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The untimely death of Richard of Striguil Conse- 
was a heavy blow to the prospects of the Anglo- o"stron^ 
Norman colony, which, in Leinster at least, was ^^^^ 
beginning to settle down to peaceful progress 
and orderly rule. It left the king without a 
representative in Ireland, and the great fief of 
Leinster without a lord. The Countess Eva, 
daughter of King Dermot, had borne only one 
child to the earl, a daughter named Isabel, and 
she, an infant of not more than five years of age, 
was heiress to the earl's vast fief. The valuable 
feudal incidents of the wardship and marriage 
of this heiress now accrued to the king as 
dominus, and it was important for him at once 
to secure his rights. The commissioners sent to 
recall Raymond, seeing that it would be mad- 
ness at this moment to execute their original 
commission, and that in the changed circum- 
stances it was necessary to apply to the king 
for new instructions, left Raymond as pro- 
curator in Ireland, while they hastened to the 


king to acquaint him with the facts and learn 
his pleasure.^ 

Henry, however, had already conceived a 
distrust of Raymond, and indeed it is suffi- 
ciently obvious that Raymond was not fitted 
either to control the colony or to secure the 
interests of the Crown in Leinster. Accordingly 
William Henry appointed his dapifer, William Fitz 
Audeiin Audelin, whom he had previously on two 
Chief occasions employed in Ireland, as procurator 
ine. instead of Raymond, and sent him immediately 
to Ireland with orders to seize into the king's 
hand all the earl's castles {munitiones) in 

Along with William Fitz Audelin came John 
de Courcy, Robert Fitz Stephen, and Miles de 
Cogan, each with ten men-at-arms. The two 
last, and probably all three, had fought for 
King Henry both in England and in France in 
his war with the barons, and might naturally 
expect their reward in Ireland now. John de 
Courcy may have accompanied Henry to Ireland 
in 1171, but this is the first time he came to 
stay in the country where he was soon to become 
famous. All three, according to Gerald de 
Barry, were joined in the commission with 
WilHam Fitz Audelin. Of the latter Gerald 

1 Giraldus, v. 334. 

2 Gesta Hen., vol. i, p. 125. The title ' procurator ' is 
taken from Giraldus. 


gives a very unfavourable portrait : a courtly, 
luxurious man, smooth-spoken, but full of guile, 
a bully and a coward, greedy of gold, and 
a seeker after court favour.^ Acting, as is 
hinted, and as was very probably the case, 
under instructions from Henry, he seems to 
have endeavoured to thwart in every way the 
bolder spirits of the conquest, and in particular 
the Geraldines. Maurice Fit z Gerald, the head 
of the clan, died about the 1st of September 
in this year. Strongbow had given to him 
Wicklow Castle, which had at first been reserved 
by Henry along with the maritime district south 
of Dublin, but was afterwards, as we have seen, 
granted to Strongbow. Now Fitz Audelin took 
the castle out of the hands of Maurice's sons, 
presumably to be held for the king during the 
minority of Strongbow' s heir. Ferns was given 
to them by way of exchange, and they im- 
mediately set about building a castle there ; 
but, according to Gerald, Walter ' Alemannus ', 
or the German, a nephew of Fitz Audelin and 

^ V. 337-8, %vith much more to the same effect. He has 
been strangely identified with WilHam de Burgh, ' the 
conqueror of Connaught,' a man of a very different type. 
William Fitz Aldehn or Audehn, as the name should be 
written (not ' Aldelm '), was son of Aldelin de Aldefeld, and 
held a knight's fee in Yorkshire. His wife was Juliana, 
daughter of Robert Doisnell : see Round's Feudal England, 
p. 518, and the cartae of 1166 printed in Hearne's Liber 
Niger Scaccarii. 



Gustos of Wexford (now also in the king's 
hand), bribed by Murtough Mc Murrough, 
Dermot's nephew, caused the castle to be 
destroyed.^ Fitz Audelin is also said to have 
disappointed both Raymond and Fitz Stephen 
by refusing to give them any of the more 
secure lands near Dublin or Wexford, and 
leaving to them only the more remote lands on 
the marches. 
John de One adventurous spirit showed his discontent 
with Fitz Audelin' s policy by organizing and 
carrying out a raid on his own account, which 
would seem to have been the act of a madman 
had it not been successful, and which resulted 
in subjecting a large portion of another pro- 
vince to English domination. This was John de 
Courcy, whose story is like a wild romance, and 
would hardly be believed were it not for many 
solid and enduring facts which testify to its 
essential truth. 

Of his antecedents little is known. He came 
of a family seated at Stoke Courcy in Somerset- 
shire and was related to William de Courcy 
(ob. 1176), dapifer of Henry II and at one time 

1 Gir. Camb. v, 337. Wicklow Castle was afterwards 
restored to the Geraldines, and we find it belonging to the 
Baron of Naas in 1229 : C. D. I., vol. i, no. 1757. It is 
probable that Ferns, the old royal seat of Leinster, was left 
at this time in the possession of Murtough McMurrough, 
who was friendly to the English, and had assisted Raymond 
at the relief of Limerick early in the year. 


Seneschal of Normandy.^ He probably accom- 
panied Henry to Ireland, as the Song of Dermot 
expressly says that Henry, while in Ireland, 
granted to him ' Ulster, if he could conquer it '.^ 
Niall O'Loughlin, King of the Cinel Owen, a 
group of tribes whose king, when strong enough, 
was recognized as high-king of the whole 
northern province, had alone among the prin- 
cipal kings of Ireland held entirely aloof from 
Henry during his visit, and Henry, who was 
himself unwilling to attempt a winter cam- 
paign in Ulster, may have half -jestingly granted 
a licence to John de Courcy to take the province 
if he could. As we have seen, the licence 
originally granted to Richard of Striguil a 
couple of years earlier is said to have been of 
a similar half -jesting nature. 

John de Courcy is described as a tall fair man His de- 
with big bones and muscular frame, of immense 
strength and remarkable daring. A born warrior, 
in action ever in the front, ever taking upon 

1 Along with his brother Jordan de Curci, John witnessed 
a grant by William de Curci, steward of the king, for the 
souls of his grandfather Wilham de Curci and his father 
William, to the monks of St. Andrew of Stoke. Hist. MSS. 
Com., 9th Rep., Part 1, p. 353 b. 

2 A un Johan Uluestere, 

Si a force la peust conquere, 
De Curci out a nun Johan 
Ki pus i suffri meint [a]han. 

11. 2733-6. 


himself the brunt of the danger. So keen 
a lighter was he that even when in command he 
would forget the calmness that befits a general 
and become an impetuous soldier. In private 
life he was modest, sober-minded, and pious, and 
gave to God the glory of all his victories.^ 

Such a mettlesome warrior could not but 

grow restive under the timid and politic rule 

Advances of Fitz Audelin. Accordingly, in spite of Fitz 

Ulster, Audelin, he took the bit in his teeth. He 

' ■ gathered round him some of the garrison of 

Dublin who were discontented like himself, and 

with a little band of twenty-two men-at-arms 

and about three hundred others, supplemented 

perhaps by some of the Irish themselves,^ boldly 

advanced into Ulster, where English arms had 

not yet attempted to penetrate. He marched 

rapidly through Meath and Uriel, and on the 

fourth day — about the 1st of February — he 

And cap- took by Surprise the city of Down. This was 

Down- an ancient ecclesiastical site associated with 

pa ric . g^^ Patrick, and here the saint was believed to 

have been buried. It was also the chief seat of 

the kings of Uladh, or Ulidia, i. e. that part of the 

modern province of Ulster lying to the east of 

^ Gir. Camb. v. 344. John de Courcy was one of those 
with whom Gerald must have come into contact in 1185^6. 

2 ' Associatis sibi Hyberniensibus illis qui parti eorum 
favebant ' : Gesta Hen., vol. i, p. 137. According to the 
Book of Howth (p. 81) John had 700 men at the battle 
of Down. 


the Bann and the Ne\vry river. The king, who 
was a member of the family called Mac Donlevy,^ 
fled, but only to collect his host. 

It happened that Cardinal Vivian was in the 
city of Down at this time on a mission from 
the Pope, and he endeavoured to make peace 
between de Courcy and the king, on the terms 
that the latter should pay tribute to the English 
and the former retire from the territory, but 
his good offices were fruitless.^ In eight days 

^ He is called ' Dunlevus ' by Gerald, and the name 
appears as ' Macdonleue ' (representing Mac Duinnsleibhe) 
in the Song. The members of this family were always 
killing one another, and which of them was acknowledged 
king at this moment is hard to determine. See O'Donovan's 
notes to Four Masters, vol. iii, pp. 30 and 39, which, how- 
ever, do not seem to clear up the point. At any rate, Rory 
Mac Donlevy seems to have been in command both in 1177 
(Ann. Inisfallen, Dublin MS. ; Gesta Hen., vol. i, p. 137, 
where he is called Rodericus rex Ulvestere) and in 1178 
(Ann. Inisfallen, Ann. Tigemach). For the ambiguity in 
the name Uladh or Ulster see O'Donovan's note to Four 
Masters, 1172, p. 7. In the twelfth century the name was 
(properly speaking) confined to the district represented 
by the modern counties of Down and Antrim. 

2 Giraldus, v. 340. William of Newburgh, vol i, p. 238, 
says that Vivian advised the Irish to fight for their country. 
According to the Gesta Henrici (vol. i, p. 137) Vivian met 
de Courcy's army while he was journeying along the coast 
on his way to Dublin. He may have returned to Down 
with it. He had come to Down from the Isle of Man, where 
' Godredum regem legitime desponsari fecit cum uxore sua 
nomine Phingola (Finnghuala) filia Mac Loclen filii Mur- 
kartec regis Hybemiae, matre scilicet Olavi qui tunc triennis 


The Mac Donlevy returned with a huge army, said 

Drnvn."^ to number 10,000 men, to recapture the city. 
Meantime de Courcy had constructed a weak 
fort in a corner of the city,^ but he preferred 
to meet the enemy in the open, on ground 
chosen by himself. Including his Irish auxili- 
aries he had perhaps 700 men.^ A more than 
Homeric battle ensued, in which John de Courcy, 
his supposed brother-in-law Almaric de St. Law- 
rence, and Roger le Poer did wonders. We shall 
not attempt to describe the battle, for which 
indeed trvistworthy details are wanting.^ The 

erat' : Chron. Manniae, 1176. This is a late example of an 
Irish lady in high position entering into a marriage not 
recognized by the Church. Her grandfather was Murtough 
O'Loughlin, King of Ireland (with opposition), si. 1166, and 
her father was, I suppose, Melaghlin O'Loughlin, who in this 
very year (1177) killed Aedh O'Neill, a former king of the 
Cinel Owen. 

1 ' Exile municipium quod in urbis angulo tenuiter 
erexerat ' : Gir. Camb. v. 340. 

2 This is the number given in the Book of Howth. 

^ Gir. Camb. v. 340-2. The fullest account, which reads 
like the tale of an Irish shanach}', is contained in the Book 
of Howth, pp. 81-4, in a passage not taken from Giraldus, 
but probably ' from a translation by Primate Dowdall made 
in 1551 out of a Latin book found with O'Neill in Armagh ^ 
(see the colophon, p. 117). This Latin book seems to have 
contained the gestes of John de Courcy. Mr. Brewer's account 
of the Book of Howth is very faulty ; see Round, Commune 
of London, pp. 146-9. Roger de Hoveden (ii. 120) says : 
' Johannes de Curci, amissaexercitus sui parte magna, victoria 
potitus est,' and adds that the bishop of Down was taken 
prisoner but was released at the entreaty of Cardinal Vivian. 


Northerners fought with their usual courage, 
but in the end were utterly defeated. The 
fight seems to have taken place in the low lands 
to the north of the city, which were intersected 
by the swamps of the river Quoile. Probably 
the narrow strips of firm land gave little ad- 
vantage to numbers, and superior arms and 
discipline and, above all, the deadly arrows, 
turned the scale. 

John de Courcy had now a breathing-space 
in which to fortify himself in his new possession. 

There can be little doubt that now was the His mote- 
time when the great mote, situated about a 

quarter of a mile to the north of the cathedral 
town, was erected, and that it was the caislen or 
castrum which he is said to have built at this 
time.^ From this centre John de Courcy gradu- 
ally extended his sway over Uladh, represented 
now by the counties of Down and Antrim, and 
over much of Uriel as well. But he was not 
always successful. Giraldus enumerates five 

•^ . His live 

battles, in three of which he was victorious and battles. 

1 This mote has in comparatively recent times been 
supposed to be Rath Celtair or the Fort of Celtar, a hero 
mentioned in early bardic story. But this has been dis- 
proved, and the real situation of Rath Celtair, which was 
known in John de Courcy's time, shown to have been on 
the hill where the cathedral now stands (see Eng. Hist. 
Review, 1907, p. 440, and the Journ. R. S. A. 1. 1907, 
p. 137). In a map dated 1729 the mote is called ' Enghsh 
Mount '. 


in the other two narrowly escaped with his life. 
He is, I think, substantially borne out by the 
Irish annals. The second battle was fought on 
the 24th of June, also at Down. It is described 
at some length in the Dublin copy of the Annals 
of Inisfallen. This time Rory Mac Donlevy, 
at the head of the Ulidians, was supported by 
Melaghlin O'Neill, lord of the Cinel Owen, and 
accompanied by the Archbishop of Armagh and 
others of the clergy, who bore numerous relics 
with them to secure the victory. The Cinel 
Owen and the Ulidians were defeated with the 
loss of 500 men. ' The Archbishop of Armagh, 
the Bishop of Down, and all the clergy were 
taken prisoners ; and the English got posses- 
sion of the croziers of St. Comgall and St. 
Dachiarog, the Canoin Phatruic [i. e. the Book 
of Armagh], besides a bell called Ceolan an 
Tighearna. They afterwards, however, set the 
bishops at liberty and restored the Canoin 
Phatruic and the bell, but they killed all the 
inferior clergy and kept the other noble relics,' 
which are stated to have remained in the hands 
of the English. ^ The third engagement was 

^ This passage from the Annals of Inisfallen is quoted 
in O'Donovan's note to Four Masters, vol. iii, p. 31. The 
older annals; in recording the names of the chieftains of 
the Cinel Owen who were killed, virtuall}^ corroborate this 
account. It is curious to note that the possession of the 
' noble relics ' seems to have been as much prized, presum- 
ably for battle-luck, by the victors as by the vanquished. 


at Fir-Li, where De Courcy was raiding some 
cattle, when he was overpowered in a narrow 
pass and barely escaped with eleven of his 
knights to his castrum at Down. Fir -Li was a 
tribal district on the Bann in the north of 
Antrim, and this defeat at the hands of Cumee 
O'Flynn, lord of this district, is recorded in the 
Irish annals under the year 1178. The fourth 
battle was in Uriel, where de Courcy lost many 
of his men ; and the fifth apud pontem Ivori 
(Newry) on his return from England, from 
which, however, he escaped to his own district 

^ It is harder to identify these last two battles with the 
entries in the Annals, but the battle at Uriel is probably that 
mentioned in the Annals of Ulster in 1178, when John with 
his knights went pillaging from Dun (Downpatriek) to the 
Plain of Conaille (i.e. the low lands in Louth, a part of 
Uriel), and was attacked and defeated byMurroughO'Carroll, 
King of Uriel, and Mac Donlevy, King of Uladh, at Glen- 
righ (see, too, Four Masters and Ann. Inisf alien, MS. 
T. C. D.) ; and the fight at Newry may be that recorded 
in the Annals of Inisfallen (Dublin MS.) under the year 1180, 
where it is stated that John de Courcy plundered Machaire 
Conaille and Cuailgne and carried off 100 cows, but was 
pursued and overtaken by Murrough O'Carroll and others 
and defeated ; and John de Courcy fled to Skreen Columb- 
kille to the castle he had himself made there. This would 
be Castleskreen in Lecale, Avhere the original mote may still 
be seen. O'Donovan, indeed, identifies the battle apud 
pontem Ivori with the first raid on Machaire Conaille and 
the defeat at Glenrigh, because Glenrigh was the old name 
for the vale of the Newry river. But this river was also 
the boundary of Uriel. Moreover, O'Donovan makes no 



legend of 

of his 


A legend of the St. Lawrence family, as old 
as the Book of Howth,^ locates pons Ivori at 
Howth, the ancient seat of the family, and here 
on the Ordnance Survey Map may be seen the 
name ' Evora Bridge '. But the legend will 
not stand examination, and we may suspect 
that Evora Bridge owes its name to the legend, 
and lends it no support. The Irish name for 
Newry was lubhar cinn tragha, ' yew-tree of 
the head of the strand.' By shortening it to 
lubhar, prefixing the article {an), and adding 
a termination, the name Newry was evolved. 
Gerald's form represents the Irish sound without 
the article. 

One would like to be able to trace more clearly 
the steps by which this remarkable man secured 
his position in Ulidia and dominated the whole 
country; but Giraldus, who alone throws any 
light on the subject, expressly tells us that 
he handles the matter briefly and by way of 

attempt to identify the admitted defeat apud Uriel, or to 
trace in the pages of Giraldus the battle described in the 
Annals of Inisfallen, 1180. The equations suggested above 
seem substantially to reconcile the authorities. The last 
two battles, in fact, took place in very nearly the same place, 
but that apud Uriel was after a raid into Uriel and was 
admittedly a bad defeat, while that apud pontem Ivori 
might be characterized differently according to the sym- 
pathies of the writers. 

1 Book of Howth (Car. Cal.), p. 90. The district about 
Howth and ^or a considerable distance to the north must 
have been subdued many years before this battle. 


episode, leaving to de Courcy's own writers to 
tell of his great exploits.^ We may, however, 
indicate some of the conditions which probably 
aided him in accomplishing his purpose. In 
the first place, we have only to glance at the Internal 
Irish annals for the period to see that the 
northern tribes, so far from being ready to 
combine steadily against the invaders, were 
incessantly fighting among themselves or with 
their neighbours in Connaught and in Ulidia. 
Thus the entries for the years 1177-80 are 
mainly concerned with the internal disputes 
of the subordinate tribes of Tir-owen. In 1181 
we find the Cinel Connell inflicting a great 
defeat on Connaught, in which ' were killed 
sixteen sons of kings of Connaught and stark 
slaughter of Connaught besides '. Still more 
to the point, in the same year the Cinel Owen, 
under their king, Donnell O'Loughlin, ' gained 
a battle over the Ulidians and over Ui Tuirtri 
and over Fir-Li around Rory Mac Donlevy and 
Cumee O'Flynn,' who were hitherto John de 
Courcy's chief opponents ; while again in the 

1 It is not improbable that Giraldus here actually alludes 
to some such work as was probably the original of those 
passages in the Book of Howth which tell of the gestes of 
John de Courcy, but in reading these stories as they have 
come down to us we note the entire absence of the acute 
observation, critical insight, and general moderation of 
statement for which Giraldus, by comparison with other 
writers of the time, is remarkable. 

1226 u B 


same year other tribes of the Cinel Owen ' took 
away many thousands of cows ' from the same 
territories.^ We may reasonably suspect that 
these chieftains, after this treatment by their 
neighbours, were ready to invoke the assistance 
of de Courcy even at the price of submitting 
to his rule. Indeed the first entry in the next 
year (1182) goes far to prove the truth of this 
supposition. It tells of a new hosting of Donnell 
O'Loughlin to Dunbo in Dalriada ^ (a general 
name including the same districts in the north 
of Antrim), and of a battle there in which he was 
met and defeated by the Foreigners (i. e. John 
de Courcy's men). Furthermore, there is no 
record of any subsequent fighting between the 
Irish of Ulidia and John de Courcy, while on 
two occasions Rory Mac Donlevy was joined 
by the English on expeditions against Tir-owen 
and to Armagh. We may fairly conclude that 
there was no considerable displacement of the 
Irish population, but that after the first severe 
fighting the people settled down peaceably 
under their new rulers. Secondly, John de 

^ Ann. Ulster, Ann. Loch Ce, Four Masters. 

2 Dunbo is now the name of a townland and parish on 
the west side of the Bann, and according to 0' Donovan 
Dalriada was bounded by that river. The point is im- 
material for present purposes, as it is pretty plain that 
Donnell O'Loughlin was proceeding against Dalriada, and 
at one time, at any rate, the Fir-Li extended on both sides 
of the Bann. See Book of Rights, p. 123, note m. 


Courcy strengthened his position by marrying His 
Affreca, daughter of Gottred, King of Man.^ mamage. 
The Isle of Man was long connected with 
Ulidia, and the Northmen still lingered in some 
of the ports on the mainland. When in 1204 
John de Courcy was driven out of Uladh, 
Reginald, King of Man, assisted him, because 
he was his brother-in-law.^ He may have 
received assistance from the Manxmen before. 
At any rate, by his alliance with the King of 
Man, de Courcy did much to keep open com- 
munication by sea with England and with 
Dublin, and to secure his position generally. 

