St. John's Well

Dublin Core


St. John's Well

Description of Well Item Type Metadata

1 Name of well and saint

St John’s Well

2 Townland, County, GPS

Ballintillen, Meath

3 Physical description of well and its surroundings

The well is located “in the townland of Ballintillen in Ughtyneill…the well which was near Ardemagh Bridge is marked on a map about 1909 but not on the first OS map in 1837” (French 2012: 54). Additionally, French notes that “the well was built of stone with a flag stone covering part of it. The well was square and the people prayed at each corner. Some people said that St Patrick discovered the well when he was in the district” (French 2012: 54).

4 Cure

Cures toothache, warts. French states that “to obtain the cure for warts the person washed the affected area in the well and tied a piece of cloth on the bush beside it. As soon as the cloth would be withered away the wart would be gone” (French 2012: 54).

5 Pattern day

French records that “pilgrims visited the well on St Johns Eve and on the 28 June. Stations were made at the well and pieces of cloth or a ribbon were tied to the bushes near the well…the pilgrim started the station with their back to the well and finished with their back to the well. The piece of cloth they left behind as a token was a sign that the disease was left behind” (French 2012: 54).

8 Stories

“Situated on the roadside just before Ardemagh Bridge Beryl Moore recorded the well in the 1970s as having the name “The Blessed Well”. When Dr. Moore visited the well she met a couple of people who said it was dedicated to St John. There was no memory of a pattern there though a Pattern Green was situated nearby. Robertstown being a St Brigid dedication suggests that the area was an important pagan site in the pre-Christian days, said Moore” (French 2012: 54).

9 Publications

French, Noel. 2012. Meath Holy Wells. Trim: Meath Heritage Centre.