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O'Higgins - Ó hUigin - d'Eguino

Uí hUigin - Ó hUigin - O'Higgins - Higgins


Lishiggin ~ Lios Uí hUiginn

Located quite close to the O'Higgins seat at Dogherne in Co. Sligo there is another location associated with the family. Lishiggin or in Gaelic Lios Uí hUiginn meaning O'Higgins' ringfort which is also in Achonry Parish.

Ringforts were fortified settlements in use in Ireland from the Iron Age up to the Early Medieval Period. While they were used for defence they were also used to signify aristocracy and nobility.

The more elaborate the structure the higher the rank or status of the Chief who resided within the fort. These forts were constructed of earthen banks that were several feet thick within which the person of status would reside accompanied by his family, colleagues and servants. Ringforts built for defensive reasons where often made of earth and stone and were called cathar, caiseal or dún. A ringfort called a Lios was an enclosure more likely to be used by a Chief who was a scholar.

Lios Uí hUiginn or Lishiggin was one such fort and must have been an O'Higgins seat since at least the 6th century. The only written records we have are from the 17th century when in 1617 King James I made two grants of the lands at Lishiggin to Gillarnanev O'Higgin and to Cormac O'Higgin.