Thirdly, he was a great builder of mote- His mote- 
castles,^ and the motes dotted all over the 
counties of Down and Antrim indicate, more 
surely than any records which have survived, 
the precise centres of the manors created by 
him. Some few, indeed, we can positively 
connect with the castles mentioned in our 
scanty records, such as those at Downpatrick 
and Castleskreen (already mentioned), Mount 
Sandall near Coleraine, and one in Coleraine 
itself. Others can be shown with more or less 
probability to date from his time. Such are 

1 According to the Annals of Inisf alien (MS. T. C. D.) 
this marriage took place in 1180. 

2 Chron. Manniae (Manx Soc, vol. xxii), a. 1204, 1205. 

^ ' Ultoniam undique locis idoneis incastellavit ' : Gir. 
Camb. V. 345. 



the so-called Crown Rath near Newry, the motes 
at Antrim, Donaghadee, Holy wood, and Dromore, 
and the castle sites of Castlereagh, Clough, and 
others. The original castles at Carrickfergus, 
Carlingford, and Dundrum were on rock sites, 
and were probably built of stone from the first. 
Support- Fourthly, John de Courcy found a strong 
Church, supporter in the Church, of which he was a muni- 
ficent benefactor. He introduced Benedictine 
monks from the abbey of St. Werburgh in 
Chester into the priory of St. Patrick,^ as he 
renamed the church of the Holy Trinity at 
Downpatrick. He confirmed the see of Down 
in its ancient possessions, and added largely 
thereto.^ He also introduced Benedictine monks, 
from the priory of St. Andrew endowed by his 
ancestors at Stoke Courcy, into his new founda- 
tion, the priory of St. Andrew in the Ards, 
County Down.^ He granted to the monks of 

1 Rot. Pat., 41 Ed. Ill, pt. 2, m. 11, a,n inspeximusoi seven 
charters. The monks replaced the secular canons, but the 
church of Dowti was to be free from all subjection to the 
church of Chester. Malachi III, Bishop of Down, con- 
firmed the grant, he remaining ' guardian and abbot of the 
black monks as in the church of Winchester or Coventry '. 
See Dugdale, Mon. Angl. (ed. 1830), vi, 1124. 

2 John de Courcy's gifts to the see of Down were con- 
firmed by Hugh de Lacy, Earl of Ulster, and are enumerated 
in an inspeximus, Rot. Pat., 16 Ed. Ill, pt. 2, m. 17. See 
Reeves, EccL Ant., p. 164. 

^ Dugdale, vi, 1123. This gift was confirmed by Pope 
Innocent III, Papal Letters, vol. i, p. 17. 


St. Bega of Coupland, also Benedictines, the 
church of the island of Neddrum, now Mahee 
island, and two-thirds of the island itself, the 
remaining third being reserved to the see of 
Down.^ He brought Cistercians from the abbey 
of Furness in Lancashire to Inishcourcy, now 
called Inch Abbey, near Downpatrick,^ to atone, 
it is said, for having destroyed a Benedic- 
tine monastery in the neighbourhood; and he 
established Cruciferi or Crutched Friars in the 
priory of St. John the Baptist at Downpatrick.^ 
He also endowed the house of St. Mary of 
Carrickfergus to the use of canons of the Pre- 
monstratensian order,* while his wife, Affreca, 

1 Nine documents concerning Neddrum are summarized 
in Reeves, Eccl. Ant., pp. 190-4, from a thirteenth-century 
roll, Cotton MSS., Brit. Mus. See also Dugdale, vi, 1127. 
Neddrum or Nendrum represents the Irish n-Oendruim, 
where there was formerly a Celtic monastery, the last 
abbot of which was ' burned in his own house ' : Four 
Masters, 974. The first abbot was Mochaoi (ob. 496, 
Four Masters), from whom the island was known as Inis 
Mochaoi or Mahee island. John de Courcy's foundation 
is ascribed by Bishop Reeves to the year 1178. 

2 Inishcourcy is a peninsula opposite to Downpatrick 
running into Strangford Lough. Its Irish name was Inis 
Cumhscraidh. The foundation of the abbey is ascribed 
to the year 1187 : Ann. St. Mary's Abbey, Chart., vol. ii, 
p. 288. 

^ Rot. Pat., 10 Ed. Ill, p. 2, m. 35, an inspeximits of 
six charters. 

* Royal Letters, no. 799; see Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, 
no. 1227. 


in 1193 founded the Cistercian monastery De 
Jugo Dei, the ruins of which are now known 
as the Grey Abbey, in Lower Ards.^ He was 
also a benefactor of St. Thomas's Abbey ' and 
of Christ Church, Dublin.^ 
Not inter- Fifthly, and perhaps this was the real secret 
^^^^^ of his success, he was let alone. Until the period 


preceding his final expulsion in 1205 he was not 
interfered with either by king, justiciar, or 
brother baron. Though there is no evidence 
that he was ever created Earl of Ulster, he was 
de facto what the monk Jocelin called him, 
Princeps Ulidiae.* He practically exercised jura 
regalia even more completely than the great 
palatine lords of Leinster and Meath ; he had 
a virtually unlimited jurisdiction, appointed 
his own feudal officers, created barons, and 
parcelled out the greater part of the territory 
among them. Unfortunately we have no au- 
thentic list of his barons,^ and no account of 

1 Chron. Manniae, 1204 ; Ann. Laud MS., Chart. St. 
Mary's, Dublin, vol. ii, p. 306. 

2 Reg. St. Thomas's, Dublin, p. 221. 

3 Christ Church Deeds, no. 10 ; cf. Liber Niger Ch. Ch., 
no. 9. This deed should be dated 1182-6. Amauri de 
Obda, one of the witnesses, is probably Almaric de St. 
Lawrence of Howth, brother-in-law to John de Courcy. 

4 Dedication to his Life of St. Patrick. 

5 Sir John Davies in the Case of the County Palatine 
of Wexford mentions two of these barons, ' the baron 
Misset (a mistake for Bisset) and the baron Savage,' but 
there were many more. Thus King John addressed his 


his sub-infeudation, so that its extent is largely 
a matter of inference. 

He had officers of his household just like any 
king or prince, and from his charters, several 
of which are known to us, we can tell some of 
their names. Thus it appears, from his charter 
granting jurisdiction to the Prior of Down, 
that Richard Fitz Robert was his seneschal, 
Roger de Courcy of Chester was his constable, 
and Adam his chamberlain.^ Other witnesses to 
the same charter are William Savage, William 
Hach' [Hacket], and William Saracen. In the 
list of hostages required from John de Courcy 
in 1204^ the sons of these six individuals are 
named with three others, and we may be pretty 
sure that the fathers were among John de 
Courcy's most trusted vassals. 

mandate ordering the arrest of John de Courcy as follows : 
' Rex omnibus Baronibus de Ultoniae,' &c. : Pat. Roll, 6 

1 See inspeximus of this charter in Dugdale from Pat. 
Roll, 41 Ed. Ill, p. 2, m. 11, These three officers witness 
other charters of John de Courcy. The other witnesses to 
this charter were WilMam and Henry Copland, WiUiam de 
Curci, PhiUp de Hasting, Simon Passelew, Richard de Du[n]- 
donenald (i.e. Dundouenald or Dundonald, where there was 
an early castle now marked by a mote), and Reinard his 
brother, Walter de Loga[n]. 

Another charter (Reg. St. Thomas's, p. 222) was witnessed 
by Henry Purcell, constable, Roger Poer, marshal, and 
Adam, chamberlain. 

2 Rot. Pat., 6 John, p. 55 b. 



To return to the year 1177. After the battle Synod 


of Down, Cardinal Vivian proceeded to Dublin, Cardinal 
where he convened a synod of the bishops and i}^;*"' 
abbots of Ireland. At this synod, according to 
Giraldus, he made a public declaration of the 
king's title to Ireland and of the papal confirma- 
tion thereof, and enjoined both clergy and laity, 
under pain of excommunication, to be true to 
their allegiance. Also, inasmuch as the Irish 
were accustomed to store their provisions in 
churches, he gave permission to the English 
troops, on any expedition, when they could not 
get food elsewhere, to take what they found 
in the churches on paying a just price. ^ This 
custom may seem at first sight curious and the 
licence given improbable ; but there is indepen- 

^ Gir. Camb. v. 345. The Four Masters enigmatically 
state of this synod of the clergy that ' they enacted many 
ordinances not [now] observed '. When Vivian landed in 
England in July 1176 he was compelled to swear that he 
would do nothing against the king : Gesta Hen., vol. i, 
p. 118. The synod at DubUn is incidentally mentioned, 
ibid., p. 161. 


dent evidence of the custom, and the statement 
throws light on the conduct of the Irish of 
Connaught in the face of an Enghsh expedition 
which took place soon afterwards in the same 
year, and which indeed seems to have been the 
immediate occasion for the licence. For this 
expedition we have the independent accounts 
of the Irish annals, which corroborate in a 
Futile ex- remarkable way the account of Giraldus. It 
into Con- appears that Murrough O' Conor, one of the sons 
naught, ^f ^Yie King of Connaught, invited the English 
' to destroy Connaught for evil towards his 
father '. What the exact pretext was we do 
not know. Possibly we have here only the first 
example of those jealousies and dissensions 
among the members of the 0' Conor family 
which broke out again and again during the next 
century and gave the English full opportunity 
to interfere and dismember the province. But 
as not only Fitz Audelin, but also Cardinal 
Vivian, seem to have countenanced the expedi- 
tion, we must suppose that some plausible case 
was made out for an interference in the affairs 
of Connaught, which certainly appears to have 
been a violation of the recent treaty between 
Henry and Rory. 

With or without plausible grounds, however. 
Miles de Cogan, who was constable of the 
garrison of Dublin and custos of the city, with 
a band of 540 men crossed the Shannon and. 


guided by Murrough 0' Conor, advanced as far 
as Roscommon and Tuam. The men of Con- 
naught, not daring to oppose the invaders in the 
field, thwarted this expedition by the double- 
edged device of creating desolation before it 
throughout a large part of the province. They 
' burned Tuam and the churches of the country 
besides, for evil towards the Foreigners '.^ 
Giraldus explains this entry by his more ample 
statement. ' The Connaught men,' he says, 
' with their own hands set fire to their towns 
and villages in every direction, and whatever 
provisions they could not conceal in under- 
ground chambers they burned together with the 
churches ; and in order to bring scandal on 
our people and draw down upon their foes 
the vengeance of Heaven, they took down the 
crucifixes and images of the saints and strewed 
them on the plains before us.' ^ It seems, 

1 Ann. Ulster, Ann. Loch Ce, 1177. The Annals of 
Tigernach and the Dublin Annals of Innisfallen give 
a detailed account of the places through which the English 
passed, and of how they escaped defeat at the Tochar 
mona Coinneadha (a causeway through a bog in the parish 
of Templetogher, County Galway) owing to the guidance of 
Murrough O'Conor. 

2 Gir. Camb. v. 346. The statement that they bumed 
all provisions ' quae hypogeis subterraneis abscondere non 
poterant ', is interesting as apparently indicating that what 
antiquaries call ' rath-caves ' or dry-stone chambers and 
passages to be found underneath many of the raths or ring- 
forts of the country, were at this time in use. It has been 


indeed, that it was the custom of the Irish, 
not only in Connaught but elsewhere, to store 
their corn in churches in the winter, and this 
custom enables us to understand how the 
burning of their own churches operated as 
* evil to the Foreigners ', and renders intelligible 
the statement of Giraldus as to the licence 
given by Cardinal Vivian. By these tactics 
the Connaught men, with whatever ultimate loss 
and hardship to themselves, gained their im- 
mediate object. The English took no prey and 
indeed barely escaped with their lives, and 
Murrough 0' Conor was blinded by his father in 
revenge for the expedition. 

Henry now recalled William Fitz Audelin, 
Miles de Cogan, and Robert Fitz Stephen. He 
may have been displeased at the Connaught 
expedition, but the grants which he soon after- 
wards made at the Council of Oxford show 
that his displeasure was not deep-seated. Fitz 
Audelin had been in office for only about ten 
months. At some time during this period, in 
the presence of Laurence the archbishop and 

absurdly taken to refer to crypts under the churches. 
Most of these churches were probably of wood, and at any 
rate contained no crypts. 

The practice of drawing down the wrath of Heaven on 
one's foes by strewing crucifixes, &c., on the ground was 
observed by the Anglo-Norman Archbishop Cumin in his 
quarrel with Hamo de Valognes, the justiciar, in 1197 : 
Hoveden, iv, 29. 


Cardinal Vivian, he had founded, on the king's 
behalf, a church dedicated to St. Thomas the Church 
Martyr, just outside the western gate of Dublin, Thomas 
and endowed it with a carucate of land there. ^ Martyr 
This was the origin of the famous abbey of 
St. Thomas, which was served by Augustinian 
canons of the order of St. Victor, and soon 
became endowed by Anglo-Norman settlers 
from all parts of Ireland where they held 

The Register of Deeds of the abbey is one of 
our most important sources of information as 
to the extent and progress of the Anglo-Norman 
settlement up to near the close of the thirteenth 
century. ' Its abbots were appointed subject to 
the approval of the king, they became members 
of his council in Ireland, peers of his parliament 
there, and administered justice in the court of 
the abbey.' The Liberty of Thomas-court sur- 
vived the dissolution, and became the Liberty 
of the Brabazons, earls of Meath, and the last 
court-house building still exists to mark the spot 
where the famous abbey stood. ^ 

1 The charter is transcribed by Leland (vol. i, p. 127) 
from an ancient roll in the possession of the Earl of Meath. 
It is witnessed by the bishops of Meath, Kildare, and 
Waterford, and by some of the principal barons of Leinster, 
and some of the citizens of Dublin. It was confirmed by 
Henry, probably at the Council of Oxford in the same year. 
See too, Chartae Priv. et Immun., p. 2. 

2 Joum. R. S. A. I. 1892, p. 41. 


The One other ' remarkable deed ' is ascribed to 

Jesu. William Fitz Audelin at this time. He caused 
a most sacred relic, called the Bachal Isa, or 
' Staff of Jesus ', to be transferred from Armagh 
to Dublin.^ The possessor of this staff at 
Armagh had been regarded as the true successor 
of Patrick, and it was probably brought to 
Dublin with the idea of assisting the cathedral 
church of that city in its claim to supremacy. 
It was used for centuries in Christ Church for 
the taking of solemn oaths, but was burned 
as an object of superstitious veneration at the 

Hugh de Lacy was now appointed ' pro- 
curator general' of Ireland in place of William 
Fitz Audelin. This new appointment appears 
Council to have been made at the Council of Oxford in 
1177, ' May 1177,^ when a number of appointments 
were made in the Irish establishment and some 
new and far-reaching grants were conferred. 

1 Gir. Camb. v. 347. 

2 Four Masters, anno 1537, and O'Donovan's note, p. 1446. 
^ In the Gesta Hen., vol. i, p. 161, it is said that Henry, 

apparently while still at Windsor, ordered Hugh, Earl of 
Chester, to go to Ireland to subdue it for Henry and his son 
John ; but there is no indication anywhere that this Hugh 
ever went to Ireland, and the whole passage reads like 
a confused account of what was done at the Council of 
Oxford, which is told immediately afterwards in a fuller 
and more orderly fashion : ibid., pp. 162-5. The passage 
is omitted by Roger of Howden. 


In the first place, Henry, with the authority 
of the Pope, constituted his son John, then a boy John, 
in the tenth year of his age, ' King of Ireland,' Hibemiae. 
or perhaps we should say Dominus or Lord of 
Ireland,^ that being the title which afterwards 
appears on John's writs. Moreover, the title 
Dominus Hibemiae appropriately expresses the 
feudal and territorial relation which it was 
desired to create, and accordingly Henry caused 
the new donees to whom grants were made at 
this council to do homage and take the oath of 
fealty to John as well as to himself for their 
lands. To these grants we must now turn. 

First of all, he gave to Hugh de Lacy, by a new Grants of 
charter, the whole of Meath for the service, as 
is stated, of one hundred knights. This grant 
must have been confirmatory of the previous 
grant made at Wexford in 1172. The increased 
service — one hundred knights instead of fifty — 
may have been due to the fact that Hugh de 

^ The distinction is an important one, but it is not, as is 
sometimes supposed, that the title of Rex is higher in degree 
than that of Dominus. The titles imphed distinct relations 
and presupposed different ceremonies. The former title 
is national, the latter territorial. Strictly speaking, a person 
could not be Rex without having been elected and crowned, 
and could not be Dominus without having received homage 
and an oath of fealty from his vassal. Indeed from the 
feudal point of view it might be more important to be 
Dominus than Rex alone. Thus WiUiam the Marshal 
refused to fight for his king (John) against his lord (Philip 
Augustus) : Hist. Guill. le Marechal, 11. 13060-256. 


Lacy was now appointed custos of the crown 
lands of Dublin and of the northern part of 
Leinster, now in the king's hand. In later times, 
however, we find that Meath owed only fifty 
services to the Crown ^ (or in money value £100), 
exactly as stated in the Song of Dermot with 
regard to the original grant, and as provided 
in King John's confirmatory grant to Walter 
de Lacy in 1208. In the next place, Henry 
granted to Robert Fitz Stephen and Miles de 

Cork. Cogan the kingdom of Cork from Cape St. 
Brendan (Brandon Head in Kerry) to the river 
(Blackwater) near Lismore, for the service of 
sixty knights. From this grant was excepted 
the city of Cork and the cantred of the Ostmen 
of the city, which the king retained in his 
own hands, giving the custody only to Fitz 
Stephen and de Cogan.^ In the same way he 

And granted the kingdom of Limerick (with the 

exception of the city and one cantred [of the 
Ostmen], which he retained in his own hands) 
to Herbert Fitz Herbert, William, brother of 
Earl Reginald of Cornwall, and Joel de la 

1 See the Irish Exchequer Memoranda of the reign of 
Edward I : Eng. Hist. Rev. 1903, vol. xviii, p. 505. 

2 This charter is printed in Littleton's Hen. II (App. Ill 
to vol. v) from Ware, and translated in Harris's Ware, 
Antiquities, p. 194. Among the witnesses connected with 
Ireland were Augustin, Bishop of Waterford, William Fitz 
Audelin, Hugh de Lacy, Maurice de Prendergast, Hervey 
de Montmorency, and Robert Fitz Stephen. 



Pomerai, for the service of sixty knights. 
Later in the year, however, Henry granted the 
kingdom of Limerick to PhiHp de Braose, as 
the former grantees renounced the gift on the 
ground that the territory had not yet been won, 
and was not subject to the king.^ 

It is, of course, impossible to reconcile these 
sweeping grants with our ideas of equitable 
dealing ; but it is the business of those who 
study historical actions to endeavour to under- 
stand the point of view of the actors, rather 
than to weigh their acts in modern scales of 
equity. It seems probable that Henry was by 
this time convinced that the Treaty of Windsor 
was utterly unworkable. It was based, as we 
have seen, on the hypothesis that Eory 0' Conor 
was a real king, able to enforce his authority 
over all Ireland outside the portions which Henry 
retained in his direct dominion and in that of 
his barons. But events had shown that in this 
sense Bory was no king, at any rate outside 
his own province, and hardly within it. The 
conditions of the treaty could not possibly be 
enforced. Peace could not be maintained under 
it,, and the aggressive spirit of the Norman 
barons was only too ready to take advantage of 
the inevitable dissensions that broke out among 
the Irish themselves. Henry may well have 

1 Gesta Hen., vol. i, p. 172 ; Roger Howden, vol. ii, 
pp. 133-6. 

1226 II 


thought that the time had come to tear up this 
futile treaty and devise a new and more hopeful 
scheme of government. Besides, here was an 
opportunity to provide a lordship for his 
favourite son John. So John was made Dominus 
Hiherniae, and the policy was adopted of par- 
celling out his as yet unconquered territory 
among trusted vassals as rapidly and as com- 
pletely as might be, leaving it to them to conquer, 
organize, and settle the lands thus granted to 
them. A commencement was made with the 
kingdoms of Cork and Limerick, or Desmond 
and Thomond, which had been torn by the 
recent struggle between the Kings of Connaught 
and Thomond, and by the intestine quarrel 
between the King of Desmond and his son. 

It would have been more creditable, as well as 
probably more effective, if Henry had come 
himself with the armed forces of the Crown 
to impose his dominion over the length and 
breadth of Ireland, and to make a settlement 
which, while inflicting the minimum of hardship 
on Irish kinglets, might have introduced a better 
security for order and peaceful progress than 
any the Irish kinglets could offer. But Henry's 
energies, great as they were, were fully em- 
ployed in other parts of his vast dominions, 
which extended from the North Sea to the 
Pyrenees. Ireland was only an inconsiderable 
fraction of these dominions, and accordingly 


Henry adopted there the less exacting method 
which had already been tried, with but partial 
success it is true, in Wales, of leaving the 
subjugation of the country in private hands. 
And this suggests a sounder ground for con- 
demning the method — it was only partially 
successful in Ireland too. 

Henry next appointed custodians of the lands Custo- 
which were in his hand, including, of course, the Dublin, 
great fief of Leinster, and named the places ^^^^^^^ ' 
where the feudal services in respect of these Water- 

^ ford. 

lands should be paid or performed. He gave 
the custody of Wexford to William Fitz Audelin, 
his dapifer, that of Waterford to Robert le Poer, 
his marshal, and that of Dublin to Hugh de 
Lacy. Further, he defined the lands that were 
to be thenceforth appurtenant to each of these 
cities, and in doing so he seems to have had 
in view a further reduction of the late Earl 
Richard's fief. 

Thus to the service of Wexford, at this time Appor- 
the caput of the lordship of Leinster, Henry of ser- 
appears to have assigned only the following ^'^^^' 
lands : Arklow, the lands comprised in the 
present baronies which adjoin the eastern and 
southern coasts of the County Wexford, the 
baronies of Forth and Idrone in County Carlow, 
the southern part of the County Kildare, to- 
gether with Leix, and the districts left to the 
O'Tooles in the inland parts of the County 



Wicklow.^ These places were presumably in- 
tended to represent Strongbow's fief. To the 
service of Waterford Henry assigned not only 
all the land between the city and the Black- 
water beyond Lismore,^ but also the whole of 
Ossory, usually regarded as part of Leinster ; 
while to the service of Dublin he assigned the 
lands of Offelan, Offaly, and Kildare, as well as 
Wicklow (i. e. the castle and lands held there- 
with) and Meath. It is possible that this dis- 
tribution of services was intended only as a 
temporary arrangement, made for convenience, 
while the fief of Leinster was in the king's hand 
and Hugh de Lacy was custos of Dublin ; but 
in view of the disputes and even warfare that 
afterwards occurred when William Marshal suc- 
ceeded to the fief of Leinster, it seems probable 
that it was interpreted by John, if not intended 

1 The scribe of the Gesta has blundered ov'er some of 
the names, and the passage is corrupt in places, but, with 
the exception of the tenementum Machtaloe (as to the position 
of which I am uncertain), the districts above described are, 
I think, alone included. For terra G. de Bisroharde see 
Song of Dermot, 11. 3114-7 and note. Other less obvious 
equations are, Fernregwinal, the Femegenal of the Song, 
1. 3074 ; Druua (read Druna) : ui Drona, Idrone. Utmorthi 
is not a man's name in the genitive, but represents ui 
lluireadhaigh, usually anghcized Omurethy ; and Leghlin : 
Leighlin was a separate tenement. 

