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O'Higgins - Ó hUigin - d'Eguino

Uí hUigin - Ó hUigin - O'Higgins - Higgins

History

Kilbeg - Choill Beag

Another important branch of the family were Lords of Kilbeg (Choill Beag ~ Little Wood) in Co. Westmeath. It is recorded that in 1489 Brian Ó hUiginn was head of this family. In 1490, his briother John who was the Chief Poet of Ireland died at Kilbeg. Brian's son was called Carbry (d. 1505) and he like his uncle John was also "ollamh re filidheacta" (professor of poetry) based in Westmeath.

Tadhg of Kilbeg had been married to a daughter of another local Chieftain, The O'Brennan. In 1620 Tadhg surrendered his lands to King James I in order to have them re-granted to him with a legal title. Tadhg received only 180 acres of his land in return but with all courts leet and baron. Tadhg, now Baron of Kilbeg, had a daughter Ellinor who was the wife of Cuchonnact O'Daly of Dalystown. In 1638 Tadg's son John O'Higgins of Kilbeg recorded his father's death at Kilbeg in 1633 in the Funeral Entries with the Ulster King of Arms in Dublin. Tadhg was buried in the Parish Church of Ardnorroghire near Kilbeg in Co. Westmeah.

Having inherited his father's title and lands at Kilbeg, John O'Higgins lost them under Cromwell's Act of Settlement in 1652. After the restoration of King Charles II of England (1660) other lands in Galway and Roscommon were granted in 1677 to the O'Higgins of Kilbeg at Carropaden, Beagh and Keelogue in consideration of those that they had previously lost in Westmeath. But by 1690 these O'Higgins had lost their lands again as a result of their support for James II of England against William of Orange, consequently the Kilbeg line were once again landless and eventually became obscured. 

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