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Wicklow History - The Last County

The county of Wicklow is so named after its principal town. Although the name comes from its former Norse settlers, there is some confusion as to whether its origin is in Viking Alo (Viking meadow) or Wiggingne Lough (the lake of ships). Whichever is the case, the name Wicklow has been passed down to us. In Irish the county is known as Cill Mhantain (Mantan’s Church). Saint Patrick on his return to Ireland is reputed to have landed at what is now Wicklow town. The point of his landing is thought to be Travelahawk beach, near the Black Castle. He and his followers were stoned by the hostile locals. One of his priests received a blow in the face and due to the resulting deformities he became known as Mantan or Gubby. Later the unfortunate priest was to return and establish a church in the area.

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