2 It will be remembered that by the Treaty of Windsor 
the western boundary of the royal demesne at Waterford 
was fixed so as to include Dungarvan only. 


by Henry, as defining the limits of that fief. It 
may be regarded as some confirmation of this 
view that Giraldus afterwards mentions with 
some bitterness that Kildare and the adjacent 
territory, which had been given by the earl to 
Meiler Fitz Henry, was taken away from him, 
and the rugged, woody, and hostile march- 
lands of Leix given to him by way of exchange- 
Also, if Offelan, Offaly, and Kildare were at 
this time added to Meath, the increased service, 
that of one hundred knights instead of fifty, 
required, according to the Gesta, by the new 
charter of Meath, would be intelligible. 

The grantees of the kingdoms of Cork or The 
Desmond, and Limerick or Thomond, set out in SkepS- 
company in the month of November, each with ^^^^ ^" 
a band of retainers, to take possession of their 
new fiefs. We can readily understand that this 
promised to be no easy matter. Rory 0' Conor, 
indeed, was not likely to assert his overlordship 
or interfere in any way, but the provincial kings, 
Dermot McCarthy and Donnell O'Brien, might 
be expected to have a word to say. We might 
indeed have supposed that these princes would 
have united with all their forces against their 
common foe, but, so far was this from being 
the case, that, according to an Irish authority, 
Murtough, son of Donnell O'Brien, actually 
assisted the foreigners against the Eang of 
Desmond, the hereditary foe of his house, and 


' accompanied Fitz Stephen and de Cogan to 
Cork, where they committed many depreda- 
tions '.^ This refers to the country about Cork, 
as there was already a Norman governor, 
Richard de Londres, in the city, who received 
them with honour. We are also told that ' the 
churches of the Plain of Munster were burnt by 
Donnell O'Brien ' and the Norman leaders of 
the expedition.- Thus, as in so many other 
cases, it was by Irish aid that Dermot Mc 
Carthy and the lesser chieftains of Desmond 
were speedily overcome, and Fitz Stephen and 
de Cogan were enabled to win for themselves, 
not indeed the whole province at once, but 
seven of its cantreds near the city of Cork. 
These seven cantreds were then divided by lot 
between the grantees, the three eastern ones 
falling to Fitz Stephen, and the four western 
ones to de Cogan.^ 
But de- Having thus arranged matters in Cork, the 
attempt wholc party of adventurers marched to Limerick 
imeric. ^^ place Philip de Braose in possession of his 
fief. Donnell O'Brien was now no longer a 
welcome ally, but a formidable opponent, and 
' for dread of the Dal Cais (Donnell's tribes- 

1 Ann. Inisfallen, Dublin MS., 1177. 

2 Ibid., and Ann. Tigernach. The latter adds, ' and for 
dread of the Dal Cais they (the Foreigners) returned without 
(obtaining their) desire.' This seems to refer to the failure 
to get possession of Limerick. ^ Gir. Camb. v. 348. 



men),' we are told, the * foreigners returned 
without obtaining their desire '. When they 
reached the river in front of the town, they 
saw the desperate citizens (presumably Ostmen) 
once more setting fire to their buildings. Fitz 
Stephen and de Cogan were ready to attempt 
to cross the river and storm the town, or, if 
de Braose preferred, to construct a fortified 
camp for him on the opposite side of the river. 
But Philip, though personally brave, yielding 
to the pusillanimous advice of his friends, pre- 
ferred to return safe home rather than to face 
the perils of fortune in so remote and so hostile 
a land.^ Twenty-four years later Philip's grant 
was renewed to his unfortunate nephew, William 
de Braose,^ and indeed before that time the city 
and much of the territory south of the Shannon 
was in the hands of the foreigners, but for the 
moment, at any rate, Limerick was left un- 

The adventurers in Desmond for a time fared 
better. For the space of five years, we are told, 
they jointly governed the province in peace, 
restraining by their mild rule the impetuous 
spirits of the young men on both sides.^ The 

1 Gir. Camb. v. 349. 

2 Rot. Chart., 2 John, m. 15 (p. 84 b). 

3 In the Register of St. Thomas's Abbey (pp. 201, 209, 
211, 220) will be found several charters which show that 
Gregory, Bishop of Cork, and Reginald, Archdeacon (after- 


families of the leaders became united in mar- 
riage. Fitz Stephen, indeed, had no legitimate 
children, but he had two illegitimate sons with 
him. One of these, Meredith, died soon after 
the arrival in Cork, but the other, Ralph, was 
now married to Margarita, who seems to have 
been the only child and presumptive heiress of 
Miles de Cogan. Were it not for the illegitimacy 
of Ralph Fitz Stephen the two houses were 
likely to become one. Soon after the marriage 
was effected, however, this prosperous beginning 
was interrupted by a tragedy which nearly 
resulted in the destruction of the Anglo-Norman 
settlement in Desmond. Miles de Cogan, Ralph 
Fitz Stephen, and five other knights went in 
the direction of Lismore to meet the men of 
Miles de Watcrford in a parley. While awaiting the 
and^"^ advent of the latter they were treacherously 
siain^^ attacked by Mac Tire, chieftain of Imokilly, and 
1182. all slain.^ This massacre led to a general rising 

wards bishop), acted at this time with Miles de Cogan and 
Robert Fitz Stephen in endowing the new foundation of 
St. Thomas's, Dubhn, with churches, lands, &c., in Cork 
and the neighbourhood. 

^ Gir. Camb. v. 350. The account in the Annals of 
Loch Ce states that besides Miles de Cogan and ' the two 
sons of Stephen ' there were slain ' Mac Sleimne, Thomas 
Sugach ("the Merry"), Cenn Cuilenn (" Holly-head"), and 
Remunn,' Who were meant by these names is unknown. 
Remunn was certainly not Raymond le Gros (as stated in 
the Annals of Clonmacnois), nor Raymond Fitz Hugh (as 
supposed by the editors of the Annals of Loch Ce and of 


of the Irish of Desmond against the EngUsh, 
and Robert Fitz Stephen was hemmed in by his 
enemies on all sides, in the town of Cork. Ray- 
mond le Gros, however, on hearing of his uncle's 
perilous condition, came to the rescue by sea 
from Waterford with a small band. With his 
usual success, he quickly dispersed the Irish and 
brought peace once more to the district. Richard 
de Cogan was now sent by the king to take the 
place of his brother Miles,^ and in February 1183 
Philip de Barry crossed over to Cork both to aid 
Fitz Stephen and to undertake the governance 
of Olethan, which had been granted to him by 
his uncle. Along with Philip came his brother 
Gerald, the historian, to whose observation and 
inquiries we owe much of our knowledge of 
recent and contemporary events.^ 

Ulster), for the latter witnessed a grant by Philip de Barry, 
which was also witnessed by Gerald the historian, and must 
be dated 1183 : Eeg. St. Thomas's, p. 205. Cenn Cuilinn 
cannot be a corruption of Reimundus Kantitunensis, as 
suggested by the editor of the Annals of Loch Ce, for, 
according to Gerald, he was slain in Ossory c. 1185 : Gir. 
Camb. V. 386. 

1 i.e. as baiUff of the king's demesnes in the city of Cork 
and its vicinity. 

2 Gir. Camb., p. 351. ' Master Gerald the Archdeacon ' 
[of Brecknock] was one of the witnesses to a grant made 
at this time by Philip de Barry of two carucates of land 
adjoining the bridge of Dungarvan [close to the town of 
Cork] and the site of a mill to the church of St. Thomas, 
Dublin : Reg. St. Thomas's, p. 205. 


We hear nothing more of Robert Fitz Stephen 
and little more of Raymond le Gros. Probably 
the former did not long survive the rising of 
1182, though he was clearly alive when his 
nephew Gerald first came to Ireland in 1183.^ 
When and how Raymond died is also quite 
uncertain. He was alive when John came to 
Ireland in 1185,^ and must have been dead 
before the close of the century, when we find his 
widow Basilia married to Geoffrey Fitz Robert.^ 
On the other hand, Raymond can hardly have 
died before 1189, as otherwise his death would 
surely be noticed in the Expugnatio, first pub- 
lished when Henry II was alive, and probably 
in that year.* Ware mentions a tradition that 
Raymond was buried at the abbey of Molana, 

1 Gerald says that his brother, PhiHp de Barry, came at 
the end of February 1183 ' ad avunculi subventionem ', and 
describes himself as coming in the same ship and 'tarn 
avunculum quam fratrem plurimum consiho juvans '. There 
is httle doubt that it was from Fitz Stephen he derived most 
of the early story of the invasion. He does not expressly 
record his uncle's death, but the allusion to Raymond ' in 
hereditatem patruo succedens ' (which appears in the early 
MSS.) implies it. 

- ' Reimundus filius Willelmi ' is one of the witnesses to 
John's confirmation charter to St. Mary's Abbey, tested at 
Dublin. See Chartulary, vol. i, pp. 85, 86. 

3 Reg. St. Thomas's, Dublin, p. 112. Witnessed by John, 
Bishop of Leighhn, who was consecrated in 1198 (Papal 
Letters (Bliss), vol. i, p. 3) and died c. 1201 (Ware). 

4 For the date of the first edition of the Expugnatio, see 
Mr. Dimock's preface, pp. Ivi-lviii. 


situated on the Blackwater a little above 
Youghal, and this tradition may have been well 
founded, though both Raymond and his wife 
bequeathed their bodies to be buried in the 
abbey of St. Thomas, Dublin, of which they 
were munificent benefactors.^ It is unfortunate 
that, owing to the imperfection of our records, 
the passing of Raymond, the most brilliant 
commander and the most picturesque figure in 
the army of the invaders, should be so obscure. 

It is not possible to give a full account of the 
early sub-infeudation of the ' kingdom of Cork ', 
or even to be sure how far it was carried in the 
lifetime of the original grantees. In the case Fitz 
of Fitz Stephen, at any rate, it is pretty plain graStSs.^ 
that, besides making large grants out of the 
three cantreds to the east of Cork originally, 
with the acquiescence of Dermot Mac Carthy, 
allotted to him, he made what we may call 
' speculative grants ' of lands far removed from 
these cantreds. Thus by his charter to Philip 
de Barry he granted not only Olethan, but also 
two other cantreds, to be determined by lot.^ 
What these two cantreds were ultimately decided 
to be, we know from John's confirmatory charter 

1 Reg. St. Thomas's, pp. 113 (c. 1184), 111 (c. 1200). 

2 ' Olethan cum omnibus pertinentiis suis et duas alias 
cantredas in regno Corehaiae prout sorte obvenient ei pro 
servitio decem militum ' : Lodge, vol. i, p. 287, and Harris's 
Ware, Antiq., p. 195. 


to William de Barry, Philip's son, made in 
1207.^ They were ' Muscherie Dunegan' and 
'Killede', of which the former is roughly repre- 
sented by the barony of Orrery and Kilmore, 
County Cork, and the latter was comprised 
in the barony of Glenquin, County Limerick.^ 
To Alexander, son of Maurice Fitz Gerald,^ 

1 Chart., 9 John, m.5{p. 172), Cal. Docs. Irel., vol. i,no.340. 

2 Muscherie Dunegan appears as the deanery of 'Muxy- 
donnegan ' or ' Muscridonegan ' in the ecclesiastical taxations 
of 1302-6 (Cal. Docs. Irel., vol. v, pp. 277 and 314), and 
the parishes enumerated are comprised in the barony of 
Orrery and Kilmore with smaU adjacent parts of the 
baronies of Duhallow and Fermoy. The position of 
' Killede ' was long unknown, but that it is now represented 
by KiUeedy in the barony of Glenquin, County Limerick, 
appears from an inquisition post mortem on the lands of 
John Fitz Thomas, 10 Ed. I, no. 21: 'Idem Johannes 
tenuit unum cantredum apud KyUyde Hy Connil et castrum 
in eodem comitatu (Limerick) de Johanne de Barry pro 
duobus serviciis miUtum.' The ruins of a castle at Killeedy 
are situated on an artificial mound near a bend of a stream. 
The mound probably represents the original mote, and 
is an indication that the grant was utiUzed probably before 
the close of the twelfth century at latest. For the identifi- 
cation of Killeedy, co. Limerick, with the Killede of Philip's 
charter see the writer's paper, ' Notes on some Limerick 
Castles,' Journ. R. S. A. I., 1909, p. 30. 

^ Alexander Fitz Maurice granted the church, &c., 'de 
villa mea que vocatur KilHe' [Killeigh in Imokilly], to the 
Abbey of St. Thomas, Reg. St. Thomas's, Dublin, p. 206. 
The lands probably passed to Alexander's brother, Gerald, 
who held the land of Oglassin in this district (Cal. Docs. 
Irel., vol. i, nos. 586, 598), and from him to lois son Maurice, 
who may be regarded as the founder of Youghal. 


Fitz Stephen seems to have made a grant 
in Imokilly which was the origin of the Fitz 
Gerald property here. Other landholders in 
Fitz Stephen's time were, in Imokilly, Raymond 
Mangunel,^ and Robert and Thomas des Auters 
or de Altaribus ; ^ and in Fermoy, Alexander and 
Raymond Fitz Hugh.^ Modern writers speak of 
Alexander Fitz Hugh as de Rupe or Roche, but 
in the charters he always appears as Alexander 
filius Hugonis, and Giraldus calls his brother 
Raymond 'Hugonides' and seems to include him 
m the noble band of his own kinsmen. 

As to the four cantreds assigned to Miles de De 
Cogan on the western side of Cork we have no cantreds 
direct information, but they perhaps included 
the barony of Muskerry and a broad strip along 
the coast between the harbours of Cork and 
Glandore. In 1207 King John made large grants 
within these districts to Richard de Cogan, 
Philip de Prendergast, and Robert Fitz Martin, 
to hold of the king in fee. Also a grant to 
David de Rupe of the cantred of Rosselither 

1 Raymond Mangunel held Cahirultan, in the parish of 
Ballyoughtera, Imokilly ; Reg. St. Thomas, Dubhn, p. 216. 

2 These brothers held Castleoor (Middleton) and Castle- 
martyr in Imokilly (ibid., p. 319) ; lands which afterwards 
were purchased by Richard de Carew (ibid., p. 200). 

^ Alexander and Raymond Fitz Hugh held Kilcummer 
in Fermoy (ibid., p. 217), and the former afterwards founded 
the Priory de Ponte (Bridgetown) ; see the Charter in 
Dugdale, vi. 1146, and Cal. Charter Rolls, ii, p. 341. 


(Rosscarbery).^ These grants certainly seem 
to deal with Miles de Cogan's cantreds and to 
ignore the de Cogan seignory. Perhaps no 
effective settlement had been made in them 
during Miles' s lifetime, but in any case arbitrary 
dealing of this sort with lands already granted 
was eminently characteristic of King John. 
Some grants by Miles de Cogan have been 
preserved in the Register of St. Thomas's, but 
with the exception of the grant of a knight's 
fee in Cridarim {Crich Dairine, i. e. Rosscarbery ?) 
they were all made on behalf of the king and 
were concerned with houses and lands in or near 
the town of Cork, i. e. within the crown lands 
there. Among the witnesses to these charters were 
the following (who were also probably grantees 
of his lands) : Richard and Geoffrey de Cogan, 
Richard de Pincheni, William de Bridesal, Roger 
de Chirchehille, Lucas de Londiniis, who married 
Leuki, daughter of Robert (p. 207), Roger of 
Oxford, and Richard Fitz Godebert, who may have 
been the knight of Pembrokeshire whom Dermot 
brought back with him in 1167, and whose sons 
probably took the name of de Rupe or Roche, as 
their cousins in the County Wexford did. 

What became of the seignory of the lands 
included in the grant to Miles de Cogan and 
Robert Fitz Stephen has never been elucidated. 

1 Rot. Chart., 9 John, pp. 171-3, where 'Insovenach ' is 
Inishannon, and its port is Kinsale Harbour. 


It was indeed the subject of a claim made nearly 
four centuries later by Sir Peter Carew. How- 
ever preposterous, after such a lapse of time, 
was Sir Peter's claim, it seems certain that 
throughout the greater part of the thirteenth 
century a Carew and a de Courcy shared in equal 
moieties the interests of the original grantees.^ 

Can we discover the heirs of the original 
grantees ? We are expressly told that Ray- 
mond le Gros succeeded to the inheritance of 
his uncle, Robert Fitz Stephen, and obtained Fitz 
the custody of the town of Cork.^ Raymond moiety" ^ 
died childless, and his heir was probably his 
next brother, Odo de Carew. By what steps the 

^ Thus in the roll of services due to the king in the different 
counties of Ireland c. 1297-8 the total due from Cork is 
61 1 services. Of these 30 were due from Robert de Carew 
and the like number from Patrick Courcy, thus making up 
the original 60 services. The remaining 1| services were 
due from Gerald de Prendergast : Irish Exchequer Memo- 
randa transcribed Eng. Hist. Rev., vol. xviii (1903), p. 504 ; 
cf . Car. Cal. Misc., p. 232, and Cal. Docs. Irel. 1296, nos. 288, 
473. A Patrick Courcy and Robert de Carew (predecessors 
of the above ?) were among the magnates of Cork from 
as early as 1221 : Cal. Docs. Irel., vol. i, nos. 1001, 2266. 
In the inquisition on the lands of Gerald de Prendergast 
in 1251 (Cal. Docs. Irel., vol. i, no. 3203) it was found 
that he held of the king in capite Bellonar and Dufglas 
(i.e. Beavor or Carrigaline and Douglas, south of the town 
of Cork) by the service of two knights. 

2 Gir. Camb. v. 350. If, as is generally supposed, 
Robert Fitz Stephen was a bastard, Raymond's succession 
to his inheritance must have been due to a fresh grant. 


seignory passed from Raymond's heir to the 
Robert de Carew who was tenant-in-chief in 
1221 is obscure, but that it remained in the 
family for more than a century seems certain.^ 
How the seignory was eventually lost to the 
Carews is perhaps clearer to us than to those 
who opposed Sir Peter Carew' s claim in the 
latter part of the sixteenth century. An 
attempted alienation without licence of the 
cantred of Fermoy by Maurice de Carew, then 
tenant-in-chief, was held in 1302 to work a for- 
feiture, as contrary to the newly enacted Statute 
of Quia Emptores, and David de Rupe (Roche), 
who held the cantred under Maurice de Carew, 
became tenant-in-chief. ^ Possibly at this time 
the dominium was more burdensome than it 
was worth. In the next generation Thomas 
de Carew, son of Maurice, released to David 
de Barry the manors of Olethan and Muscry- 
donegan, and consequently the latter, in the 
year 1336, became tenant-in-chief of the Crown. ^ 

1 From a confirmatory charter preserved in the Register 
of St. Thomas's, p. 200, it would seem probable that about 
1224 Richard de Carew held the seignory of Fitz Stephen's 
moiety. Cf . for the date, charter, ibid., p. 213, and the con- 
firmations by Marian O'Brien, Bishop of Cork, pp. 220-1. 

2 See the Cal, Justiciary Rolls for 1302, pp. 383-5, where 
the proceedings are reported. This David de Rupe was son 
of Alexander, and grandson of David. 

3 Irish Close RoUs, 32 Ed. Ill, no. 26. The father and 
grandfather of this David de Barry were both named David. 


As to the moiety of Miles de Cogan, his De 
heir was his daughter, Margarita de Cogan, the moiety. 
tiewly-made widow of Ralph Fitz Stephen.^ She 
may possibly have had an only daughter and 
heiress, perhaps a posthumous child, by Ralph 
Fitz Stephen, but, as we have seen, her claims 
For the time appear to have been ignored. How 
the seignory passed to the de Courcys, as it 
seems to have done early in the thirteenth 
century, has not been precisely ascertained. 
Probably a de Courcy married a de Cogan 
heiress. Lodge, indeed, states that the Patrick 
de Courcy, who appears along with Robert de 
Carew as a magnate in Cork in 1221, married 
the daughter and heir of Miles de Cogan. ^ But 
for such a marriage there is no actual authority.^ 

1 She was given by Robert Fitz Stephen, as her marriage 
portion with his son, one half of Inismor, i.e. the Great 
Island in Cork Harbour, and she gave to St. Thomas's the 
church of CloenmedU there, i. e. Clonmel in Great Island, 
not Clonmel Tipperary, as absurdly stated by the editor : 
Reg. St. Thomas's, Dublin, pp. 226-7. 

