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Blessington

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Blessington, historically known as Ballycomeen, is a town on the River Liffey in Wicklow, Ireland, near the border with Kildare. It is around 25 km south-west of Dublin, and is situated on the N81 road which connects Dublin to Tullow.HistoryEvidence of Bronze Age activity in the area is demonstrated by the spectacular Blessington gold lunula, now in the British Museum. Blessington was originally called Munfine, and in the Medieval period was part of the lordship of Threecastles. In 1667, Michael Boyle (the younger), Archbishop of Dublin and Lord Chancellor of Ireland, bought the lordship of Threecastles, previously the property of the Cheevers for £1,000. Boyle received a Royal Charter to establish the town of Blessington, in the townland of Munfine, as a borough. Construction of Blessington House was begun in 1673 and afterwards St. Mary’s Church in Blessington, which was completed in 1683. On Boyle's death in 1702 his son Murrough Boyle, 1st Viscount Blesington and Baron Boyle, inherited the Blessington estate. Murrough’s son, Charles, died in 1732 without an heir and the estate was inherited by his sister Anne, then her son William Stewart, 1st Earl of Blessington and Baron Stewart. Stewart died in 1769 without an heir and the estate passed to Charles Dunbar, a great grandson of Murrough Boyle, who also died heirless in 1778, when the estate passed to Wills Hill of Hillsborough, County Down, a great great grandson of Michael Boyle and the first Marquess of Downshire. The Hills held the estate until 1908.
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