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Rinn Ghaoithín
genitive: Rinn Ghaoithín
(Irish)
Ringaheen
(English)
Glossary
rinn point, headland
Explanatory note
  • English

    There is some variation in the historical forms of this anglicised place-name, but O’Donovan’s suggested ‘Rinn Gaoithín’ [Rinn Ghaoithín] (11) (see also BPP p.82) is consistent with most of the evidence.

    ‘Ringenehine’ (3), ‘Ringongheene’ (5a) and ‘Ringanagheene’ (5c) appear to be corrupt (see LnÉ i p.xiv). The local pronunciation with stress on the final syllable (12) may be due to the tendency in Yola, the dialect of English formerly spoken in this area of Wexford, to stress final syllables (see O’Rahilly, 1972 pp.94‒8; see also Dolan & Ó Muirithe, 1996 p.33). This would go some way towards explaining why there is no clear reflex of the vowel of the original initial syllable of Gaoithín, which would be expected to produce -e- or -ea- in anglicisation here. Note, however, that the related surname Ó Gaoithín is normally now only found as Gahan in anglicised form in the southeast, with penultimate -a- as also seen in historical versions of this place-name.

    Although the personal name Gaoithín does not occur in the genealogies of the Fotharta, who gave their name to the barony of Forth, the surname Ó Gaoithín is attested in anglicised form as ‘Simon Ogehyn’ (see Hore vi p.8) in the northern parish of Ferns in the thirteenth century. Also in that parish was the now-defunct place-name ‘Ballegehin’ (Inq. CI 53), which may derive from Baile Uí Ghaoithín “Ó Gaoithín’s town(land)”. Woulfe (SGG p.539) notes that a family of this surname were once chiefs of Síol Éalaigh (Shillelagh) in south Wicklow and states that the name is now common in Wicklow and Wexford. While not necessarily indicative of a direct link with the present place-name, the longstanding presence of the surname Ó Gaoithín in the county is nevertheless worthy of note here. [A more recent suggestion as to the meaning of the final element is that it may be a diminutive form of gaoth “an inlet from the sea, a strand-stream left at low water” (Dinneen), which is not impossible given the presence of a stream on the boundary of this townland which eventually flows into Wexford Harbour (reference to be added). The word gaoth is not attested in the form gaoithín in place-names, but the suggestion still has merit.]

    It is clear that the generic element rinn cannot signify a promontory in the normal sense here; it may refer to the pointed contour located at the convergence of the streams on the southern boundary of the townland. (See RING (#54413), par. Tacumshin.)

Irish Grid

T 04097 12770

Archival records
Permanent link
https://www.logainm.ie/54050.aspx

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