2 Vol. vi, p 146. The treatment in Lodge, however, of 
the early pedigree of the barons of Kinsale does not inspire 

^ It appears, however, from the Pipe Rolls, that in 1212 
Thomas Bloet owed 500 marks ' for having all the land 
which belonged to Milo Cogan in Ireland with his niece 
(or granddaughter ?) in marriage ' : Cal. Docs. Irel., vol. i, 
nos. 422, 452. But this fine was still unpaid in 1227 (ibid., 
no. 1504), and in that year Kilmohanoc (now Kilmonoge) in 
Kinalea, which had formerly belonged to Miles de Cogan 
(Chart. St. Mary's, ii. 4), and appears to have been held by 

1226 II D 


Thomas Bloet, was granted during pleasure to Richard de 
Cogan (Cal. Docs. Irel., i, nos. 1537, 1646), and was subse- 
quently treated as an escheat : ibid., ii, nos. 262, 390. 
Meantime, in 1217, soon after the accession of Henry III, 
Margery Cogan (presumablj^ the widow of Ralph FitzStephen) 
offered 100 marks * to have the land of her inheritance in 
Desmond ' ; Close Roll, 1 Hen. Ill, p. 297. This she seems 
to have obtained, and we find ' Margarita filia Milonis 
de Cogan ' at about this date making a large grant in 
Rosselethry (Rosscarbery), and confirming her father's grant 
of Kilmohanoc to St. Mary's Abbey, DubUn ; see Chartulary, 
vol. ii, p. 4. It looks as if the de Cogan seignory, over- 
ridden by John's grants of 1207, was, in part at least, 
restored to Margarita on the accession of Henry III. At 
this time she must have been at least fifty years of age ; 
but she may have been long married to a de Courcy. It 
was customary for heiresses to retain their maiden names. 




While John de Courcy was carving out 
a lordship for himself in Ulster, and Robert 
Eitz Stephen and Miles de Cogan were endea- 
vouring to establish themselves in Munster, 
Hugh de Lacy, the newly-appointed viceroy, Hugh de 
was strengthening the position, both in Meath chief 
and in Leinster, by building castles and by the ^^v^^'^^^- 
wisdom and moderation of his rule. This re- 
markable man, the fifth Baron Lacy by tenure, 
was descended from Walter, the first baron, who 
died in 1089. The family received their name 
from their original seat at Lassy in the Vire 
country in Normandy. The principal estates 
of the Lacy family lay on the borders of Wales 
at Ewias Lacy, Staunton Lacy, and Weobly. 
Ludlow Castle also belonged to them.^ Hugh His 
de Lacy is described by Giraldus ^ as a swarthy tion, 
man with small black deep-set eyes, a flat nose, 
an ugly scar on his right cheek caused by a burn, 

1 Diet. Nat. Biog. In 1165-6 Hugh de Lacy held 58| 
knights' fees and had nine tenants without knight service : 
Eyton, Shropshire, vol. v, p. 253. 2 y, 354. 

D 2 



a short neck, and a hairy, sinewy body. He was 
short and ill-made in person, but in character 
firm and resolute, and of French sobriety. He 
was very attentive to his private affairs, and 
in office a most vigilant public administrator. 
Although much experienced in military matters, 
he was not fortunate as a general. After his 
wife's death he fell into loose moral ways. He 
was very covetous, and immoderately ambitious 
of honour and renown. 
Not much Upon his first appointment, in April 1172, he 
prior to ^^^ ^^^t remain many months in Ireland. He 
seems to have visited the country again in the 
early part of 1174, when he erected the mote- 
castle of Trim, but he left before its destruction 
by Rory 0' Conor in that year. Thenceforward 
we can trace him in the entourage of the king 
up to the Council of Oxford in 1177, and he 
cannot have been long, if at all, in Ireland during 
these years. ^ He had, however, already made 
many grants of lands within his lordship. 

1 Hugh de Lacy was at Canterbury on December 29, 
1172 : Gir. Camb. vii. 69. In 1173 he was at Alen9on 
in April, defending Verneuil in July, and at Caen in 
December. He seems to have come to Ireland early in 
1174 : Song of Dermot, 11. 3222-31 ; but he was at Rouen 
in December. In 1175 he was at Valognes in April, at 
Northampton in August, and at Feckenham in October. 
In 1176 he was at Shrewsbury in January, and at Win- 
chester in April ; and in 1177 he was at Reading in April, 
and at Oxford in May : Eyton's Itin. 


During his tenure of office we hear of Uttle or His rule, 
no fighting either in Meath or in Leinster. An 
apparently unsuccessful attempt was made to 
gain a footing at Clonmacnois, where, however, 
the churches and bishop's houses were respected, 
and a battle was fought between Art O'Melaghlin 
and Melaghlin Beg, rival claimants to the king- 
ship of Westmeath, in which the English joined 
on the side of the former.^ Clearly Hugh de 
Lacy was no mere filibuster, though he was 
determined to hold with the strong hand and 
bo rule the districts committed to his charge. 
With this object he erected many castles, of 
a type similar to the castles of Trim and Slane, 
both in Meath and in Leinster. He made it his 
first care, we are told, to invite back to peace 
the rural inhabitants who had been violently 
3xpelled from their territories — probably in 
the course of the reprisals which followed on 
Rory O'Conor's hosting of 1174 — and to restore 
bo them their farms and pasture lands. His 
next aim was to restrain the townsfolk and 
compel them to obey the laws and submit to 
governance. Thus he soon established peace 
in the land, and indeed, by his liberal treatment 

1 Ann. Tigernach, Four Masters, 1178. In the latter 
contest Murtough, son of the Sinnagh (i.e. O'Caharny sur- 
lamed the Fox), was slain. This is perhaps noteworthy, 
IS it was at the instigation of ' the Sinnagh ' that Hugh de 
Lacy was murdered in 1186. 


and affability, so gained the hearts of the Irish 
people — winning over even their chieftains to 
his side — as to give rise to the suspicion that he 
meditated renouncing his allegiance and usurping 
the crown of Ireland for himself.^ 
ifugh That Henry was for some reason dissatisfied 

super- with Hugh de Lacy appears from the fact that 

seded. j^ ^^y jjgj ^^ ^^^^ jj.^^ j^.^ ^^^ custody of 

Dublin and sent over in his place to that city 
John (de Lacy), Constable of Chester, and Richard 
de Pec, an itinerant justice. One reason given 
for this change is that Hugh had married, accord- 
ing to the custom of the country, the daughter of 
the King of Connaught without Henry's licence.^ 
Henry was always suspicious of his Irish barons 
and jealously watchful lest they should get too 
powerful, and he may have thought that this 
alliance with Rory O'Conor's daughter, like 
Strongbow's marriage with Eva MacMurrough, 
might lead to the acquisition of too great power. 

^ Gir. Camib. v. 353. William of Newburgh also says 
that Hugh de Lacy aspired to obtain the crown of Ireland 
for himself, vol. 1, pp. 239-40. Early in 1179 some Irish- 
men came to Windsor to complain of unjust treatment at 
the hands of Hugh de Lacy and WiUiam Fitz Audelin : 
Gesta Hen., vol. i, p. 221. 

2 Gesta Hen., vol. i, p. 270. The marriage ' secundum 
morem patriae ilhus ' was probably some sort of loose 
union repudiated by the Anglican Church, perhaps 'a 
Teltown marriage '. It took place in 1180 : Ann. Inis- 
fallen (MS. T. CD.); of. Gir. Camb.'s account of Hugh 
de Lacy's character. 


But that Hugh de Lacy had really any intention 
of ' usurping the crown of Ireland ' is incon- 
sistent with all we know of his character and 

Before departing, however, Hugh de Lacy Castles 
advised with the new governors as to the erection by him in 
of several castles in Leinster, which we have ^^^°^*^'"- 
already mentioned when treating of the sub- 
infeudation of that lordship. One other castle is 
expressly named as having been erected by him 
a little earlier. This was the castrum Lechliniae, 
or castle of Leighlin, and from the description 
given it is very probable that its site is marked 
by an important mote, called Burgage or Bally- 
knockan mote, on the west bank of the Barrow, 
about haK a mile below Leighlin bridge.^ It 
appears that Henry had ordered that a fortress 
should be erected here, but Robert le Poer, the 
custos of Waterford, who, according to Gerald, 
was wanting in energy and valour and utterly 
unfit for border warfare, had failed to carry out 
the royal command.^ A namesake now, but 

^ Gir. Camb. v. 352 : ' Super nobilem Beruae fluvium 
a latere Ossiriae trans Odronam in loco natura muni to 
Lechliniae castrum erexit/ 

2 ' A quo Robertus Poer cui regio mandato injunctum id 
fuerat ante defecerat,' ibid. This sentence follows that last 
quoted, and has, I think, been misunderstood. According 
to the Annals of InisfaUen (DubHn copy), Robert Poer 
was killed in 1178 in an expedition against the O'Tooles of 
Hy Muireadhaigh (South Kildare). He was succeeded in 


a very dififerent man, Roger le Poer, who had 
fought courageously under de Courcy at the 
battle of Do^vn, was placed at the head of the 
garrison here, and gained great renown until he 
and many of his followers were cut off in Ossory 
about the year 1188. Of this mishap we have 
no details, but it is said to have led to a wide- 
spread conspiracy of the Irish against the English, 
and to the destruction of many castles.^ 
Death of On November 14, 1180, Laurence O'Toole, the 
bishop last Celtic archbishop of Dublin, died.^ Since 
Laurence, jjenry's visit to Ireland, if not before, Lau- 
rence O'Toole, in common with the Irish clergy 
generally, seems to have loyally acquiesced in 
the new regime and cordially co-operated with 
the new rulers. Verifiable facts concerning him 
during this period are few. He was an assenting 

Waterford by William Poer : Gir. Camb. v. 354. In the 
Pipe Roll, 25 Hen. II (1178-9), p. 67, is the entry ' pro cc. 
summis frumenti missis Roberto Poherio in Hibemia 
XX. 1. per breve regis '. Com was sent in the same year to 
Raymond Fitz William and to the officers of Hugh de Lacy. 

1 Gir. Camb. v. 341, 354, 387. The date 1188 is from 
the Annals of Inisfallen, DubMn MS. 

2 That this was the true date appears from a comparison 
of the statement in his Life, by Surius, as to the day of his 
death, Friday, November 14, with the year 1180 as given 
in the Irish annals, though his death is referred to earh- in 
1181 in Gesta Hen., vol. i, p. 270. See Ussher's Sj'lloge, 
note to no. 48. Probably the date in the Gesta, post 
Purificationem S. M., 1181, should really refer only to the 
seizure of the archbishopric into the king's hand, to which 
the account of the death of the archbishop is introductory. 


party at the Council of Cashel in 1172. He 
witnessed Strongbow's grant of the abbacy of 
Glendalough to ' Thomas his beloved cleric '. 
He saw the commencement of the building of 
the new and stately fane of the cathedral church 
of the Holy Trinity in Dublin. In it he buried 
Kichard of Striguil, and to it, when Hugh de 
Lacy was constable, probably in 1178, he con- 
firmed all its numerous possessions.-^ He was 
present at the Council at Windsor on the 
6th of October 1175, and witnessed the treaty 
there made between Henry and Rory 0' Conor. ^ 
In March 1179 he attended the general council 
of Lateran, when he was accompanied by 
Catholicus and five or six Irish bishops. On 
their way through England they obtained leave 
from Henry to go to Rome, on their solemnly 
swearing that they would seek nothing to the 
detriment of the king or his kingdom.^ Giraldus 

1 Chartae Privil. et Immun., p. 2 ; Cal. Liber Albus, 
Ch. Ch., no. 42. This deed must be subsequent to 1173, 
when the predecessor of Eugenius, Bishop of Clonard, died 
(Ann. Ulster), and therefore subsequent to Hugh de Lacy's 
appointment as custos of Dubhn in May 1177. It should 
probably be dated May 14, 1178, before the archbishop 
went to the Lateran Council. It shows that the churches 
of St. Michan, St. Michael, St. John the EvangeUst, St. 
Bridget, and St. Paul, were all then in existence. Tor- 
quellus, the archdeacon, and some of the attesting presbyters 
have Scandinavian names. 

2 Gesta Hen. i. 102 ; Hoveden, ii. 83. 

^ Gesta Hen. i. 221. The prelates were assisted in the 


states that Henry was afterwards displeased 
with Archbishop Laurence on the ground that 
he had obtained some privileges at the Lateran 
Council inconsistent with the royal dignity, and 
that consequently Henry detained the Arch- 
bishop both in England and in France, and that 
at length he died at Eu in Normandy.^ The 
archbishop did indeed bring back two privilegia 
from Pope Alexander III : one confirming to 
him and his successors the rights and posses- 
sions (enumerated at length) of the see of Dublin, 
with metropolitan jurisdiction over the dioceses 
of Glendalough, Kildare, Ferns, Leighlin, and 
Ossory ; the other making a like confirmation 
to Malchus, Bishop of Glendalough, and his 
successors, in each case threatening spiritual 
penalties on anybody interfering with those 
possessions.^ It is possible that Henry had 
already entertained the design of uniting the 
sees of Dublin and Glendalough, and in any case 
he may have resented this interference of the 
Pope. But the English Chroniclers, who had 
better means of knowing the facts, say nothing 
about Henry's displeasure. They state that 
the archbishop crossed the sea to the king in 

passage by the CrowTi : Pipe Roll, 25 Hen. II, and the 
sherififs of London and Middlesex redeemed some pledges 
for Archbishop Laurence and for Brictius, Bishop of 
Limerick : ibid. To travel from Dublin to Rome in the 
twelfth century was an expensive matter. 

1 Gir. Camb. v. 357. ^ Crede Mihi, nos. i and iii. 


Normandy, bringing with him the son of Rory 
0' Conor as a hostage for the due performance 
of the treaty to pay tribute, and that, having 
obtained leave to return to his country, the 
archbishop got as far as Eu, where he was 
detained by illness and after a few days died.* 
It would seem, then, that the archbishop had 
returned to Ireland after attending the Lateran 
Council, and that it was on the occasion of 
a subsequent mission to Normandy ^ with the 
hostage of the King of Connaught that he died. 

According to aU testimony, Laurence 0' Toole 
was a just and good man and had the best interest 
of his country at heart. Forty-six years after 
his death he was canonized as a saint. But, as 
has been weU remarked, in those times of transi- 
tion statesmen and not saints were needed,^ 
and the next three archbishops belonged to the 
former category. 

Henry at once sent over his officers to take 
possession of the temporalities of the see of 
Dublin. This was early in 1181, when the new 
custodians of Dublin were appointed.* In Sep- 
tember Henry's nominee, John Cumin (or Comyn, 
as the name came to be written), a monk of 

1 Gesta Hen. i. 270 ; Hoveden, ii. 253. 

2 Henry did not leave England for Normandy until 
April 1180 : Eyton's Itin., p. 232. 

^ Stokes, Anglo-Norman Church, p. 199. 
4 Gesta Hen. i. 280, 


John the abbey of Evesham in Worcestershire, was 
elected elected by the bishops and clergy of England and 
bishop of some of the clergy of the metropolitan church 
Dubhn. Qf Dublin who had come to England for the 
purpose. He had at the time only deacon's 
orders, and was an ambassador, a judge, an 
officer of the court, rather than a pastor.^ On 
March 21, 1182, he was consecrated Archbishop 
of Dublin by Pope Lucius III at Velletri, and 
about the same time he obtained from the 
Pope a new privilege confirming to him and his 
successors the possessions, rights, and metro- 
politan jurisdiction of the see.^ This document 
does not, like its predecessor, give a long list 
of Irish names denoting the churches, vills, 
and possessions of the see. In the phraseology 
of Norman law it mentions only the manor of 
Swords, the vill of Lusk, and the Great Vill 

1 In 1164 John Com}^! or Cumin was ambassador at the 
court of the Emperor Frederic. In 1166-7 he was at 
Rome wdth reference to the dispute -with Becket (by whom 
he was afterwards excommunicated), and again in December 
1170, at the time of Becket's murder. In 1177 he was sent 
as ambassador to Spain. We find him repeatedly acting 
as a justice in eyre and amongst the king's entourage ; see 
Eyton's Itin. of Hen. II. It is expressly stated in the Gesta 
Henrici (vol. i, p. 287) that John Cumin was honourably 
received by the Pope, and ' ab eodem factus est cardinalis, 
ut gratius imponeret ei summus Pontifex munus ordinationis 
et consecrationis '. So Giraldus was not alone, as Dimock 
thought, in calling Cumin a ' presbyter cardinalis ' : Gir. 
Camb., p. 358, n. 2 Crede Mihi, no. ii. 


(Finglas or Tallaght ?), and lumps the rest in 
general terms. It is noteworthy that it speaks of 
the see of Wexford, and not of Ferns, the old Celtic 
seat of the bishopric, and terms the see of Glenda- 
lough, Insularum Episcopatus. But historically its 
most important provision was that which forbade 
any archbishop or bishop from holding synods, 
hearing causes, or transacting any ecclesiastical 
business in the diocese without the assent of the 
Archbishop of Dublin — a provision which led to a 
lengthened dispute with the Primate of Armagh. 
John Cumin's tenure of the see was remarkable 
for many changes in the direction of promoting 
its temporal power and welfare. He was in- Union of 
strumental in uniting with it the see of Glenda- of ^DubUn 
lough, including ultimately the rich lands of the ^"f^^^^"' 
abbey, which were distinct from those of the 
bishopric. At the time of the S3niod of Kells 
(1152) Dublin seems to have been regarded as 
within the diocese of Glendalough, but there 
were two bishops in the diocese, the Celtic 
bishop of Glendalough and the bishop of the 
Ostmen of Dublin. At that synod, however. 
Cardinal Papiro, the papal legate, gave one of 
the four palls to Dublin, ' as being most fitted 
for a metropolitan city,' and probably as being 
already in connexion with Rome, and made 
a division of the diocese. Even at the coming 
of the Normans, however, all the endowments 
of the archiepiscopal see were in the near neigh- 


bourhood of Dublin. Glendalough was a purely 
Celtic monastery, in which the abbot was a more 
important personage than the bishop, though 
both bishopric and abbacy were extensively 
endowed. The absorption of the bishopric and 
rich abbatial possessions of Glendalough into 
the see of Dublin was an object early aimed at 
by the Anglo-Norman rulers, but it was not fully 
attained until after the death of William Piro, 
Bishop of Glendalough, in 1214.^ Even before the 
union was completed, however, the archbishop 
became the largest landholder in the neighbour- 
hood of Dublin, and, apart from his prerogatives 
as a prelate, exercised in his demesne lands all 
the rights and jurisdiction of a feudal baron. 
The col- Archbishop Cumin constituted the ancient 
clSxch parochial church of St. Patrick, which stood 
Pah-ick outside the walls of Dublin, a prebendal church, 
and in it created ' a college of clerics of approved 
life and learning, who should afford by their 
honest conversation an example of living for all, 
and by their learning an instruction to the 
illiterate '.^ This collegiate church he endowed 
out of the possessions of the see, and assigned 
to it thirteen churches, which became the 

^ See Note appended to this chapter. 

2 gee the foundation charter in Mason's History of St. 
Patrick's, Appendix I. It must be dated in or prior to 
1191, when it was confirmed by a Bull of Pope Celestine III : 
ibid., App. II. 


original prebends of the new college.^ He made 
no change with regard to the church of the 
Holy Trinity, which still remained the sole 
cathedral church with a prior and monastic 
chapter, and it was not until the year 1219 
that Cumin's successor, Archbishop Henry de 
Londres, by a new charter ^ creating a dean 
and chapter, raised the collegiate church of 
St. Patrick to the rank of a cathedral. About it after- 
the close of the twelfth century monastic becomes 
chapters were out of favour with many English ^^t*^^^ 
bishops, and there was a movement to substitute 
secular canons, over whom the bishops would 
have more control. Hence the raising of St. 
Patrick's to the rank of cathedral, and hence 
the anomaly of two cathedral churches in the 
same diocese. The co-existence of two cathe- 
drals in Dublin, however, led, as might be 
expected, to disputes as to precedence, rights, 
and jurisdiction, which were not finally arranged 
until the year 1300.^ Archbishop Cumin is said 

1 The names of the original prebends are given in Celes- 
tine's Bull. They seem to have been, Swords, Clonmethan, 
Ireland's Eye (afterwards Howth), Finglas, Clondalldn, 
Imelach (Tavelach, Tallaght ?), Killesantan, Stahelach 
(Stahney, Taney ?), Donnachimelecha (now Burgage), 
Stagonil (included in Powerscourt), St. Nicholas of Dublin, 
Ballymore (Ballymore Eustace), Donaghmore (Yago). 

2 Mason's Hist, of St. Patrick's, App. IV. 

^ See the Pads compositio in Mason's Hist, of St. Patrick's, 
App. VI. 


to have demolished the old parochial church 
of St. Patrick, and to have built for his new 
foundation a new edifice which was dedicated 
on St. Patrick's Day, 1191. The existing fabric, 
however, a fine example of Early English, belongs 
to a somewhat later date.^ Like Christ Church, 
it has been recently restored and provided with 
suitable surroundings by the munificence of a 
family of which Dublin may well be proud. 
John Cumin is also believed to have built the 
The palace of St. Sepulchre, close to his collegiate 

of St. church, as an archiepiscopal residence. This 

Sepulchre, i , i j. £ ^ • j • • • 

^ became the seat oi his adjonnng manor or 

liberty, as it was called, of St. Sepulchre, wherein 
the archbishops of Dublin exercised jurisdic- 
tion up to recent times. The manor originally 
embraced the parishes of St. Kevin (now in- 
cluded in St. Peter's) and St. Nicholas Without.^ 
The former residence of the archbishops was 
close to the church of the Holy Trinity,^ but 
Cumin appears to have given this up to the 

1 In 1225 protection was granted for four years for 
the preachers of the fabric of the church of St. Patrick, 
DubHn, going through Ireland to beg alms for that 
fabric : Rot. Pat., 9 Hen. Ill, Cal. no. 1241. This 
probably affords an indication of the date of the existing 

2 -por an account of the Manor of St. Sepulchre in the 
fourteenth century see papers by Mr. James Mills, Journ. 
R.S. A. I., 1889 and 1890. 

