Last updated
Solohead beg

Sulchóid Bheag
Ireland adm location map.svg
Red pog.svg
Solohead beg
Location in Ireland
Coordinates: 52°31′42″N8°09′55″W / 52.52844°N 8.1652266°W / 52.52844; -8.1652266 Coordinates: 52°31′42″N8°09′55″W / 52.52844°N 8.1652266°W / 52.52844; -8.1652266
Country Ireland
Province Munster
County County Tipperary
Dáil Éireann Tipperary
EU Parliament South constituency
97 m (318 ft)
Irish Grid Reference R888419

Sologhead beg or Solohead beg ( /ˌsɒləhədˈbɛɡ/ ; [1] from Irish : Sulchóid Bheag) [2] is a townland and civil parish in County Tipperary, Ireland, lying northwest of Tipperary town.

Irish language Goidelic (Gaelic) language spoken in Ireland and by Irish people

Irish is a Goidelic (Gaelic) language originating in Ireland and historically spoken by the Irish people. Irish is spoken as a first language in substantial areas of counties Galway, Kerry, Cork and Donegal, smaller areas of Waterford, Mayo and Meath, and a few other locations, and as a second language by a larger group of non-habitual speakers across the country.

A townland is a small geographical division of land used in Ireland. The townland system is of Gaelic origin, pre-dating the Norman invasion, and most have names of Irish Gaelic origin. However, some townland names and boundaries come from Norman manors, plantation divisions, or later creations of the Ordnance Survey. The total number of inhabited townlands was 60,679 in 1911. The total number recognised by the Irish Place Names database as of 2014 was 61,098, including uninhabited townlands, mainly small islands.

County Tipperary County in the Republic of Ireland

County Tipperary is a county in Ireland. It is located in the province of Munster. The county is named after the town of Tipperary, and was established in the early thirteenth century, shortly after the Norman invasion of Ireland. The population of the county was 159,553 at the 2016 census. The largest towns are Clonmel, Nenagh and Thurles.



In 968, Soloheadbeg was the location for the Battle of Sulcoit, where the Dalcassian King Mahon of Thomond and his brother Brian Ború defeated the viking Ivar, King of Limerick. In 1603, it was a stopping-point for Donal Cam O'Sullivan Beare during his epic march from Dunboy Castle in west Cork to O'Rourke's Castle in Leitrim.

The Battle of Sulcoit was fought in the year 968 between the Irish of the Dál gCais, led by Brian Boru, and the Vikings of Limerick, led by Ivar of Limerick. It was a victory for the Dál gCais and marked the end of Norse expansion in Ireland. It was also the first of three battles that highlight the career of Brian Boru. The battle took place during a military campaign led by Ivar of Limerick into Dál gCais territory. After the battle, the Dál gCais seized and burned the Viking stronghold of Limerick.

Annals of Inisfallen AI967.2: "A defeat of the foreigners of Luimnech by Mathgamain, son of Cennétig, at Sulchuait, and Luimnech was burned by him before noon on the following day."

Annals of Ulster U967.5: "Mathgamain son of Cennáitig, king of Caisel, plundered and burned Luimnech."

Mathgamain mac Cennétig Irish king

Mathgamain mac Cennétig was King of Munster from around 970 to his death in 976. He was the elder brother of Brian Bóruma.

Ivar of Limerick, died 977, was the last Norse king of the city-state of Limerick, and penultimate King of the Foreigners of Munster, reigning during the rise to power of the Dál gCais and the fall of the Eóganachta.

A proclamation offering a reward of 1000 pounds for information leading to the capture of those involved in the Soloheadbeg ambush Soloheadbeg proclomation.jpg
A proclamation offering a reward of 1000 pounds for information leading to the capture of those involved in the Soloheadbeg ambush

Soloheadbeg Ambush

The Soloheadbeg Ambush, said to be the first engagement of the Irish War of Independence, took place here on 21 January 1919. The event is commemorated by a monument at Solohead Cross, some 1.5 km northwest of Limerick Junction railway station, where a ceremony of remembrance is held each year on the anniversary of the ambush, which was led by Séumas Robinson, Seán Treacy, Dan Breen and Seán Hogan of the Third Tipperary Brigade. Details of the monument and photos can be found at Irish War Memorials Accounts of this ambush can be found in Ireland's Bureau of Military History where various 'Witness Statements' are kept. Members of the 'Old IRA' made these reports in exchange for Irish Army pensions following Independence from the UK. There are numerous references but Number WS1658 gives a starting point. Those involved on the day of the operation were four officers of the 3rd Tipperary Brigade IRA; Seán Treacy, Dan Breen, Seán Hogan (then only 17) and Séumas Robinson. They were joined by five other Volunteers: Tadhg Crowe, Mick McCormack, Paddy O'Dwyer (Hollyford), Michael Ryan (Donohill) and Seán O'Meara (Tipperary) — the latter two being cycle scouts. The monument has a wall with eight surnames of Seán Treacy, Dan Breen, Seán Hogan, Séumas Robinson, Tadhg Crowe, Mick McCormack, Paddy O'Dwyer, Michael Ryan who were at the final site of the ambush that led to the death of two Royal Irish Constabulary members and the seizing of a cart of gelignite.

