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O'Higgins - Ó hUigin - d'Eguino

Uí hUigin - Ó hUigin - O'Higgins - Higgins


Hereditary Poets (contd.)

As Hereditary Poets to the Kings and Chiefs of Ireland the O’Higgins were confirmed as members of the Gaelic nobility and raised to the highest social status possible. Over time, in return for their scholarship and poetry they came under the immediate patronage of the major houses of Ireland particularly in Ulster and Connacht, including Ó Conor, Ó Neill, Ó Rourke, Maguire, Ó Doherty, Mac Dermot and Ó Gara.

The earliest recorded O’Higgins poet was Flaithbheartach the ‘Bard of Boirinn’ who flourished about 930 AD at Ballindoon near Lough Arrow in County Sligo. From the various Annals we know that he was followed by many of his family who claimed their hereditary right to poetry. In fact from the 14th to the 17th century 48 members of the O’Higgins family are recorded as hereditary poets including among others: Tadhg Mór Ó hUiginn (d.1315), Giolla na Naomh Ó hUiginn (d. 1349), Raghnall Ó hUiginn (d. 1325), Niall Ó hUiginn (d. 1340), Tadhg Óg mac Giolla Choluim Ó hUiginn (d. 1391), Uilliam Ó hUiginn (d. 1378), Ruaidhri Ruadh Ó hUiginn (d. 1425), Fearghal Ruadh mac Taidhg mheic Giolla Choluim Ó hUiginn, Tadhg Óg mac Taidhg mheic Giolla Choluim Ó hUiginn (d. 1448), Tuathal Ó hUiginn (d. 1450), Brian Ó hUiginn (d. 1476), Domhnall mac Briain Uí Uiginn (d. 1502), Pilip Bocht Ó hUiginn (d. 1487), Seán mac Ruaidhri Uí Uiginn, and Tadhg Dall Ó hUiginn (1550-1617).