3 Qal. Liber Niger, Ch. Ch., no. 140. 


^rior and canons for their offices.^ Li moving 
jhe archiepiscopal residence from beside the 
cathedral to the vicinity of his new collegiate 
ihurch, Cumin was escaping from the jurisdic- 
bion of the civil and military authorities, with 
whom at one time he was in bitter conflict, and 
making his residence the caput of a liberty of 
his own. 

Hugh de Lacy was not long under the cloud Hugh 
of the royal displeasure, and in the winter of again'' 
1181-2 he was again entrusted with the govern- Qovernor. 
nient of the country. This time a certain cleric, 
called Robert of Shrewsbury, was joined in com- 
mission with him as coadjutor and councillor, 
and a witness of his actions on the king's behalf. 
During the next three years he continued the 
work of castle-building, and we can trace the 
sites of his castles by the motes or mounds of 
earth that still remain at the places indicated 
in nearly every case. One of these was at 
Timahoe in Leix, marking an advance, which 
was perhaps not very permanent, in a hilly 
district in Queen's County. The land here had 
lately been given to Meiler Fitz Henry as a recom- 
pense for some land which he claimed about 
Kildare, but it was yet to be conquered. At 
the same time Hugh de Lacy gave his niece in 

^ Cumin gave to the prior and canons ' aream curie sue 
ad oificinas suas edificandas ' : Chartae, &c., p. 10. This 
probably included the old archiepiscopal residence. 

1226 II E 



marriage to Meiler/ but though some twenty- 
four years later we hear of Meiler's son, it would 
seem that he was not the offspring of this 
marriage, as Giraldus, in the so-called preface 
to his second edition of the Expugnatio, written 
about the year 1210, expressly says that Meiler 
had no legitimate issue.^ Other castles were 
built in the valley of the Barrow and in Hugh 
de Lacy's own lordship, especially in Westmeath, 
where the castles of Clonard, Killare,^ Delvin, 
and others were now erected. 
Finally But in the summer of 1184 Henry's inveterate 

seded, distrust of Hugh de Lacy, combined with his 
inordinate desire for the aggrandizement of 
the most worthless of his sons, led to Hugh's 
final supersession and to a new scheme for the 
government of Ireland. To this scheme, and 
to John's visit to Ireland in 1185 as Dominus 
Hiberniae, we shall recur in chapter xvi. 

Hugh de Lacy witnessed, as constable, John's 
Dublin Charter of 1185,* and was with John at 

1 Gir. Camb. v. 356. 

2 Ibid. V. 409. The writer of the Histoire de Guil- 
laume le Marechal says of Meiler (1. 14134), il n'aveit nul 
certein eir, adding niistakenly, Quer feme esposee n'out 

^ The castle of Killare [Cell-fair) was erected in 1184 : 
Ann. Ulster, Ann. Loch Ce. These annals also state 
that Art O'MelaghHn was killed treacherously by Dermot 
O'Brien at the instigation of the Foreigners, and that 
Melaghlin Beg took the kingship in his stead. 

4 Hist, and Mun. Docs, of Ireland (Gilbert), p. 49. 


Ardfinan,^ but he was probably one of those 
who, we are told, disgusted with the insolence 
of the new-comers and the turn which affairs 
had taken, kept silent in the background and 
awaited the issue of events.^ At any rate, after 
John's departure he was out of favour with 
the king. By one chronicler he is said to 
have disregarded the king's order to return,^ 
given possibly in consequence of some report 
from John. Indeed, Irish annals, not, how- 
ever, a good authority on such a point, state 
that John, on his return to England, com- 
plained that Hugh de Lacy had prevented the 
Irish kings from sending him either tribute or 
hostages. However this may have been, it is 
probable that he afforded the new government 
little or no assistance. In 1185, indeed, his 
lordship of Meath was invaded by the Cinel 
Owen under their chieftain, but they were 
repulsed by William le Petit, one of Hugh de 
Lucy's principal feudatories.* In July 1186, 
however, Hugh de Lacy's career was abruptly His 


closed. He had built a castle within the pre- ii86. 
cincts of an old Columban monastery at Durrow, 
near the borders of Westmeath (in the modern 

^ Black Book of Limerick (Mac Caffrey), p. 103. 

2 Gir. Camb. V. 391. 

3 William of Newburgh, vol. i, p. 240. 

* Gir. Camb. v. 386. Melaghlin, son of Murtough 
O'Loughlin, was slain by the foreigners, probably in this 
raid : Ann. Ulster, 1185. 

E 2 


King's County), and, according to the oldest 
account, came out to look at it, when a youth 
with the curious name, Gilla gan-inathair ^ 
O'Meyey, suddenly cut off his head with one 
blow of a battle-axe which he had concealed 
about his person, and head and body both fell 
into the castle-ditch. The murderer then fled 
to his foster-father O'Caharny, called an Sinnach 
or ' the Fox ', the chief of Teffia, at whose 
instigation the deed was done.^ 
His dis- When Henry heard the news that a certain 
Court. Irishman had cut off Hugh de Lacy's head he 
is said to have rejoiced thereat,^ for Hugh had 
in many ways displeased and disobeyed him. 
We have seen that Henry w^as angry with him 
for marrying Rory 0' Conor's daughter, and 
was jealous of his great power and popularity. 
It was even rumoured that he aimed at making 
himself an independent king. He was, indeed, 
probably regarded by the Irish, unfamiliar with 
feudal relationships, as a king, and some of the 
Irish annals speak of him as such.* John and 

^ Gilla gan-inathair, ' the lad without bowels,' a sobriquet 
perhaps alluding to the extreme sHmness which enabled 
him to outstrip his pursuers. ^ Ann. Loch Ce, 1186, 

^ William of Newburgh, vol. i, p. 240. 

4 Ann. Loch Ce, 1185 : ' For it was Hugh de Lacy that 
was King of Erinn when the son of the King of the Saxons 
came.' And again, ibid. 1186, when recording his death, 
' for he was King of Meath and Breffny and Uriel, and it 
was to him the tribute of Connaught was paid.' The Four 


his followers may have given support to the 
rumour to hide their own utter discomfiture. 
But it is very unlikely that Hugh had any 
aspirations inconsistent with his loyalty to 
Henry or his position as a tenant of the Crown. 

Hugh de Lacy was not a Geraldine. Never- His 
theless, of all the leaders portrayed in Gerald's misfor- 
pages, with the possible exception of Richard irXnd 
of Striguil, he appears to have been the best 
equipped for the work of transformation taken 
in hand, and to have had just the qualities 
required at that moment for ruling Ireland 
and bringing peace and prosperity to the land. 
A strong, provident man, who took the neces- 
sary steps to make Norman rule effective, and 
gradually to supplant the antiquated clan system 
by an organization more fitted to preserve peace 
and promote progress ; but one who at the same 
time did not despise the native Irish, but did 
his best to win their confidence and reconcile 
them to the new order of things. Like Strong- 
bow, he had married an Irish wife and thrown 
in his fortunes with Ireland. He had made 
enemies, no doubt, among the chieftains whose 
power he had curtailed, but he was popular 
among the people, and his very popularity had 
aroused the suspicions of the English king. So 
far as we can see, the battle-axe of O'Meyey 

Masters in each case alter the expression, but probably on 
their own authority. 



struck a bad blow for Ireland, and not only for 
the English colony, when it tumbled Hugh de 
Lacy's head into the castle-ditch at Durrow. 
His The subsequent history of Hugh de Lacy's 

remains is curious. In 1195 Matthew, Archbishop 
of Cashel and papal legate, and John Cumin, 
Archbishop of Dublin, removed the body of 
Hugh de Lacy from the Irish territory, probably 
at Durrow, where it had been buried, and 
solemnly interred it at the Cistercian monastery 
of Bective in Meath, but his head for some reason 
was either then or at some previous time 
deposited in the monastery of St. Thomas in 
Dublin.* A lengthened dispute arose between 
these two houses for the possession of the com- 
plete remains, which, after an appeal to the Pope, 
was finally settled in the year 1 205 by a conclave of 
archbishops, bishops, abbots, priors, and other dis- 
creet and venerable persons, in favour of the canons 
of St. Thomas.^ Hugh de Lacy, whatever his merits 
may have been, was not recognized as a saint, and 
it appears from further documents that the real 
dispute was not about his relics, but concerned 
certain lands which had been conferred along with 
his body upon the monastery of Bective.^ 

1 Grace's Annals, 1195; Annals, Laud MS., Chart. 
St. Mary's Abbey, Dublin, vol. ii, p. 307. 

2 Reg. St. Thomas's, Dublin, p. 348. 
2 Ibid., pp. 350, 352. The last document is wrongly 

dated 1240, or the bishop's name is \^Tongly given. Simon 
Rochford, Bishop of Meath, died in 1224. 



The principal steps by which the bishopric and 
the abbatial lands of Glendalough were absorbed 
in the see of Dublin appear to have been as 
follows : — 

In 1185 John 'son of the king', when in 
Ireland, purported to effect the union of the 
sees "pro raritate populi et 'paupertate ecclesie 
Duhlinensis} This grant clearly met with 
opposition and was inoperative. In 1192 John 
' earl of Mortain and lord of Ireland ', while 
confirming the abbacy of Glendalough and its 
lands to Abbot Thomas,^ again granted the 
bishopric to the Archbishop of Dublin, ' so that 
when the cathedral church should fall vacant 
the archbishop should take the bishopric into 
his hand until he should provide a pastor for it, 
and that the Bishop of Glendalough should be 
chaplain and vicar to the Archbishop of Dublin.' ' 
John also gave to the archbishop (Cumin) and 
his successors the half-cantred of the abbey- 
lands of Glendalough which was next to the 
archbishop's castle of Ballymore (now Ballymore 
Eustace),^ and the land of Coillacht in haroniam.^ 

1 Chartae Priv. et Immun., p. 4. Crede Midi, no. xxiv. 

2 Chartae, &c., p. 6. Crede Mihi, no. xxxii. 
^ Chartae, &e., p. 6. Crede Mihi, no. xH. 

4 Ibid., no. xxvi, . ^ Ibid., no. xxvii. 


Coillacht was a forest region which appears 
to have extended from the mountains about 
the upper basin of the river Doddagh to near 
Tallaght.^ Later, in the reign of Richard I, 
John appears to have granted the whole abbacy 
of Glendalough to the archbishop, as a grant 
by him to this effect was confirmed by Matthew 
O'Heyney, Archbishop of Cashel and papal 
legate, who invoked ' the wrath of Almighty 
God and of the blessed apostles Peter and Paul 
if any one should presume to assail this con- 
firmation '." Nevertheless, Pope Innocent III 
in 1199, by a Bull, took the church of SS. Peter 
and Paul at Glendalough, with all the abbey- 
lands (enumerating them), under his protection, 
adding a similar comminatory clause.^ Perhaps 
in consequence of the Pope's interference. King 
John in 1200 granted to Thomas, Abbot of 
Glendalough, for his life, forty carucates of the 
abbatial lands,^ In 1213 John granted to Henry, 
Archbishop of Dublin, both the bishopric and 
the abbey of Glendalough, saving to Abbot 
Thomas during his life half a cantred to hold 
of the archbishop.^ William Piro, the last 
recognized Bishop of Glendalough, died in 1214. 
Probably Abbot Thomas died about the same 
time. At any rate, in 1215, Innocent III, acting 
on the alleged intentions of Cardinal Papiro in 
1152, that the two sees should be united on 
the death of the then Bishop of Glendalough, 
confirmed the transference of the bishopric of 
Glendalough to the Archbishop of Dublin.^ The 
papal sanction to the absorption of Glendalough 
in the see of Dublin, which was confirmed in 

^ Liber Niger Alani, p. 259. 2 Chaxtae, &c., p. 10. 

3 Ibid., p. 11. 4 Rot. Chart., 2 John, p. 78 b. 

5 Ibid., 15 John, p. 194 b. ^ Chartae, &c., p. 15. 


1216 by Honorius III/ appears to have been 
obtained through the personal exertions of 
Archbishop Henry, who went on an embassy 
from King John to Kome,^ and who appears 
to have been armed by a testimonium from 
FeHx O'Ruadhan, Archbishop of Tuam, and 
his suffragans, as to the intentions of Cardinal 
Papiro. This document, which reads Hke a piece 
of special pleading, ends with the following 
remarkable statement : ' The church in the 
mountains (i.e. the cathedral of Glendalough) 
was held in great reverence from the earliest 
times on account of St. Keywvyn, who lived 
as hermit there, but for nearly forty years it has 
become so deserted and desolate as to be used 
as a den for robbers, and more homicides are 
committed there than in any part of Ireland.' ^ 
As part of the bargain with the Pope, a hos- 
pital for pilgrims to the shrine of St. James 
of Compostella, the patron saint of lepers, was 
founded by Archbishop Henry near the place 
of embarkation on the Stein at Dublin, and 
he endowed it partly out of the lands of the 
see of Glendalough.* The spot appears to be 
marked on Sir William Petty's map of the 
half -barony of Rathdown as ' Lowzy (i.e. Lazar) 
Hill '.^ Thus ended the ancient Celtic bishopric 
of Glendalough, eaten up by its more stalwart 
Dano-Norman rival. When the power of the 
latter waxed faint in the fourteenth and fifteenth 
centuries there was, however, an unofficial 
revival of Irish bishops at Glendalough. 

1 Chartae, &c., p. 16. 2 ibid., p. 18. 

3 Cal. Christ Church Deeds, no. 20. 

^ Chartae, &c., as above, p. 18. 

5 See Halliday's Scandinavian Dublin, map facing p. 151. 



At the time of Hugh de Lacy's death, in 1186, 
the lordship of Meath ' from the Shannon to the 
sea was full of castles and of Foreigners '.^ We 
can in general fix the sites of these castles by 
the motes which in nearly every case remain. 
There are upwards of sixty motes, big and little, 
within the lordship of Meath. They were not, 
however, all erected within Hugh de Lacy's 
lifetime, and we shall here notice only those 
which mark the centres of manors known to 
have been created by him. The principal castle Seignoriai 
and manor of the whole lordship was Trim, 
where, as already mentioned, the first mote- 
castle was destroyed in 1174. It was soon 
rebuilt, but the first regular stone castle — the 
keep of which is perhaps the massive twenty- 
sided structure still standing — appears not to 
have been erected until about 1220.^ 

Other seignoriai castles in East Meath were : 

1 Ann. Loch Ce, 1186. Giraldus, speaking of the year 
1181, says, ' Hactenus enim Media plurimum, Lagenia 
parum, fuerat incastellata ' : v. 355. 

2 Ware's Annals, and compare ante, vol. i, pp. 338-42. 



Ratoath, where Hugh de Lacy appears to have 
retained a seignorial manor. He gave the tithes 
of Ratoath and DunshaughUn, and a grange 
at the latter place, to the abbey of St. Thomas, 
Dubhn, before 1183.^ After the year 1196 
Walter de Lacy gave the land of Ratoath to his 
brother Hugh,^ who soon afterwards confirmed 
his father's grant of the church to the abbey 
of St. Thomas.^ In the middle of the village of 
Ratoath is a very fine mote, which has not, 
I think, been described. It must suffice here 
to say that it is about fifty feet high and very 
steep, with a circular flat area on top of about 
twenty paces in diameter. At the base is a 
shield-shaped bailey, and both mote and bailey 
are surrounded with deep fosses and wide 
ramparts in a typical Norman manner. The 
whole is a magnificent specimen of a Norman 
earthwork, and there can be little doubt that it 
represents the elder Hugh de Lacy's castle. 

Clonard. The castle here was erected in 
1182.^ In 1200 ' Clonard (i. e., probably, the new 

1 Reg. St. Thomas's, p. 280. Robert le Poer, who seems 
to have had the custody of Hugh de Lacy's lands after his 
death, confirmed tliis grant : ibid., p. 26. 

2 Gormanston Register, f. 188 dors. The parcels include 
' totam terram de Rathtowtht sicut melius et plenius 
eandem terram unquam tenui, et de incremento Treuthd ' 
(Trevet Grange). ^ Reg. St. Thomas's, p. 8. 

* Gir, Camb. v. 356, where ' Clunaret ' is the better read- 
ing ; Ir. Cluain-irdird. 


monastery) was burned by O'Keary to injure 
the English who were in it '.^ This was the site 
of the famous Celtic monastery of St. Finnian, 
which, however, appears not to have survived 
the repeated ravages of Norsemen and Irish. 
An Augustinian priory, dedicated to St. Peter, 
was founded here, probably by Hugh de Lacy. 
Even of this latter foundation nothing has been 
preserved except an octagonal Gothic font, and 
the lofty mote of Hugh de Lacy's castle is the 
most conspicuous object in the deserted place. 
Clonard, in the twelfth century, and probably 
up to its burning in the year 1200, was the seat 
of a bishopric, afterwards removed to Trim. 
Eugene, the bishop from 1174 to 1194, appears 
to have acted from the first with the Anglo- 
Norman settlers in furthering the interests of 
the Church,^ and in particular in endowing the 
abbey of St. Thomas, Dublin — to such an extent, 
indeed, as to impoverish the see of Meath and 
give rise to a dispute which was compromised 
in 1235.=^ 

Kells, the seat of a famous Columban 
monastery, marked still by its early stone- 
roofed church, its ecclesiastical round tower, and 

1 Four Masters, 1200. O'Keary {Ua Ciardha) was chief- 
tain of Carbury (Cairbre), a district separated from Clonard 
by the river Boyne. 

2 See, for instance, his precept enjoining the payment of 
tithes : Reg. St. Thomas's, Dublin, p. 259. 

3 Ibid., pp. 246-52. 


its beautiful crosses, was protected by Hugh de 
Lacy, and was probably the seat of a seignorial j 
manor. ' A castle was in process of erection at 
Kells ' as early as 1176, but in the same year, | 
consequent on the destruction of the castle of 
Slane, it was razed and left desolate through 
fear of the Cinel Owen.^ There is no further ' 
early mention of a castle at Kells. Hugh 
de Lacy granted to the canons of St. Mary 
at Kells a number of places with Irish names, 
presumably their former possessions,^ and he 
is said to have re-edified the abbey. Walter 
de Lacy, in the reign of Richard I, granted 
a charter to the burgesses of Kells, conferring 
on them 'the law of Bristol'.^ Hugh de Lacy 
gave Emlagh, to the north-east of Kells, to 
Thomas de Craville,^ but the barony of Kells 
does not appear to have been granted in one 
parcel, and we may perhaps conclude that 
the manor of Kells was retained in Hugh de 
Lacy's hands. 

Similarly in the case of Duleek. Hugh gave 
to Adam Dullard (whose brother was Pagan 
or Payn Dullard) certain lands which we may 
identify with Dollardstown and Painestown in 

1 Ann. Ulster, 1176. 

2 See this charter in Dugdale, Mon. Angl. vi. 1143. 

^ Chartae Priv. et Immun., p. 10. Walter retained 
mills in Kells : Cal. Docs. Irel., vol. i, no. 1909. 
4 Song, 11. 3166-73, and note. 


this barony,^ but there appears to have been no 
large grant made here. There was, however, 
a very early castle erected at Duleek. It was 
destroyed at the same time as Trim Castle, and 
afterwards restored.^ At Duleek Hugh de Lacy 
founded a monastery for canons regular, and 
made it a cell of his favoured abbey at Llanthony. 
In the same barony at Colp, near the mouth of 
the Boyne, he also subjected another foundation 
to the same abbey. Duleek appears as an 
important manor of Theobald de Verdun,^ who 
succeeded the de Lacys in a moiety of Meath, 
and it is probable that it was a seignorial manor 

Drogheda. Though the castle here does not 
appear to be mentioned before 1203, when John 
gave ' to Nicholas de Verdun the custody of the 
[castle of the] bridge of Drogheda, as it was 
in the king's hand and as Nicholas's father 
[Bertram de Verdun] held it ',* there can be 
little doubt that it was erected by Hugh de Lacy. 
The above entry shows that the castle was in 

1 Ibid., 11. 3164-5, and note. There is a terraced mote 
at DoUardstown. ' The land of Adam Dullart and Payn 
his brother ' belonged to the Hospitallers before 1212 : 
Papal Letters (Bliss), vol. i, p. 36. 

2 Gir. Camb. v. 313. 

3 In 1284 he was granted a yearly fair at his manor of 
Dyvelek ; Cal. Does. Irel., vol. ii, no. 2303. There was 
a mote at Duleek, but it has been nearly cleared away. 

* Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, no. 185. 


existence about the time of Hugh de Lacy's 
death, when Bertram de Verdun (who died on 
the crusade in 1192) was in Ireland. Besides, 
though the castle was retained as a royal castle 
when the other seignorial castles were restored 
to Walter de Lacy, compensation was paid to 
Walter and his successors, showing that it 
admittedly belonged originally to the de Lacys.^ 

The castle-site is marked by the ' Mill Mount ', 
a formidable mote commanding the bridge 
across the Boyne, and connected with the later 
town walls on the Meath side. So important 
a site could hardly have been neglected by 
Hugh de Lacy. 

In Westmeath Hugh de Lacy, in 1184, built 
a castle at Killare, within sight of the sacred 
hill of Usnech, near the spot where stood and 
still stands the ' stone of the divisions ', the 
' navel of Erin ', where in prehistoric times 
the five provinces met.^ This appears to have 
been at first the principal seat of the lordship 

1 For proof of this and a description of the site see my 
paper on ' Motes and Norman Castles in the County Louth ', 
Joum. R. S. A. I. 1908, pp. 246-50. 

2 Gir. Camb. v. 356 ; Ann. Ulster, 1184, where the place 
is called Cill Fair ; Four Masters, 1184 (Cill air). Giraldus, 
speaking of the five sons of Dela, says : ' Et eam (Hiberniam) 
vacuam invenientes, in quinque portiones aequales inter 
se diviserunt ; quarum capita in lapide quodam con- 
veniunt apud Mediam juxta castrum de Kilair ; qui lapis 
et umbehcus Hibemiae dicitur quasi in medio et meditulUo 
terrae positus ' (v. 144). 


n West Meath,^ but in 1187 the castle was 
iestroyed and its garrison slain by the Irish. ^ 
rhe castle does not appear to have been rebuilt, 
3ut the mote remains to mark the site. Lough 
5ewdy, or Ballymore Lough Sewdy, as it 
3ame to be called,^ was afterwards the principal 
5eignorial manor in West Meath. 

