Abandoned ireland


Affane House

Co. Waterford.

Documenting our Heritage

Affane House

Originally a 17th Century, 3 bay, 3 storey, gable-ended house to which a new front of 3 bays between  a 3 sided bow on each side was added in the 19th Century. The staircase of the house was screened by fluted Corinthian columns of wood.

The Battle of Affane was fought in county Waterford, in south-eastern Ireland, in 1565, between the forces of the Fitzgerald Earl of Desmond and the Butler Earl of Ormonde. The battle ended in the rout of the Desmond (or Geraldine) forces. It was one of the last private battles fought in Britain or Ireland.

Elizabeth I of England was furious that two noble houses had fought a private battle, defying Royal authority in the Kingdom of Ireland. The fact that both sides had displayed their banners in the battle was a particular affront to her as it was a symbolic rejection of the monopoly of the state on making war. Both Earls were summoned to London to explain their actions. However, the treatment of the dynasties was not even handed: the Earl of Ormonde, a cousin of the Queen's and a court favourite, managed to convince Elizabeth that it was the Geraldines who were at fault. As a result, both Desmond (who had been brought before the privy council on a litter) and his brothers, John and James, were arrested and detained in the Tower of London; it was seven years before the earl returned to Munster with his wife, Eleanor. This action contributed significantly to unrest in the province of Munster and, ultimately, to the first of the Desmond Rebellions in 1569.

The lands of Affane are said to have been given by one of the FitzGeralds to Sir Walter Raleigh

for a breakfast, a very high price to pay for bacon and eggs, and it was here that Sir Walter Raleigh planted the first cherry-tree in Ireland, bringing it from the Canary Islands to the Isle of Weeping.

Affane was later famous for producing the best cherries in the whole of Ireland. The legendary Old Countess of Desmond was said to have fallen to her death from one of these cherry trees at the grand age of 160 years old.

Affane House occupies the site of the earlier Affane Castle, birthplace of Valentine Greatrakes (1629-83), otherwise known as "The Stroker" who cured Scrofula and other diseases by stroking with his hands and by hypnotism and faith healing - Charles II of England was amongst his patients.

Affane was inherited by Valentines only daughter who married Major Edmund Browning and it then passed by inheritance to a branch of the Poers who were in residence at the house until 1954.

Despite it’s history Affane House is now derelict and abandoned with the rear wall of the house forming part of an active farm yard.

Affane House,