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The North-eastern division of Co. Cork, close to the adjoining counties of Limerick and Tipperary, is called the barony of Condons. This was named after the family of Condon which was in possession of much of that area, their principal stronghold being the Castle of Cloghleagh near Kilworth, which however actually lies outside the boundary of the said barony. They may indeed be described as a sept rather than as a family. They are not, it is true, of native Gaelic stock, having come to Ireland at the time of the Anglo-Norman invasion, but they always counted themselves as a sept, and as late as 1605, we find David Condon, in a letter to the Secretary of State, describing himself as "Chief of his Sept". Nevertheless, though often fighting side by side with the McCarthys and other native septs, they did not become thoroughly gaelicized like many of the Norman families, but were proud of their English descent, and this claim stood them in good stead at least up to the beginning of the seventeenth century. In 1641, however, they were as Irish as any. No less than 21 Condons were attainted at the time and several more suffered for their adhesion to James II in 1690. it was during this period that the Gaelic poet David Condon lived. Historical and religious causes and intermarriage with Gaelic Irish families have, of course, now made the Condons completely Irish. One of them was a well-known Fenian, Edward O'Meagher Condon (1835-1915), an emigrant who had become an American citizen - a fact which saved him from the gallows, as he was condemned to death in 1867 for his part in the Manchester raid. He was from Co. Cork. That county and south Tipperary are, as might be expected, the homeland of the great majority of Condons to-day.
There was formerly an Ulster family called O Condubhain whose name was anglicized Condon, but this is now very rare if not extinct.