains of some pillars of the quire arcade are to be seen in the walls to the west of the new chancel arch. The eighteenth or early nineteenth century west tower may well be on the site of a crossing of the mediaeval cathedral. An earlier belief that the present cathedral was part of the nave of the older building was based on the existence of remains of a separate medieval church, on the same axis, some way to the east. The chancel arcade and Eastern lancets challenge this conjecture as does the marked difference of floor level which, in the Eastern fragment, is some metres lower.

Richard de Clare, 2nd Earl of Pembroke (of the first creation), Lord of Leinster, Justiciar of Ireland (1130 – 20 April 1176), also commonly known as Strongbow (French: Arc-Fort), is sometimes said to have been interred at Ferns Cathedral, but there is no evidence for this, and Giraldus Cambrensis, who was a contemporary eyewitness, specifically notes that he was buried within sight of the cross at Christ Church cathedral in Dublin.

Vandalism

The cathedral was vandalised in early 2009 by youths. Many panes of glass were broken in the cathedral and the pane of glass protecting the magnificent east window was cracked. Headstones in the adjacent St Peter's Cemetery were knocked over, but St.Peter's cemetery and church are under the control of both Catholic and Anglican Churches in the town. Vandalism is common to all 3 churches in the town and also the Abbey.

References

Ferns Cathedral Wikipedia


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