An early seignorial castle was erected at 
Fore (Ir. Fahhar, latinized Favoria and, by 
Siraldus, F over a) in West Meath, where there 
w^as an ancient monastery founded by St. Fechin. 
The castle was one of those seized by King John 
in 1210 and restored to Walter de Lacy in 1215. 
It probably owed its origin to Hugh de Lacy, 
who was in occupation of the place circa 1180.* 

1 Hugh de Lacy's charter to WiUiam le Petit provides 
that the service due should be performed at ELillare : 
' inde servicium unius militis pro quibuslibet xxx carucatas 
[sic\ terre predicte apud Killar faciendum ' ; see transcript, 
Song of Dermot, p. 310. 

2 Four Masters, 1187. 

^ It was restored to Walter de Lacy in 1215 ; C. D. I., 
vol. i, no. 612, where it is corruptly printed Loxhundy. 
The Irish is Loch Seimhdidhe, of which Lough Sewdy is 
a phonetic rendering. The place long remained an impor- 
tant seat of the de Lacys, and a stone castle was built 
at Ballymore, of which some remains exist. A peninsula, 
called an island, in the lake seems to have been originally 
a fort of the O'MelaghHns. This was probably the site of 
Hugh de Lacy's castle. Abandoned for the stone castle 
of Ballymore, it was long afterwards, in 1641 and again in 
1691, garrisoned and held as the strongest place in the 
neighbourhood. * Gir. Camb. v. 134, 354. 

1226 II F 


It appears to have been Hugh de Lacy, and 
not, as usually stated, his son Walter, who first 
gave to the monks of St. Taurin at Evreux the 
churches of Fore and the tithes, and St. Fechin's 
mill there, and the wood near the town for their 
habitation.^ There is a mote at Fore. 

Hugh de Lacy also retained in his own hand 
' the lake and vill of Dissert (i. e. Lough Ennell, 
south of Mullingar, and Dysart on its western 
shore) and one knight's fee around the said vill '. 
The place was excepted from Hugh de Lacy's 
grant to William le Petit, to be presently men- 
tioned. Malachi II, King of Ireland, lived at 
Dun na Sciath (a rath, still known by that 
name, or as ' Malachi's fort ', on the border of 
the lake in the parish of Dysart), and died at 
Cro Inis,^ a fortified island in the lake just 
opposite, and it is supposed that this was a seat 
of subsequent kings of Meath. There does not 
appear to have been a seignorial manor or early 
castle here, and it may be that Hugh de Lacy 
reserved it as a residence for the particular 
O'Melaghlin favoured at the time by him. 
The We now turn to Hugh de Lacy's principal 

Meath fcudatories. As in the case of the sub-infeuda- 
lands. ^"^ ^ion of Lcinstcr, our principal authority is the 
Song of Dermot. The Trouvere may have had 

^ Cal. Docs. France (Round), vol. i, p. 105, where grants 
to St. Taurin from Walter de Lacy are also calendared. 
2 Ann. Tigemach, Ann. Clonmacnois, 1022. 

2 Tyrel. 


document ^ before him containing a list of 
"ugh's grants. Certainly most of his state- 
lents can be verified from other sources, and 
one of them has been shown to be inaccurate. 

To Hugh T3rrel, who had been his custodian Hugi 
-J Trim, Hugh de Lacy gave Castleknock. 
} would seem, however, that this grant was 
lade by Hugh ' while he was the king's bailiff ', 
nd on behalf of the king. Certainly at a later 
me the three services due for Castleknock were 
aid to the Crown, and not to the lords of Meath.^ 
he site of the castle, a little to the west of 
hoenix Park, near Dublin, is well known. It is 
fine example of a ditched and ramparted mote, 
ith remains of a wall about seven feet thick 
[iclosing an oval space on the top. On one end 
I this oval, on a secondary mound, there are 
3mains of an octagonal tower. Hugh Tyrel and 
is successors were known as ' barons of Castle- 
nock '. The castle was more than once ordered 
y John and Henry III to be prostrated as 

danger to Dublin, but the owner, Richard 
'yrel, appears to have avoided compliance 
ith the order, and eventually, on giving his 

1 In 1. 3133 the writer expressly says solum Vescrit. 

2 Song, 11. 3132-3. The Irish name for the place 
as simply Cnucha, and this name probably referred 
) the natural hill which rises a little to the east of the 

^ Irish Exchequer Memoranda, temp. Ed. I, Eng. Hist. 
-ev. 1903, p. 502. 

p 2 


son as a hostage, was allowed to retain its 
Joceiin Navan and the land of Ardbraccan were 


Nangie. granted to Joceiin de Nangle ^ or de Angulo, as 
the name appears in Latin documents (i. e. of 
Angle in Pembrokeshire). Joceiin is said to 
have founded St. Mary's Abbey at Navan in the 
twelfth century, and the town grew up under 
the Nangles. Four centuries later we find a 
Nangle baron of Navan. ^ 

Gilbert To Jocclin's SOU, Gilbert, Hugh de Lacy 

Nangle. granted the barony of Morgallion.* His castle 
was at Nobber, a name which means ' the work ' 
(Ir. an obair), and was perhaps what the Irish 
called the novel kind of castle, perched on an 
artificial hillock of earth, erected there. Gilbert 
de Nangle was outlawed in 1196, and the castle 
and lands reverted to Walter de Lacy, who 
granted them to his brother Hugh.^ 

Richard Twenty knights' fees in the barony of Slane 
were granted to Richard le Fleming, who, as we 

le Flem 

1 Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, nos. 515, 844, 1047, 1139. 

2 Song, 11. 3144-7. There is a lofty mote at Navan 
formed out of a hillock of gravel, and a small one at 

3 ' The Bamet of Navan, his name Nangle, his hous at 
the Navan,' Hogan's Ireland in 1598, p. 95 ; and indeed 
in 1636, Inquis. Lageniae, Meath, 23 Car. I. 

* Song, 11. 3142-3. There is a remarkable mote at Nobber. 

5 Gormanston Register, f. 188 dors : ' totam terram de 
MackergaUnge . . . sicut eandem Gilbertus de Angulo . . . 


have seen, erected the mote at Slane near the 
site of the ancient monastery.^ In 1598 a 
Fleming was still Baron of Slane. ^ 

Twenty knights' fees in the barony of Skreen Adam de 
were granted to Adam de Feipo, as well as the ^^^^" 
fee of one knight in the crown lands at Santry, 
near Dublin.^ Hugh de Lacy built a castle for 
Adam de Feipo in Meath, presumably at Skreen,* 
where there is a mote in the grounds of the 
modern castle. A small town arose here. The 
Feipos were barons of Skreen up to the close 
of the fourteenth century, when an heiress 
carried the barony to the Marwards. The barony 
of Deece was granted to Hugh de Hose.^ His Hofe! 

1 Song, 11.3174-201. For Crandone we should probably 
restore Slan donat (as suggested by Mr. Round, Commune 
of London, p. 142). 

2 Hogan's Ireland in 1598. 

3 Song, 11. 3156-7. For Santry, see Chart. St. Mary's, 
Dublin, ii. 95, and Exchequer Memoranda, Eng. Hist. 
Rev. 1903, p. 502. 

4 Gir. Camb. v. 356. Adam speaks of the chapel of 
St. Nicholas ' que sita est in castello meo juxta Scrinium ' : 
Chart. St. Mary's, Dubhn, ii. 21. 

5 Song of Dermot, 11. 3162-3 ; Ware, quoting from Hugh 
de Lacy's charter or a transcript thereof, says that Hugh 
gave to Hose or Hussy ' all the land del Dies which Shaclin 
held'. This was clearly Mac Gilla Seachlainn, lord of 
Southern Breagh : Topogr. Poems, p. 12. The last chieftain 
of this name mentioned in the Four Masters was slain by 
Tigheaman O'Rourke in 1171. Cf. a charter from John 
de Hereford (to whom Hugh de Hose seems to have given 
lands in the barony) : Reg. St. Thomas's, Dublin, p. 123. 


castle at Galtrim (where the mote remains) was 
one of those abandoned after the destruction 
of Slane Castle in 1176.^ The Husseys, as the 
name came to be spelled, were still barons of 
William Galtrim in 1598.^ The barony of Lime was 


Messet. granted to William de Muset (Messet, Misset) ; ^ 
and a district in the barony of Lower Kells, 
including Emlagh, to Thomas de Cravile.* 
In West Meath the barony of Magheradernon 

William was granted to William le Petit.^ His chief 
manor was at Mullingar, where the original 
mote and later stone castle of the Petits were 
finally removed in the last century to make way 
for a jail.® The barony was long known as 
' Petit' s Barony ', and as late as 1596 was largely 

1 Ann. Ulster, 1176. 

2 Hogan's Ireland in 1598, p. 95 : ' The bamet of Galtrim 
his name Hussy, his Hous Galtrim.' 

3 Song of Dermot, 1. 3159 ; cf . Harris's Ware, p. 193. The 
cafut baroniae was probably Athboy. In 1213 Peter Messet, 
' baro de Luyn juxta Trym,' died, and the inheritance 
passed to his three daughters, of whom the eldest 
married Lord de Vemaill, the second Talbot, the third 
Loundres : Annals Laud MS., Chart. St. Mary's, Dublin, 
vol. ii, p. 312. 

* Song of Dermot, 11. 3166-73, where Eymlath began is 
Emlagh of St. Becan, and the other places mentioned are 
in the barony of Moygoish, co. Westmeath. 

5 Song of Dermot, 11. 3134-7. 

6 Eng. Hist. Review, 1907, p. 237 ; and cf. Inquis. 
Lageniae, Westmeath, 6 Jac. I, where Thomas Pettit was 
found seised of the manor of Mullingar, including a water- 
mill called ' the moate mylle ' in the town. 


inhabited by Petits.^ William le Petit was also 
given Rathkenny in Meath, and some lands in the 
barony of Shrule, County Longford, and 'Chastel- 
brec ', the position of which is uncertain.^ 

The barony of Delvin was granted to Gilbert Gilbert 


de Nungent (Nugent), ' which the O'Finelans Nugent. 
held in the time of the Irish,' for the service 
of five knights.^ Gilbert de Nugent is said to 
have married a sister of Hugh de Lacy, and 
Hugh built a castle for him,* the mote of which 
remains at Castletown Delvin, close to the later 

To Richard de Capella, frater germanus of 

1 Perambulation of the Pale, Car. Cal. 1596, p. 192. 

2 In 1229 Nicholas le Petit was granted a market at ' his 
manor of Ratkenny ', a fair at ' his manor of Dunboyny ', 
and a free warren ' in the demesne of his manor of Ad- 
molinger ' : CD. I., vol. i, no. 1673. Was Castlebrack 
a name give to William's castle at Dunboyne ? 

^ Song of Dermot, 1. 3158. The charter is transcribed 
from Sir William Betham's Collections in Butler's Trim, 
p. 252, and is translated from an old copy in the Clarendon 
Collection in Lynch's Legal Institutions, p. 150. The 
original was seen by Ware. CeUach O'Findallan, Lord 
of Delbna Mor, is mentioned as assisting the foreigners of 
Dubhn in killing Muhony O'Keary, lord of Carbury. Ann. 
Tigemach, Four Masters, 1174. 

^ Gir. Camb. v. 356 ; and Lodge, Westmeath. 

5 The first stone castle at Delvin was probably built 
after 1220, when a year's service from the land of Meath 
was ordered to be given to Richard de Tuit ' to enable him 
to fortify (firmare) a castle in Delven ' : Cal. Docs. Ireland, 
vol. i, nos. 884, 970. This Richard de Tuit was, jure uxor is, 
third baron of Delvin. 



Richard Gilbert de Nugent, lands were also given by 

Capeila. Hugh de Lacy, but their position is not 
stated.^ He succeeded to his brother as second 
baron of Delvin, and his daughter and heiress 
carried the barony to the Tuites for many 

Robert de E-ATHWIRE (Ir. Bath-Guaire), in the barony 

^^^' of Farbill, was granted to Robert de Lacy, and 

Hugh is said to have built a castle for him there.^ 

The mote remains with considerable foundations 

of a stone castle in the bailey. 

KiLBixY, near Lough Iron, in the barony of 

Geoffrey Moygoish, was given to Geoffrey de Costentin, 
andacastle was erected here in 1192.* The mote 
remains, but nothing else, except the name 
' Burgage lands ', to testify to the ancient im- 
portance of the place. Near by, Geoffrey de 

1 Song of Dermot, 11. 3152-3. 

2 Burke's Peerage, ' Marquis of Westmeath.' 
2 Song of Dermot, 11. 3150-1 and note. Rathwire and 

Kilbixy were plundered and burned by Mageoghegan in 
1450 (Four Masters). 

4 Song of Dermot, 11. 3154-5, where Kelberi and Rath 
eimarthi are corruptions for Kilbixi and Rathconarti, the 
latter being the ancient name of the barony now called 
Rathconrath. The castle is called caislen Cille Big sigh e 
(Ann. Loch Ce, 1192), i.e. the church of St. Bigseach. 
Walter de Lacy, in what was probably a confirmatory 
charter, granted to Geoffrey de Costentin ' five knights' 
fees in the theof of Kilbixi with a castle and fifteen knights' 
fees in the land of Conemake next adjoining to the said 
castle, beyond the water of Ethne (the river Inny) by the 
service of four knights ' : Harris's Ware, Antiq., p. 193. 


Costentin founded a priory of canons regular 
at Tristernagh.^ 

The cantred of Ardnurcher was given to Meiier 
Meiler Fitz Henry.^ It is now a parish, more Henry, 
commonly known as ' Horseleap ', in the barony 
of Moycashel. A castle was erected here in 1 192.^ 
Its site is well known. As in some other cases, 
the end of a natural ridge was selected, and this 
was cut off from the rest of the ridge by a double 
trench. An oblong mote with flat top, twenty- 
five by twelve paces, was formed. The summit 
is about thirty feet above the ditch at the upper 
side. There is a small raised bailey at one side, 
defended by a ditch. Two pieces of a massive 
wall seem to indicate where a bridge crossed 
this ditch to the bailey. 

To Richard de Tuit was given ' a rich feoff- Richard 
ment ' including a district about Granard, in 
County Longford.* Here, in 1199, he erected a 

^ The foundation charter is given in Dugdale's Mon. Angl. 
(1830), vol. vi, p. 1147. 

2 Song of Dermot, U. 3138-41. 

3 Caislen Aiha an Urchair. Ann. Loch Ce, 1192. The 
castle of Kilbixy, where the mote is also of an oblong shape, 
was erected in the same year. 

* Song of Dermot, 11. 3148-9. It is probable that Richard 
de Tuit was also given lands in a more settled district, 
perhaps at Tuitestown (5 miles to the north-west of Mul- 
lingar) and at Sonnagh (3 miles further), where we afterwards 
find Tuits. In several cases Hugh de Lacy gave lands on 
the marches of his lordship as well as lands nearer the centre 
to the same feoffee. 


castle as a stronghold against O'Reilly in South 
Breifny. A high mote is to be seen here with 
traces of stone buildings on the top. Near 
Granard, in 1210, Richard de Tuit founded the 
Cistercian monastery of Larha, now Abbeylara, 
and in the same year his castle was visited by 
King John. 

It would seem probable, then, that in Hugh de 
Lacy's lifetime little or no attempt was made to 
occupy the three western baronies of Westmeath, 
nor those parts of the ancient kingdom of Meath 
which are now included in King's County and 
Longford. Even those districts which were 
parcelled out among the barons were not all 
occupied and turned to profit at once. Hugh 
de Lacy was himself building the castle of 
Durrow when he was murdered in 1186, and the 
border castles of Granard, Kilbixy, and Ardnur- 
cher were not erected until the last decade in the 
century. Indeed, in several districts the Irish 
chieftains were never entirely dispossessed. The 
O'Melaghlins were styled kings of Meath for 
many generations, but they became confined to 
the barony of Clonlonan. The Mageoghegans 
in Moycashel, the O'MoUoys in Fircall, the 
O'Caharneys in Kilcoursy, the MacCoghlans in 
Garrycastle, the O'Farrells in Annaly, and other 
ruling families, retained to the last their posi- 
tions as chieftains of their respective tribes. 



In 1 184, while Hugh de Lacy was stiU justiciar, Henry 
King Henry prepared to carry out a design toTenT 
which he had long meditated. At the Council of t"^"^^^ 
Oxford in 1177 he had, as we have seen, appointed 
his youngest son, John, ' Lord of Ireland,' and 
made the new grantees of lands there swear 
fealty and do homage to John as well as to 
himself. But John was too young to undertake 
the government, being then only in his tenth 
year. Now, in the summer of 1184, Henry sent 
John Cumin, the new archbishop, to Ireland to 
prepare for the coming of the prince. He also 
once more superseded Hugh de Lacy, and in 
September sent Philip of Worcester in his place Piiilipof 
with forty men-at-arms.* Philip is described as madepro- 
a sumptuous, open-handed man, and a brave ^"^'^*"r- 

1 Gir. Camb. v. 359. Up to this moment Henry had 
vainly endeavoured to persuade his son Richard to give up 
Aquitaine to John : Gesta Hen. i. 311, 319. Gerald says, 
' revocato Hugone de Laci,' but if Hugh went to the king 
he was back in Ireland next year, when he witnessed some 
of John's charters as constable. 


soldier. We shall meet with a Philip of Worces- 
ter, presumably the same man, ten years later 
in Desmond. At this time not much is recorded 
of him. He revoked some grants of lands 
which had been improperly alienated by Hugh 
de Lacy in the north of the present county of 
Dublin, and restored the lands to their original 
purpose as mensal lands of the viceroy.^ By his 
charter Hugh had power to grant fiefs in the 
neighbourhood of Dublin, but only while he 
was the king's bailiff, and to enable him to per- 
form the king's service in Dublin. In March 11 85 
Expedi- Philip of Worcester headed an expedition to 
Armagli. Armagh, where he exacted a large tribute from 
the clergy. Hugh Tjnrell, who accompanied 
him, carried off a large cauldron from the clergy, 
and brought it as far as the town of Louth. 
Here a fire broke out in the house in which he 
lodged, and the two horses which had drawn the 
boiler were burnt, and a great part of the town 
also. Frightened at this judgement, Hugh Tyrell 

1 ' Terras quas Hugo de Laci alienaverat, terrain videlicet 
Ocadhesi, et alias quam plures, ad regiam mensam cum omni 
solicitudine revocavit ' : Gir. Camb. v. 359-60. The ' terra 
Ocadhesi ' (O'Casey) was equivalent to the barony of Bal- 
rothery West. Hugh seems to have granted all the eccle- 
siastical rights over this district to the Prior of Llanthony ; 
see note by Bishop Reeves to Topogr. Poems, p. v, and Crede 
Mihi, Ixiv. Of. too, as to the tithes of Lusk in Balrothery 
East, Chart. St. Mary's, Dubhn, i. 173. This deed was 
attested by ' Geroldus archidiaconus de Sancto David ' and 
must be dated 1185-6. 


restored the cauldron.^ The stage in the evolu- 
tion of morals when even men of light and 
leading did not scruple to pilfer a convent of 
monks was coincident with the stage in the 
evolution of reason when the same men were 
most subject to the influence of imaginary signs 
of divine wrath. 

On Mid-Lent Sunday, 1185, Henry at Windsor 
knighted his son John, and sent him to govern John 
his lordship of Ireland.2 He travelled by the l^Zn± 
coast -road of South Wales to Pembroke, where 
a numerous fleet had assembled in Milford Haven 
to transport him and his army. He was accom- 
panied to this point by Ranulf de Glanville, 
Justiciar of England, who, in 1182, or perhaps 
a little earlier, had been appointed his tutor and 
guardian.^ A favourable wind suddenly sprang 
up from the east, which might have been con- 
sidered a good omen, but by taking advantage 
of it John had to omit the usual visit to the 
shrine of St. David — a sinister sign. He sailed 

^ Gir. Camb. v. 132, 360. The former passage indicates 
that a quarrel broke out within the year between Hugh de 
Lacy and Hugh Tyrell which caused great disturbance. 
The Annals of Ulster and Loch Ce, 1185, record that Philip 
of Worcester, accompanied by the Foreigners of Erin, re- 
mained at Armagh for six days in the middle of Lent. 
Whatever the object of the expedition, it does not appear 
to have been a regular raid. More probably it was an 
attempt to interfere in the election to the primacy, which 
took place in this year. 

2 Gesta Hen. i. 336. 3 ibi^j. i. 305. 


on the evening of April 24, and arrived at noon 
next day in Waterford. He had with him about 
300 knights and a large force of horse-soldiers 
and archers. Among those in the prince's ship 
was Gerald de Barry, the historian, who had 
been specially sent by the king to attend his 
son.^ This was Gerald's second visit to the 
island, and, as before, he employed his time 
well in collecting materials for his Irish works. 
Among the officers of John's household who 
came with him to Ireland were Bertram de 
Verdun, his seneschal, William de Wendeval, 
his dapifer, and Alard Fitz WilUam, his chamber- 
lain. Others who witnessed his charters were 
Hugh de Lacy, constable, Philip of Worcester, 
Gilbert Pipard, and Theobald Walter. It is 
probable that the two last also came over with 

Of the new-comers Theobald Walter, Philip of 
Worcester, Bertram de Verdun, and Gilbert (or 
perhaps his brother Roger) Pipard received from 
John about this time large grants of land, and 
Theobald became founders of great Anglo-Irish families. 
The most illustrious of these, and one conspicuous 
throughout the whole subsequent history of 
Ireland, was that of the Butlers, descended from 
Theobald Walter. He was son and eventual heir 
of Hervey Walter of Amounderness, in Lanca- 
shire. His elder brother, Hubert, afterwards 
1 Gir. Camb. v. 380-1. 


