The stories told on these pages are from  a collection of folklore compiled by schoolchildren in Ireland in the 1930s. 
The children recorded (over&nbsp740,000 handwritten pages) of this material from their parents, grandparents and neighbours.

These are their stories in their own words.

St. Patrick, Boyle and the trout

SCHOOL: Tamhnach tSeiscinn | ADDRESS: Kilcolman, Co. Limerick

St Patrick and the Trout. Proud Irish Heritage.
St Patrick. Trout.

In Boyle there is a well known locally as “St Patrick’s Well.” It is said in the locality that St Patrick blessed this well. This well is situated on the bank of the Boyle River and the river itself is only about two yards from the well.

In the olden times the well was much visited by pilgrims but no pilgrims have visited it during the past few hundred years.

Situated in the front of the well there is a flagstone with two impressions in it. The people of the locality say that it was on this flagstone that St Patrick knelt and that the two impressions were made by St Patrick’s knees.

About fifteen yards from the well and situated in the river there is a big stone and this stone is shaped like a chair. Local people say that St Patrick sat on this stone while he washed his feet in the Boyle River.

There is a story told by the old people of Boyle in connection with St Patrick’s Well.

After St Patrick’s visit to the well there appeared in the well a large trout which for centuries evaded the baits and nets of local and foreign anglers. One day however a soldier who was stationed at Boyle barracks decided to try his skill with the rod with the result that he caught this famous trout.

He brought the fish to the barracks and gave it to the cook to prepare for supper. The cook put the gridiron on the fire and put the fish on the grid-iron.

When the fish was on the fire for about one minute it gave one jump through the cook house window made its way to Boyle River and swam back to its old haunts.

There are people to this day who say they saw the fish and they refer to him as the trout with the mark of grid-iron bars on its back. But during recent years this fish has disappeared.

Some people say that he can be seen in his old haunts on every St Patrick’s Day.


The Schools’ Collection, Volume 0234, Page 157” by Dúchas © National Folklore Collection, UCD is licensed under CC BY-NC 4.0.

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