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  1. Plural of clone

Extensive Definition

This page refers to the Irish town. For other uses, see Clones (disambiguation), or Clone
Clones (Irish: Cluain Eois) – – is a small town in western County Monaghan, in the border area of the Republic of Ireland. The area is part of the Border, Midlands and Western region, earmarked for economic development by the Irish government due to its currently below average economic situation. The town was particularly badly hit economically by the partition of Ireland in 1921 because of its location on the border with County Fermanagh in Northern Ireland which deprived it of access to a large part of its economic hinterland, now situated on the other side of the border. The town had a population of 2,889 (including the rural area) at the 2006 census. The town's name in Irish, Cluain Eois, means 'Eos's meadow'.


Clones was the site of a monastic settlement, originally founded by Tighearnach in the 6th century, until the dissolution of the monasteries by Henry VIII. The ruins of a 12th century abbey building can still be found in the town, along with a sarcophagus reputed to have been built to house the remains of Saint Tighearnach, and a 9th century round tower and high cross.
In February 1922, just after the partition of Ireland, Clones was the scene of a confrontation between the Ulster Special Constabulary and the Irish Republican Army. The Special Constabulary were a temporary, armed police force raised in Northern Ireland to put down IRA guerrillas there. Since the end of the Irish War of Independence in July 1921, the IRA were acting as the de facto army of the Provisional Government of the Irish Free State. A unit of Special Constabulary was travelling by train to Belfast, but was stopped by an IRA unit at Clones, in Southern Ireland, while they were changing trains. The IRA men demanded that they surrender and a gun battle broke out. An IRA officer was killed, as were four Special Constables. Nine other USC men were injured and the rest surrendered. The incident, known as the 'Clones Affray' at the time, threatened to cause the collapse of the Anglo-Irish Treaty and prompted the British government to suspend the withdrawal of British troops from the Free State.


The town was a major Great Northern Railway (Ireland) Railway junction during the 19th and early 20th centuries, where routes from Enniskillen, Armagh, Cavan, and Dundalk converged. This formed the focal point of the railway network in what is now the border area between the Republic and Northern Ireland. The railways were finally closed after unilateral closure of the Northern Ireland route sections by the Northern Authorities and the Ulster Transport Authority (see History of rail transport in Ireland). Clones railway station was opened on 26 June 1858, closed for passenger traffic on 14 October 1957, and finally closed altogether on 1 January 1960.



Clones is now mainly known in Ireland as being the location of the GAA stadium, St. Tiernach's Park. This stadium is regularly used for inter-county matches during the Ulster provincial championship in Gaelic football, and traditionally hosts the final. The summer football season is therefore a major source of revenue for businesses in the town.
clones in German: Clones
clones in French: Clones
clones in Irish: Cluain Eois
clones in Dutch: Clones
clones in Scots: Clones
clones in Slovak: Clones
clones in Swedish: Clones
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