Timoleague Friary was founded in the late 13th or early 14th century. The Franciscian friars who lived here devoted themselves to the strict rules of poverty and simplicity as laid down by St. Francis, so the architectural details of the building are quite plain. The earliest church was much smaller than the present one but was extended when the tower was built around 1500 by the Franciscian Bishop of Ross, Edmond de Courcy. On the west end of the cloister was the kitchen and at the north-east corner a dining room with 5 windows overlooking the sea. After the reformation, some of the Friars returned to Timoleague and lived there on and off until 1642 when the friary and town were burnt down by English soldiers by Lord Forbes.