Irish War of Independence Guerrilla war (1919-1921) between the IRA and British forces, ended by the Anglo-Irish Treaty

The Irish War of Independence or Anglo-Irish War was a guerrilla war fought in Ireland from 1919 to 1921 between the Irish Republican Army and British forces: the British Army, along with the quasi-military Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC) and its paramilitary forces the Auxiliaries and Ulster Special Constabulary (USC). It was an escalation of the Irish revolutionary period into warfare.

Séumas Robinson (Irish republican) Irish politician

Séumas Robinson was an Irish republican and politician.

Seán Treacy IRA Member

Seán Treacy was one of the leaders of the Third Tipperary Brigade of the Irish Republican Army during the Irish War of Independence. It was his actions that initiated the conflict in 1919. He was killed in October 1920, on Talbot Street in Dublin, in a shootout with British troops and spies during an aborted British Secret Service surveillance operation.

Notable people

Michael ODwyer British colonial administrator

Sir Michael Francis O'Dwyer was Lieutenant Governor of the Punjab in India from 1912 until 1919. O'Dwyer endorsed Colonel Reginald Dyer's action regarding the Amritsar massacre and termed it a "correct action". In 1940, aged 75, he was assassinated by Udham Singh.

3rd Tipperary Brigade

The 3rd Tipperary Brigade was one of the most active of approximately 80 such units that constituted the Irish Republican Army during the Irish War of Independence. The Brigade was based in southern Tipperary and conducted its activities mainly in mid-Munster.

Related Research Articles

Events from the year 1919 in Ireland.

Tipperary (town) Town in Munster, Ireland

Tipperary is a town and a civil parish in County Tipperary, Ireland. Its population was 4,979 at the 2016 census. It is also an ecclesiastical parish in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Cashel and Emly, and is in the historical barony of Clanwilliam. The town gave its name to County Tipperary.

Dan Breen Irish politician

Daniel "Dan" Breen was a volunteer in the Irish Republican Army during the Irish War of Independence and the Irish Civil War. In later years he was a Fianna Fáil politician.

The Squad, originally nicknamed the Twelve Apostles, was an Irish Republican Army (IRA) unit founded by Michael Collins to counter British intelligence efforts during the Irish War of Independence, mainly by means of assassination.

Cappawhite GAA is a Gaelic Athletic Association club is located in the village of Cappawhite, County Tipperary, bordering on County Limerick in Ireland. It competes in the West Division Gaelic football and hurling competitions of Tipperary GAA. The club's tradition is in hurling, having won major honours through the decades. However, the club achieved major football success in the 1970s when the West Division Senior Football championship was also won.

Martin Savage Irish Republican Army member

Martin Savage was an Officer in the Dublin Brigade of the Irish Republican Army, from Ballisodare, County Sligo. On 19 December 1919 he was killed in a gun battle during an ambush at Ashtown, near the border of County Meath and County Dublin, during the early stages of the Irish War of Independence.

Seán Hogan Irish Republican Army officer

Seán Hogan was one of the leaders of the 3rd Tipperary Brigade of the Irish Republican Army during the War of Independence.

Edmond Foley IRA Member

Edmond Foley, sometimes known as Edmund or Edward, was a member of the Irish Republican Army (IRA) who was hanged in Mountjoy Prison on 7 June 1921. Together with nine other men executed by hanging during the War of Independence, he was one of The Forgotten Ten.

Dinny Lacey Irish republican

Denis "Dinny" Lacey was an Irish Republican Army officer during the Irish War of Independence and anti-Treaty IRA officer during the Irish Civil War. Lacey was born in 1889 in a village called Attybrick, near Annacarty, County Tipperary. His parents were Thomas Lacey and Ellen Hayes. He worked as a clerk and manager of a coal merchant in Tipperary Town, prior to the Irish War of Independence.

Knocklong Village in Munster, Ireland

Knocklong is a small village situated in County Limerick, Ireland, located on the main Limerick to Mitchelstown to Cork road. The 2011 census statistics for Knocklong counts 122 males, 143 females, 128 households and 21 vacant households.

Sean Finn was a commander of multiple units in the IRA's Irish War of Independence in the early 20th century. He led many attacks on the ruthless Black and Tans and the heavily-armed RIC patrols, with his brigade usually armed only with shotguns.

Seán Treacy's Hurling Club is a Gaelic Athletic Association club located in London, England. The club was founded in 1958 and is exclusively concerned with the game of hurling.

Soloheadbeg ambush

The Soloheadbeg ambush took place on 21 January 1919, when members of the Irish Volunteers ambushed Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC) officers who were escorting a consignment of gelignite explosives at Soloheadbeg, County Tipperary. Two RIC officers were killed and their weapons and the explosives were seized. The volunteers acted on their own initiative and had not sought authorisation for their action. As it happened on the same day that the revolutionary Irish parliament first met and declared Ireland's independence, it is often seen as the first engagement of the Irish War of Independence.

On 13 May 1919, a captured Irish Republican Army (IRA) member, Seán Hogan, was rescued from a train by his comrades while being guarded by four armed Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC) officers. Two of the RIC officers were killed and several IRA volunteers were wounded. The rescue took place on Hogan's 18th birthday, while the Cork-bound train stopped at Knocklong station in County Limerick. It was undertaken by three of Hogan's comrades from the 3rd Tipperary Brigade of the IRA and five members of the Galtee Battalion of the East Limerick Brigade. Hogan was one of the most wanted men in Ireland at the time of his rescue, due to his role in the Soloheadbeg ambush and would almost certainly have been executed.