Archbishop of Canterbury, was at this time one 
of the king's justices. Ranulf de Glanville, Chief 
Justiciar of England, was his uncle by marriage, 
and the two brothers appear to have been reared 
in Ranulf's household, and to Ranulf's influence 
with John should probably be ascribed the favour 
shown to Theobald at this time.-^ In spite of 
statements to the contrary, it is probable that 
Theobald came to Ireland for the first time with 
John, and that it was John who gave him the 
office and emoluments of chief butler. 

John's expedition to Ireland was a disastrous 
failure. So much is clear. Unfortunately, 
Gerald de Barry, who had such ample oppor- 
tunities of knowing the facts, tells us little in 
detail concerning the expedition, though he indi- 
cates clearly enough in general terms the chief 

^ That Hubert and probably Theobald were brought up 
by their aunt and Ranulf de Glanville appears from Hubert's 
charter to the Praemonstratensian House at West Dere- 
ham : Dugdale, Mon. Angl. vi, p. 899 ; and of. Norgate's 
Angevin Kings, ii. 332, note. Theobald's relations are 
indicated in his foundation charter to the Cistercian house 
at Arklow (where he also held a fief from John, perhaps 
granted at this time) : Dugdale, Mon. Angl. vi. 1128. His 
mother was Matilda de Valognes, and his second wife, 
mother of Theobald Walter II, was Matilda de Vavasor : 
Rot. Pat., 9 John, p. 74 b. By a former wife he had 
a daughter, Beatrice, who married (1) Thomas of Hereford 
and (2) Hugh Purcell, baron of Loughmoe; Reg. St. Thomas's, 
Dublin. Another daughter married Gerald de Prender- 
gast : Inquis. P.M., 36 Hen. III. 


Insolent causes of its failure. At Waterford, immedi- 
ment of ately on John's arrival, the leading Irishmen of 
princes ^^® neighbourhood, who had hitherto been loyal 
to the English and had lived peaceably, came to 
welcome the king's son as their lord and to give 
him the kiss of peace. But John's Norman 
retinue treated them with derision, some even 
rudely pulling their long beards in ridicule of the 
alien fashion. This irresponsible levity had its 
natural effect. The Irishmen, deeply incensed, 
betook themselves and their families to Donnell 
O'Brien, and disclosed to him and to Dermot 
Mc Carthy, and even to Rory 0' Conor, the treat- 
ment they had received, adding that the king's 
son was a mere stripling surrounded and coun- 
selled by striplings like himself, and that from 
such a source there was no prospect for Irishmen 
of good government, or even of security. Influ- 
enced by these reports, these three chief kings 
of the south and west of Ireland, who, we are 
told, were prepared to wait upon John and offer 
him their submission as they had previously 
done to Henry, were induced to take a very 
different course. Laying aside for the moment 
their interminable quarrels, which had hitherto 
given opportunity to the advance of the 
foreigners, they formed a league together, and 
unanimously determined to defend with their 
lives their ancient liberties. This example was 
followed by the other native chieftains, who all 


held aloof from John and his giddy court.^ ' We 
speak what we do know and testify what we 
have seen,' says Gerald solemnly, and we can 
believe him. A proud and sensitive people never 
willingly submits to the rule of a master, how- 
ever mighty, who despises them. 

But of course this rude plucking of the beards 
was only a symbol of that want of consideration 
for the native Irish which exhibited itself in 
more harmful ways. Continuing with the causes 
of the failure of the expedition, Gerald says : F^endly 

^ "^ Irisbmen 

' Contrary to our promises, we took away the deprived 
lands of our own Irishmen — those who from the lands, 
first coming of Fitz Stephen and the earl had 
faithfully stood by us — and gave them to our 
new-comers. These Irishmen then went over to 
the enemy and became spies and guides for them 
instead of for us, having all the more power to 
injure us because of their former familiarity with 
our ways.' ^ 

It is to be regretted that Gerald was not more 
explicit, but a careful consideration of John's 
acts in Ireland at this time, so far as they are 
known, tends to confirm and further elucidate 
this general statement. Almost the only military John's 
measure known to have been taken by John g^^^" 
was the erection of castles at Tibberaghny, policy. 
Ardfinan, and Lismore.^ Tibberaghny is on the 

1 Gir. Camb. v. 389. 2 ibid., p. 390. 

^ Ibid. V. 386. The erection of castles at Tipraid 

1226 n G 


borders of Ossory, north of the Suir and east 
of Carrick. Ardfinan and Lis more are near the 
frontiers of the territory known as the Decies. 
Motes remain at Tibberaghny and Lismore, 
probably indicating the exact positions of John's 
castles. Ardfinan was probably a ' promontory 
castle ', situated on a precipitous rock, where 
the remains of a later, but still early, castle 
stand, commanding a ford over the Suir. The 
castles seem to have been erected with a view 
to holding the Decies, and as bases for an advance 
into parts of Munster not yet occupied. The 
Decies, though already regarded as crown lands 
— at least from the Blackwater beyond Lismore 
eastwards — had probably not yet been com- 
pletely settled by the Normans. Melaghlin 
O'Faelain, the native prince, whose life had been 
spared at the taking of Waterf ord, was one of the 
first to submit to Henry on his arrival, and ever 
since he seems to have been true to his oath 
of fealty, and to have lived peaceably. It is 
probable that he was left undisturbed in part, 
at any rate, of his territory. But now it appears 
that he was one of those whom John's retinue 
treated disrespectfully, and who complained to 

Fachtna and Ard Finain is mentioned in the Annals 
of Loch Ce, 1185. Ardfinan as well as Lismore was 
within the territory of the Deisi, which may be regarded 
as coterminous with the dioceses of Waterf ord and 


Donnell O'Brien and the princes of Munster.^ 
We may therefore infer that his territory was 
confiscated at this time, and that he was 
one of those to whom Gerald alludes when 
saying that John took away lands from faithful 
Irishmen and gave them to new-comers. This 
presumably was John's immediate answer to the 
disaffection which his inconsiderate conduct had 

But further, it seems clear that, as a reply to 
the opposition shown by the princes of Munster, 
a reckless immature scheme was adopted for Scheme 
annexing the whole of the eastern part of annexing 
Munster, where hitherto the native princes had ^^"^°"'^- 
been left undisturbed by the adventurers in 
Ck)rk. From the Irish annals, as well as from the 
brief statements of Giraldus, we learn that out 
of his newly-erected castles John sent plundering 
parties into Munster. On two occasions, once 
in a neighbouring wood and once when taking 
a prey in the direction of Limerick, part of the 
garrison of Ardfinan was cut off by Donnell 
O'Brien, whose forces, however, suffered a defeat 
at Tibberaghny, in which two of the petty 
chieftains of Thomond fell.^ Before the year 

1 O'Faelain is expressly named in the Annals of Inisf alien 
(DubUn MS.). 

2 Gir. Camb. v. 386 ; Ann. Loch Ce, Four Masters, 1185. 
Gerald mentions that an Irish noble named Oggravus 
was slain with many others at Tibberaghny. He was 
clearly Ruaidhri O'Gradha (O'Grady), who with Ruaidhri 





tions in 

was out Dermot McCarthy and several others 
were slain by the men of Cork and the followers 
of Theobald Walter on the occasion of a parley 
near Cork.^ 

It is clear, however, that no general league to 
take common action against the invaders can 
have been formed at this time between the 
Kings of Connaught and Munster, such as might 
perhaps be inferred from Gerald's language. 
The Irish annals state that in this year Rory 
O'Conor ' came from his pilgrimage ', i.e. came 
out of the monastery of Cong, to which he had 
retired two years previously, when he left the 
reins of government in the hands of his son, 
Conor Maenmoy. Aided by Donnell O'Brien and 
the English of Cork, he destroyed the west of 
Connaught, both church and territory, in the 
endeavour to recover his kingdom from his son. 

O'Conaing ' was slain by the Foreigners in the slaughter of 
Tipraid Fachtna ' : Ann. Loch Ce. These annals also state 
that * the foster-brother of the son of the king of the Saxons ' 
was slain in an engagement with Donnell O'Brien. Who 
was this foster-brother ? In 1182-3 John was reared in 
Ranulf de Glanville's household, and Ranulf's sons would 
be John's foster-brothers. John's grant of Ormond was 
made to Ranulf de Glanville and Theobald Walter jointly. 
Ranulf, the justiciar, may have accepted this speculative 
grant for one of his sons • and if we suppose that he sent 
this son to join Theobald in his venture, and that he was 
John's foster-brother slain by O'Brien, the hypothesis 
would seem to fulfil the conditions. 

^ Gir. Camb, v. 386 ; Ann. Loch Ce, Four Masters, 1185. 


A temporary peace was patched up between 
father and son, on the basis of a division of 
Connaught. This would of course involve the 
withdrawal of Donnell O'Brien from Connaught, 
and is probably the peace to which Gerald 
alludes. Later on in the year, however, Conor 
Maenmoy's son, Cathal Carrach, plundered and 
burned Killaloe in retaliation for the churches 
which the men of Munster had burned, and 
Thomond was pillaged by Conor Maenmoy at 
the head of some English mercenaries. These 
latter then came as far as Koscommon with 
Conor, ' who gave them 3,000 cows as wages.' 
Finally Conor Maenmoy assumed the entire 
kingship,^ and next year expelled his father 
Rory. The league, then, must have consisted 
merely in a common resolve not to do homage 
or renew the oath of fealty to John. The peace, 
however, set free Donnell O'Brien, with whom 
Grerald's friends in Cork had probably been 

1 In the Annals of Loch Ce these entries are placed before, 
and in the Four Masters after, the entry as to John's visit 
to Ireland. Probably Rory agreed to the peace when 
Donnell O'Brien had to withdraw to meet the aggression 
of the garrisons of Ardfinan and Tibberaghny. R-obably, 
too, the mercenaries, whom we hear of for the first time 
in Connaught, were deserters from John's army. In the 
Gesta Hen. (i. 339) it is said of John's army, 'Maxima 
pars equitum et peditum qui cum eo venerant ab eo 
recesserunt et ad Hibernenses contra eum pugnaturos 


acting, and enabled him to concentrate the Irish 
forces of Munster against John's aggression. 

But we have more certain evidence of John's 
intentions regarding Munster than is afforded 
by these encounters with Donnell O'Brien. 
John's John's grant to Theobald Walter of the large 
Theobald district afterwards known collectively as Ormond 
Walter. ^^ ji^g^ Munstcr, was tested at Waterford, 
and must be referred to this year. By it 
the borough of Killaloe and five and a half 
cantreds in ' the land of Limerick ' were granted 
to Theobald and his uncle by marriage, Ranulf 
de Glanville, Chief Justiciar of England, for the 
service of twenty-two knights.^ These cantreds 
appear to have been mentioned by name in the 
original deed, and the names are repeated in an 
agreement made between William de Braose and 
Theobald Walter in 1201 touching the lands of 
the latter, to which we shall have to recur. ^ They 
included the south-western extension of the 
present King's County and the whole of North 
Tipperary,with a portion of the County Limerick. 
At the time this was a speculative grant of lands 
not yet acquired, but before the close of the 

1 See Carte's Life of Ormond (ed. 1851), Introd., p. xlv. 
In Carte's time the original deed was at Kilkenny. Ranulf 
de Glanville, the justiciar, remained in that office up 
to 1189. He went on the crusade and died at the siege 
of Acre in 1190: Norgate, Angevin Kings, ii. 279. It is 
highly improbable that he ever came to Ireland. 

2 Facsimiles Nat. MSS. of Ireland, vol. ii, no. Ixvii. 


reign of Richard I, at any rate, Theobald seems 
to have been firmly seated in his new posses- 
sions.^ It may be conjectured that a similar 
speculative grant in Southern Tipperary was 
made at this time to Phihp of Worcester, and 
was the origin of the claims which, as we shall 
see, he made a few years later to lands in this 

Of John's personal movements in Ireland at John's 
this time little is known. A few points are, ments 
however, fixed by his charters, which indicate charters'^ 
that he followed pretty closely his father's 
route. His grant to Theobald Walter was, as 
we have seen, tested at Waterford. At Lismore, 
where he built a castle, he granted a charter 
to the Cistercian monastery de Valle Salutis at 
Baltinglas, confirming to the monks the lands 
which thejT" had of the gift of Dermot Mc Mur- 
rough before the coming to Ireland of Earl 
Kichard.^ At Ardfinan, where he built another 
castle, he made a grant of four ploughlands 

1 Theobald's charter to the Cistercian monastery of 
Wodeny (Irish, Uaithne, variously anghcized Wetheny, 
Abbey Owney, Abington, &c.) was made in the reign of 
Richard I, circa 1197 : Chartae, &c., p. II, and cf. Carte's 
Life of Ormond, Introd., p. xlii. His principal seat seems 
to have been at Nenagh, near which he founded a priory 
of St. John Baptist circa 1200. 

2 Philip of Worcester had a castle at the mote of Knock- 
graffon probably from 1192 : Journ. R. S. A. I. xxxix (1909), 
p. 275. 3 Cal. Pat. Rolls, anno 1337, p. 402. 


near Limerick to the cathedral church there.^ 
Perhaps this was to ingratiate himself with the 
clergy there, in view of his hostihties with 
Donnell O'Brien. At Tibberaghny, where he 
also built a castle, he granted a charter of con- 
firmation to the new Cistercian house founded 
by Hervey de Montmorency at Dunbrody, and 
gave it a letter of protection.^ At Kildare he 
confirmed his father's charter granting Dublin 
to the men of Bristol.^ Here he also confirmed 
Wilham, son of Maurice Fitz Gerald, in his 
barony of Naas, and probably at the same time 
confirmed William's grant to his brother Gerald 
(ancestor of the earls of Leinster) of lands about 
Maynooth and Rathmore.* At Dublin, where 
he probably stayed most of his time, he granted 
to John Cumin, Archbishop of Dublin, and 
his successors the bishopric of Glendalough,^ 
but this attempted union of the sees was for 
the time ineffectual. Also to the abbey of 

1 Black Book of Limerick (MacCaffrey, p. 103). The 
editor strangely fails to date this charter, which is the 
oldest in the book. 

2 Chart. St. Mary's, DubUn, ii. 166, 168. 

3 Hist, and Mun. Docs. Ireland (J. T. Gilbert), p. 49. 

* Chartae Priv. et Immun., p. 5. See too, Gormanston 
Register, f . 190 dors. One of the witnesses was Reimundus 
filius Willelmi. For John's grant to Gerald, son of Maurice 
Fitz Gerald, see Red Book of Kildare, H. M. C., 9th Rep., 
App., p. 265 ; and Facsimiles Nat. MSS. Ireland, vol. iii, 
pi. Ix. ^ Chartae, &c., p. 4, and Crede Mihi, p. 5. 


St. Thomas a carucate of land at Wicklow.^ 
Incidentally we learn that he made several 
grants of valuable plots of land and messuages 
outside the western gate of Dublin to members 
of his household and others.^ Moreover, to this 
time should probably be referred the exten- 
sive Pipard and de Verdun grants in the present 
county of Louth. To these we shall recur 
in the next chapter. 

John returned to England on December 17,^ 
having been in Ireland for nearly eight months. Results of 

Ills Visit. 

In this brief period he had driven the Irish into 
open opposition, alienated the sympathy of the 
Anglo-Norman colony, dissipated the treasure 
entrusted to him, and frittered away his army 
to no purpose. He had shown no capacity either 
to govern with prudence or to fight with success. 

1 Ibid., p. 5 ; cf. Reg. St. Thomas's, DubHn, p. 166. 

2 The forta occidentalis itself was given by the citizens at 
John's request to Henry Mausanure, one of John's men : 
Hist, and Mun. Does. (Gilbert), p. 56. To William de 
Wendewal, his dapifer, John gave a messuage between the 
church of St. Thomas and the curia of Bertram de Verdun, 
also very probably the gift of John at this time : Reg. 
St. Thomas's, Dublin, p. 417. To PhiMp of Worcester he 
gave land in front of the gate of the abbey of St. Thomas, 
ibid., p. 407. To Henry Tirel land near Kilmainham, 
ibid., pp. 383, 392. John had already provided for his 
chamberlain, Alard Fitz WiUiam, by a grant of lands near 
Waterford and ' entertainment ' at various houses, ' by the 
service of six pair of lambskin gloves and one thabur ' : 
Lynch's Legal Institutions, p. 93. 

* Ralph de Diceto, ii. 39. 


causes of 

Gerald, whose words, from the point of view of 
the invaders, are full of wisdom and good sense, 
explains in general terms, though clearly enough, 
the causes of John's failure to quell the storm 
which his contemptuous behaviour and reckless 
grants had stirred up. 

The custody of the maritime towns and castles 
(i. e. principally, Dublin, Waterford, and Wex- 
ford, and perhaps Cork), with the adjacent lands 
and tributes, was given to men who, instead 
of using the revenue for the public good and 
the detriment of the enemy, squandered it in 
excessive eating and drinking. Then, though 
the country was not half subdued, both the 
civil and the military command was given into 
the hands of carpet knights, who were more 
intent on spoiling good citizens than in attacking 
the foe — men who, reversing the politic maxim 
of the ancient Romans, oppressed those who had 
submitted while leaving the enemy unscathed. 
So that nothing was done, either by making 
incursions into the enemy's country, or by the 
erection of numerous castles ^ throughout the 
land, or by clearing the ' bad passes ' through 
the woods, to bring about a more settled state 
of things. The bands of mercenaries were kept 
within the seaport towns, and, imitating their 
captains, gave themselves up to wine and 
women, so that the march lands were left 
^ ' Crebra castrorum constructione.' 


undefended, and the intermediate villages and 
fortified posts were abandoned to the fire and 
sword of the enemy. Meanwhile the old soldiery, 
feeling themselves, in the growing insolence of 
the new-comers, despised and out of favour, 
kept quietly in the background, awaiting the 
issue of all this rioting and disorder. Thus the 
country went from bad to worse. Even in the 
towns, where alone there was the semblance of 
order, the veteran soldiers of the conquest, 
instead of being led against the enemy, were 
harassed with lawsuits. In this way the power 
of the colony was enfeebled, while the enemy 
became more daring in revolt ; and thus were 
affairs mismanaged until the king recalled the 
new-comers as incompetent, not to say cowardly, 
and, turning once more to the men already 
experienced in the conquest of the island, 
entrusted John de Courcy with the administra- 
tion of affairs.^ 

In all this Gerald evidently avoids laying the 
blame expressly on John. He had nothing good 

1 Gir. Camb. v. 390-2. The account given in Gesta 
Hen. i. 339 is in the main consistent with Gerald's : ' Sed 
ipse Johannes parum ibi profecit, quia pro defectu indige- 
narum qui cum eo tenere debebant, et pro eo quod stipendia 
militibus et solidariis suis dare noluit, fere amisit totum 
exercitum suum in pluribus conflictibus quos sui fecerunt 
contra Hibemienses. . . . Et sic praedictus Johannes, filius 
regis, ad opus suum omnia retinere cupiens, pro defectu 
auxilii terram Hiberniae relinquens, in AngHam rediit.' 


to say of him, so he says Httle or nothing. In 
the circumstances, we could hardly expect him 
to be more outspoken. Indeed, for a writer 
who was a courtier, and whose works were 
immediately published, we are astonished at 
his boldness in some passages, both here and 




§ 1. The Succession of Chief Governors 

The period from the death of Hugh de Lacy An ob- 
to the beginning of John's reign is one of great pg^od. 
obscurity in the history of the Anglo-Norman 
settlement in Ireland. Gerald de Barry, to 
whom we owe so much of our knowledge of 
the previous years, now fails us, and the great 
series of state papers and enrolments do not 
yet come to our help. Even the succession of 
justiciars is uncertain, for the list given by 
Walter Harris and followed by Gilbert and 
a host of writers is not correct. In tracing the 
progress of the English we must, to some extent, 
work backwards from their better ascertainable 
position at the commencement of the thirteenth 
century. Eor the stages of that progress we 
have some indications in the Irish annals, which 
record the erection of a few castles and mention 
certain English expeditions, but these annals 
are largely taken up with the inter-tribal 


wars and plunderings of the Irish themselves, 
which seldom had any permanent effect beyond 
weakening the Irish and giving the English 
opportunity to extend their influence. No 
useful purpose would be attained by mentioning 
these conflicts, except so far as they may help 
to explain English action, or had permanent 
results. A few charters which have been 
preserved throw a more certain light on some 
points, while recent archaeological research en- 
ables us to indicate with precision the principal 
manorial centres, and define more closely than 
has hitherto been done the area of Anglo- 
Norman rule. 

We shall first endeavour to ascertain who 

were the chief governors or justiciars of Ireland 

during this period. 

