Fraoch Oileán and the Knights Hospitallers

Ed Mooney Photography

Fraoch Oileán and the Knights Hospitallers (1)

Johnstown is a small village just outside Naas in County Kildare. I have passed by it countless times over the years and just by chance whilst hunting for a standing stone I came across a small little graveyard and church with an amazing history. There are signs of early human activity in the area dating back to ancient times, the most notable being the Holed stone which rests in a field towards the Southern end of the village. The stone is linked to an astronomical alignment to the summer solstice. Today though we are going to have a look at the medieval church at the other end of the village. Originally known as Fraoch Oileán the village name changed to Johnstown, presumably taking the name from the religious order whom established themselves in the area.

Fraoch Oileán and the Knights Hospitallers (2)

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Fraoch Oileán and the Knights Hospitallers (4)

Not to be confused with their infamous Templar brothers, the Knights Hospitallers  or The Order…

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