Carolans Harp, Clonalis House, Castlerea, Co. Roscommon.
Photographs courtesy of Fáilte Ireland photographic section. Used by permission.
|Current Location||Clonalis House|
This harp is privately owned by the Ó Conor Family, as it has been for generations.
Please scroll down to see closeup details on this harp. All photographs are provided courtesy of Fáilte Ireland and are used by their kind permission.
There is a tradition in the Ó Conor family that this harp was at one time owned and played by the famous harper Turlough Ó Carolan, and the claim that he may have played this instrument cannot necessarily be dismissed. Although it is tempting to look at this harp and assign it as belonging to the period after Carolans death (1738), there is not enough comparative data to accurately date these instruments judging them by constructional styles alone, and automatic assumptions should not be made.
The Ó Conor family were certainly among Carolans greatest patrons and friends, and during his life he paid many visits to their home, spending much time there. It is therefore not suprising that we should find amongst the great harpers compositions many fine tunes dedicated to the Ó Conors, e.g. Denis Ó Conor, Mrs. Ó Conor, Charles Ó Conor. For more information on the history of the Ó Conors and Clonalis house please visit the Clonalis history page on their website.