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Inis Fraoigh

Is oileán beag é Inis Fraoigh atá suite amach ó chósta na Rosann.

Tá an toileán thart fá mhíle cearnach i méid.

Cosiúil le go leor oileáin eile thart fá chósta na héireann, tá stair fhada ag baint le hInis Fraoigh. In aimisr na luath-Chríostaíochta, bhí an t-oileán á rialú ag Niall na Naoi nGiallach, Taoiseach aitiúil a bhí ina Ard-Rí ar éirinn níos moille ina shaol.

Sa tréimhse mheánaoiseach, bhí an t-oileán faoi cheannas shliocht Néill Aodh Rua Ó Domhnaill agus Clann Dálaigh.

Sa fichiú haois, bhí pobal dlúth de 36 teaghlach ina gcónaí ar Inis Fraoigh.

Bhí cónaí orthu i gclacháin - grúpaí de thithe beaga a bhí scaipthe fud fad an oileáin.

Theagasc dhá údar cháiliúla i Scoil Inis Fraoigh, Peadar Ó'Donnell agus Séamus Ó Grianna.

Ar nós go leor d'oileáin eile na héíreann, bhog cuid mhór de mhuintir an oileáin do dtí an mhórthír i lár na 1970í. Chuaigh dream darbh ainm na 'Screamers' a chonaí ar an oileán i 1972 agus bhí said ansin go dtí 1991.

Inishfree

There's something spiritual in the air at Inis Fraoigh. It may come from the ancient mass rock, a reminder of the penal laws that once forbade freedom of religious practise in Ireland. Or perhaps it's the memory of a commune of 'screamers' who made the island their home in the late 20th century. Whatever the reason, the island inspires reflection and meditation.

Inis Fraoigh's heather meadows and rocky coves go back a long way. Controlled by Niall of the Nine Hostages in early Christian period, it went on to host the clan of Red Hugh O'Donnell. In more modern times, a community of tight-knit islanders left en masse in the 1970s, clearing the island for a commune that "would wail away, happy in their private location," according to one author. 'Screamers' followed a primal therapy focused on cleansing angst by bawling one's lungs out.

It's a quieter place today, though a number of former islanders and their descendents, joined by mainlanders keen to live closer to nature, have lately come back to Inis Fraoigh. Spirituality remains at the island's core, but these new islanders complement that by offering a very human welcome to the walkers, birdwatchers, anglers and divers who visit them.

Location: In the bay between An Clochán Liath and Ailt an Chorráin

Size: 1.6km x 1.6km