The sue- On the failure of John's mission to Ireland in 

oHiiief 1185, Henry, as we have seen, appointed John 

Gover- ^^ Qq^yqj as I'usticiar, and he remained in this 

capacity up to at least the beginning of the 

reign of Richard I.^ Who succeeded him, and 

at what precise date, is uncertain. In the list 

of chief governors compiled by Walter Harris, 

and followed by Gilbert and other writers, 

' Hugh de Lacy the younger, lord of Meath,' 

^ John de Courcy was justiciar after the time when John, 
the king's son, became Earl of Mortain ; see Henry Tirel's 
charter, Reg. St. Thomas's, Dublin, p. 383, and Grant from 
DubHn Commonalty, Hist, and Mun. Docs. Ireland, p. 56. 



appears as justiciar from 1189 to 1191. But 
Hugh de Lacy the younger was never lord of Hugh de 
Meath, and it is very improbable that he was younger 
made justiciar at this time. His father, Hugh de justiciar. 
Lacy, left at his death, by his first wife, Roheis 
de Monemue (Monmouth), two sons, viz. Walter, 
who afterwards succeeded to the lordship of 
Meath, and Hugh, who was created Earl of 
Ulster in 1205, and a daughter, Elayne, who mar- 
ried Richard de Beaufo.^ Walter and Hugh were 
apparently minors at the time of their father's 
death, and Henry at once made arrangements 
for his son John to return to Ireland, and take 
the fief of Meath into his hand. John had got 
as far as Chester with this object, when Henry, 
on learning of the death of his son Geoffrey 
of Brittany, recalled him,^ and sent Philip of 

^ Diet. Nat. Biog. Richard de Bellofago was a witness 
to Hugh de Lacy's grant of Skreen to Adam de Feipo : 
Chart. St. Mary's, Dubhn, vol. ii, p. 21. The family appear 
to have settled in Ireland. Almaric de Beaufo possessed 
the de Burgh Castle of Esclone in County Limerick in 1215 : 
C. D. I., vol. i, no. 585 ; and Isabella de Beaufo appears in 
1245 as owner of the castle of Clonard in Meath : ibid., 
no. 2762. By his Irish wife, the daughter of Rory O'Conor, 
Hugh de Lacy had a son, Wilham, who afterwards appears 
as a disturber of the peace and was ultimately killed by 
O'Reilly of Breifny in 1233 (Four Masters). Three brothers 
of William de Lacy, named Sir Henry Blund, Thomas 
Blund, and another, are mentioned, C. D. I., vol. i, no. 1203. 
Probably Hugh de Lacy's widow married a Blund. 

2 Gesta Hen., vol. i, p. 350. Henry appears to have had 
a scheme at this time for crowning John king of Ireland, 


Worcester to Ireland in John's place. ^ John's 
grant of Meath to Walter de Lacy was made in 
the reign of Richard I,^ and it is probable that 
Walter did not get actual possession until 1194, 
when he did homage to Richard I for his lands, 
and when, we are told, he 'received the lord- 
ship of Meath and apprehended Peter Pipard, 
justiciar, with his comrades '.^ If this be so, 
it is impossible to believe that Hugh de Lacy, 
Walter's younger brother, could have been 
justiciar in 11 89-9 L Moreover, the authority 
for this statement seems to be the Book of 
Howth, but the account there is quite untrust- 
worthy, and actually confuses Hugh de Lacy 
the elder with his son of the same name.* 

and had obtained from Pope Urban III his sanction and 
a crown of peacocks' feathers embroidered with gold (Rog. 
de Hoveden, vol, ii, pp. 306-7), but it came to nothing. 

1 Chronicle of St. Werburg's Abbey, Chester, as quoted 
in Ware's Annals. 

2 Gormanston Register, f. 5 dors. For Richard's con- 
firmatory grant see ibid., f. 5. 

3 Hist. GuiU. le Marechal, U. 10297-304, and Marl- 
burgh's Chron. 1194 : ' Walterus de Lacy recepit dominium 
de Media et Petrum Pipard justitiarium cum suis mihtibus 
deprehendit' (T.C.D. MS. E, 3, 20, p. 135). Was Peter 
Pipard intriguing with John against Walter de Lacy, just 
as Meiler Fitz Henry afterwards intrigued against WiUiam 
the Marshal ? 

* Carew Calendar (Book of Howth), pp. 105-17. If the 
whole passage be read attentively it will be seen that the 
original compiler — adding, as he says, to the account of 
Giraldus some passages from an English translation made in 


The next justiciar, according to Harris, was 
William le Petit in 1191. This may be correct, 
but the authority is not forthcoming. He was 
a powerful baron in Meath, and, at any rate, 
appears as justiciar later. Then in the same 
year and up to 1194, when Peter Pipard is said 
to have been justiciar, Harris places WiUiam the William 
Marshal as governor. When we come to narrate Marshal 
the doings of this great man we shall see how goygi-nor. 
extremely improbable it is that he was governor, 
or indeed in Ireland at all, at this time. In 
short, our scanty authorities only warrant us in 
stating that Peter Pipard was probably justiciar 
in 1194;^ that Hamo de Valognes was justiciar 
from about 1196 to shortly before the begin- 
ning of John's reign ; ^ and that Peter Pipard 

1551 by Primate Dowdall out of a Latin book found with 
O'Neill at Armagh — has attempted to weave into the narra- 
tive of Giraldus some traditional stories as to the death of 
Sir Almaric de St. Laurent, the taking of John de Courcy, 
and the subsequent career of the latter ; but in doing so 
he has hopelessly confused the two Hughs. Probably he 
intended the elder Hugh throughout. The confusion be- 
comes quite manifest when the murder of the elder Hugh 
at Durrow is spoken of as a just punishment for his malicious 
treatment of John de Courcy (pp. 116-17). 

^ Marlburgh's Chron. (as above). The entry on the 
Coram Rege Roll relating to Peter Pipard's justiciarship 
(Cal. Docs. Irel., vol. i, no. 116) probably refers to 1198-9. 

2 Dubhn Annals of Inisf alien, 1196. In the Charter Roll 
of the 1st John, Hamo de Valognes is repeatedly referred 
to as having been justiciar. He was apparently still justiciar 
in 1198 : Papal Letters, vol. i, p. 3. 

1226 n H 


and William le Petit were ' joint justiciars ' for 
a short time in 1198-9,^ until Meiler Fitz Henry 
was appointed by King John.^ Meiler appears 
to have been justiciar continuously up to about 
the autumn of 1208, and Harris's list is again 
faulty in making Hugh de Lacy lord-deputy in 
1203 to 1205.^ There are many mandates to 
Meiler as justiciar during this period. Hugh 
de Lacy was, no doubt, carrying out the king's 
wishes (and his own) in chasing John de Courcy 
from Ulster, but this did not make him governor 
or displace Meiler. 

§ 2. John de Courcy as Justiciar and 

IN Ulster 

John de Of John de Courcy' s justiciarship we have few 
ChiS'^ particulars. Giraldus tells us in general terms 
Governor, ^j^^j. u^dcr his vigorous rule the kingdom began 

1 Chart. St. Mary's, Dublin, vol. i, p. 144 ; vol. ii, p. 28. 
This charter must be dated after Sept. 1198, when John, 
a Cistercian monk, was consecrated by the Pope Bishop of 
Leighlin : Papal Letters, vol. i, p. 3. Simon de Rocheford, 
another witness, is called ' elect of Meath '. He is usually 
stated to have succeeded Eugenius in 1194, but it is pretty 
clear that he was not consecrated Bishop of Meath until 
about 1198-9. 

2 Rot. Chart., 2 John, p. 98 b. There are mandates to 
Meiler as justiciar before this date. The earliest is dated 
Sept. 4, 1199. Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, no. 90. 

^ Perhaps this second tenure of office was also suggested 
by the apocryphal story in the Book of Howth : Car. 
Cal., p. 111. 


to enjoy a more extended peace. The peace, 
however, was confined to the settled districts in 
the east of Ireland, as our author immediately 
goes on to say that de Courcy did not permit 
his troops to lie idle, but led them to the furthest 
parts of the land, to Cork and Connaught, and 
feared not to try the doubtful chances of war, 
which were sometimes in his favour and some- 
times against him. This leads to the exclama- 
tion, ' Would that he had shown the prudence 
of a general as well as the bravery of a soldier ! ' ^ 
The Irish annals say nothing about the expedi- 
tion to Cork, which was presumably to aid the 
settlers there, but under the year 1188 give some 
details of the expedition to Connaught. This His ex- 
province was still torn by the conflict between to Con- 
Rory 0' Conor and his son Conor Maenmoy. jjgf *' 
The peace patched up between them in 1185,^ 
on the basis of a division of Connaught, did 
not last long. Before the year was out Conor 
Maenmoy 'assumed the sovereignty of Con- 
naught ', and next year he expelled his father.^ 
The new king was hostile to the English, and in 
favour of taking active measures against them. 
In 1187 he made an attack on Meath, burned 
the newly erected mote-castle of Killare, and 
killed all the English who were in it.* It was 

1 Gir. Camb. v. 392. 2 Supra, p. 101. 

3 Ann. Ulster, Ann. Loch Ce, 1186. 

4 Four Masters, 1187. 



probably to punish him for this outrage that 
John de Courcy, as justiciar, made an incursion 
into Connaught in the following year. He was 
accompanied by Conor O'Dermot, an illegiti- 
mate son of Rory 0' Conor, ^ and we may 
perhaps infer that the pretext of the incursion 
was the reinstatement of Rory 0' Conor. The 
expedition was unsuccessful, however. Donnell 
O'Brien on this occasion came to the support 
of his former enemy, Conor Maenmoy, and the 
English, after fruitlessly burning some churches, 
endeavoured to return by way of Tirconnell. 
They got as far as Ballysadare, when, on learning 
that the Cinel Council were assembled to oppose 
them, they once more turned through Connaught, 
and after suffering some loss in the Curlew 
Mountains they were forced to leave the 
country ' without a whit of triumph '.^ Clearly 
John de Courcy was outgeneralled, and it is 
possible that he was soon afterwards superseded. 
When John de Courcy surrendered his office 
of justiciar he no doubt retired to his lordship 
of Ulster, the southern part of which, at any 

1 This Conor, grandson of Dermot, seems to have been 
a son of Rory 0' Conor. It was at his instigation that Conor 
Maenmoy was killed next year. He is then called in the 
Annals of Loch Ce (1189) ' own brother ' of Conor Maenmoy ; 
cf. Ann. Ulster, 1189. He may have been one of Rory's 
numerous illegitimate progeny. He was killed in the same 
year by Cathal Carragh, son of Conor Maenmoy. 

2 Ann. Ulster, Ann. Loch Ce, 1188, 


rate, was already fully organized. As early as 
1188 we read of the foreigners of the castle of 
Magh Cobha ^ making an incursion into Tiro wen, 
and in 1189 Armagh was plundered ; but no 
permanent settlement was made there, and the 
Newry river and Glenrigh may be regarded as 
the boundary of the lordship in this direction. 
Indeed, in many of the inland parts of the present 
counties of Down and Antrim the Irish tribes 
seem to have accepted the new order of things 
and to have been undisturbed. 

For several years we hear little more of John 
de Courcy, and that ' little ' has already been 
indicated in chapter xii. We may leave him 
building his castles, founding his religious estab- 
lishments, and governing his lordship like an 
independent monarch, while we take a rapid 
survey of the other great feudal lordships and 

^ Magh Cobha was the name of the plain extending from 
Dromore to Newry inhabited by the tribe of Ui Eathach 
Cobha, a name now preserved in the baronies of Iveagh. 
Perhaps the great mote at Dromore represents John de 
Courcy's castle. The castle of ' Maincove ' is mentioned in 
the confirmation by Innocent III of John de Courcy's 
charter to St. Andrew de Stokes : Papal Letters, vol. i, 
p. 17. It was rebuilt in stone in 1252 (Ann. Ulster ; 
C. I). I., vol. ii, no. 124), and demolished by Brian O'Neill 
in the following year : Ann. Ulster. It was restored 
c. 1260: Irish Pipe Roll, 45 Hen. III. See Facsimiles 
Nat. MSS. Ireland, pt. ii, pi. 73. The river Lagan, which 
flows by Dromore, was in Magh Cobha. See Hogan's 


districts in the east of Ireland, and, so far as 
our scanty materials allow, note the progress 
made by the English colonists during the two 
decades that followed Hugh de Lacy's death. 
We shall then describe their expansion in Mun- 
ster, and their dealings in Connaught during 
the same period. 

§ 3. English Uriel 

Uriel. Between Ulster and Meath lay the Irish dis- 

trict of Oirghialla (anglicized Uriel), roughly 
equivalent at this time to the modern counties 
of Louth, Armagh, and Monaghan. The eastern 
portion of this district was overrun as early as 
1176 by the English of Meath, and after 1177 
by John de Courcy from Ulidia, but probably 
no organized settlement was made in it, except 
at Drogheda, and perhaps at Dundalk, until 
after John's visit to Ireland in 1185. At that 
time, or soon afterwards, John seems to have 
treated the modern county of Louth as already 
conquered, and to have granted two large 
fiefs in it to two of his followers, while reserv- 
ing a considerable slice for the Crown. ^ To 
Bertram de Verdun, his seneschal, he gave 
a district now represented by the barony of 

1 References to the authorities for the statements in this 
section as to the Anglo-Norman settlement in Louth will 
be found in my paper on ' Motes and Norman Castles in 
Co. Louth ', Joum. R. S. A. I. 1908, pp. 241-69. 


Dundalk, and perhaps the eastern half of the 
barony of Ferrard as well, and to Roger (or 
perhaps to Gilbert) Pipard he gave the barony 
of Ardee. Certainly this barony was afterwards 
held along with the parish of Donaghmoyne, in 
Farney, County Monaghan, by Roger, brother of 
Gilbert Pipard. The king retained the barony 
of Louth in his own hand, and portions of it 
were granted from time to time to smaller 
holders. The church-lands of Iniskeen, Dromis- 
kin, Termonfeckin, Mellifont, and Monaster- 
boice were, as usual, not interfered with. The 
abbey of Mellifont, founded by Donough 0' Car- 
roll in 1158, was now at the height of its fame, 
and here in 1189 died Donough's son, Murrough, 
the last king of undivided Uriel, and here in 
1193 Dervorgil, the teterrima causa belli, ended 
her days at the age of eighty-five. 

Bertram de Verdun was made custodian of Bertram 
the Bridge of Drogheda. This expression would verdun. 
seem to include the castle of the bridge, often 
afterwards mentioned. This castle stood on the 
mote which still exists on the Meath side of the 
river. It was probably erected by Hugh de 
Lacy the elder to guard the bridge, and came 
into John's hand on Hugh's death. It was 
afterwards retained as a royal castle, and rent 
by way of compensation was paid to Walter de 
Lacy and his successors for more than a century. 
When the town was walled on the Meath side, 


the town walls were carried up the steep river 
bank to join the wall of the castle-bailey, and 
the mote and bailey then probably occupied 
the southern salient of the town walls. ^ At 
some subsequent time the wall on the eastern 
side was altered so as to include St. Mary's 
Church and a larger portion of the town. 
More recently the place was fitted up for 
barracks, but with all the changes of cen- 
turies the original mote and bailey plan has 
been in all essentials preserved up to the 
present day. 

The caput of the de Verdun barony of Dundalk 
was at Castletown, about a mile to the west of 
the town, where an important mote marks the 
site of the first Norman castle. This mote has 
been supposed to be the dun delga of Cuchulainn, 
one of the principal figures in the Red Branch 
cycle of tales. It is possible that it occupies 
the site of an older Celtic fort, but as it stands 
it is essentially a Norman structure.^ There was 
an ancient fishing-village at Dundalk before this, 
but * the new vill ' or ' Stradbally (street-town) 
of Dundalk ' owed its origin to the Anglo- 

1 This may be inferred from the murage grants, that of 
1318 being ' in subsidium ville predicte claudende usque ad 
muros castri nostri ejusdem ville' : Hist, and Mun. Docs. 
Ireland, p. 413. At the present day the remains of the toM n 
wall join the wall of the bailey on the west side. 

2 See my paper, ' Motes and Norman Castles in Co. Louth ' 
(as above), pp. 256-61. 


Norman settlers, and to the protection afforded 
by the castle-town. Bertram de Verdun re- 
mained in Ireland after John left at the close 
of 1185, when Gerald de Barry was his guest. ^ 
The position of his house just outside the walls 
of Dublin, was long marked by the name 
' Curia Bertrami '.^ He is said to have founded 
the hospital of St. Leonard at Dundalk for 
Ouciferi, but how far he exploited his lands in 
Uriel is uncertain. He accompanied Richard I 
on his crusade and died at Joppa in 1192. He 
was succeeded by his son Thomas, about whom 
little has hitherto been known. A remarkable 
document, however, preserved in the Gorman- 
ston Register, explains how Hugh de Lacy the 
younger obtained lands from Thomas de Verdun 
in the north of the present county of Louth, 
and throws light on the methods of expansion 
contemplated by the settlers. This document is, 
in the first place, an acknowledgement that 
Thomas de Verdun had given to Hugh de Lacy 
in frank marriage with Thomas's sister Leceline 
de Verdun the moiety of his land in Uriel, 
retaining, however, to himself and his heirs the 
castle of Dundalk and five knights' fees in its 
vicinity ; and, in the second place, an agreement 
to divide equally between the parties whatever 
they may acquire in the ' land of war ' in their 

1 Gir. Camb. i. 65. 

2 See Gilbert's Hist, of Dublin, vol. i, p. 239. 


respective parts of Uriel. ^ Hence, probably, the 
division of the barony into Upper and Lower 

Thomas de Verdun died in 1199, presumably 
without issue, and was succeeded by his brother 
Nicholas. The latter, in 1203, was given the 
custody of ' the bridge of Drogheda as his father 
held it ',^ and soon afterwards he obtained 
seisin of all his father's lands in Ireland.^ He 
was the ancestor of a distinguished Anglo-Irish 
house, and his grandson, John de Verdun, by 
his marriage with Margaret de Lacy, one of the 
two granddaughters and co-heiresses of Walter 
de Lacy, became entitled to a moiety of the 
lordship of Meath. 
Roger The ca'put of Roger Pipard's barony was at 

Ardee, where a great mote known as ' Castle- 

1 Gormanston Register, f. 189 dors. This agreement 
must be dated between 1192 and 1199. The latter clause 
runs as follows : ' Et quicquid prefati Thomas et Hugo de 
Lacy poterint conquirere in terra gwerre in partibus suis 
terre de Ergallo totum inter se dimidiabunt sicut dimidiaue- 
runt inter se terram pacis.' For the date of Thomas de 
Verdun's death I can only refer to Gilbert, Chart. St. Mary's, 
Dublin, vol. i, p. 66, note. 

2 Liberate, 5 John, p. 59. 

^ Rot. Claus., 7 John, m. 23 (p. 38). His principal manors 
were Dundalk and Clonmore ; the latter was in the barony 
of Ferrard. One of his feudatories was Henry de Wotton, 
to whom he granted five knights' fees in the hilly district 
north of Dundalk : Chart. St. Mary's Abbey, Dublin, 
vol. i, p. 65. 


guard ', though much mutilated, in all probability 
marks the spot.^ Roger was brother of Gilbert 
Pipard, who accompanied Prince John to 
Ireland in 1185, and may have been the original 
grantee,^ and of Peter Pipard, justiciar in 1194, 
and he was himself a trusted officer of King 
John. He founded the priory of St. John the 
Baptist at Ardee.^ In 1193 he erected the castle 
of Donaghmoyne, where a strongly-defended 
mote, bearing the ruins of a later stone castle, 
still excites the wonder of the visitor by its 
size and strength.* Roger Pipard was a faithful 
servant of King John, and was made seneschal 
of Ulster and custodian of the castle of Rath 
(Dundrum), after the disseisin of Hugh de Lacy 

^ This mote as figured in Louthiana (by T, Wright, 1748) 
shows the foundations of an octagonal keep surrounded 
by an octagonal parapet or wall on its summit. It was 
encircled by two ditches and ramparts, and had an earthen 
wall or approach crossing the ditches and running up the 

2 Gilbert Pipard accompanied Richard I on his crusade, 
and died at Brundusium : Gesta Ricardi, p. 150. 

3 This foundation is placed by Ware in the year 1207. 

^ Ann. Loch Ce, 1193. In the year 1244 it was enclosed 
or fortified with stone, do chumhdach do chlochaibh : Ann. 
Ulster. The ruins at present existing may well date from 
this time. The earthworks consist of a lofty mote sur- 
rounded by a deep fosse and wide rampart. The western 
end is further defended by a second fosse and rampart, and 
an excavated pond. At the eastern side is a lofty bailey, 
strongly fortified, and beyond this a second one at a lower 


in 1210. For about a century he and his 
representatives were lords of Ardee. He died 
in 1225. His great-grandson, Ralph Pipard, in 
the beginning of the fourteenth century, sur- 
rendered all his Irish lands to Edward I. 

Among the feudatories of Roger Pipard were 
Ralph de Repenteni, lord of Drumcar and 
Killany, now parishes at the east and west 
extremities of the barony ; Ralph de Vernun, 
lord of ' Balisconan ' (including Stabannon), 
whose daughter, Cecilia, married Geoffrey des 
Auters. Other tenants or sub-tenants were Hugh 
de Clinton (Clintonstown and Drumcashel in the 
parish of Stabannon), Geoffrey de Hadeshore, 
Peter de Maupas (Mapestown), and Robert Mor, 
all bearing names for many years distinguished 
in the County Louth. ^ 
Barony In John's barony of Louth the castle was 

already in existence in 1196, when it and the 
town were plundered and destroyed by Niall 
MacMahon and the Ulidians.^ The castle was 
soon rebuilt, and in 1204 Meiler Fitz Henry, the 
justiciar, was ordered to take the city of Louth 
into the king's hand, and make what improve- 
ments he could in it.^ The castle was probably 
situated on the mote which still exists near the 

^ These and other names may be gleaned from among 
the benefactors of St. Mary's Abbey, DubUn. 

2 Ann. InisfaUen, Dubhn MS., 1196. 

3 Rot. Pat., 5 John, p. 38 ; Rot. Claus., 6 Jolin, p. 16 b. 


glebe-house, and which appears to have been 
connected with the town trench. We read also 
of two subordinate manors in the neighbourhood, 
Castlefranc and Ays, the capita of which are now 
represented by the motes of Castlering and Mount 
Ash. In the eastern part of the barony of 
Louth the old Celtic monastery of Dromiskin had 
long ceased to exist, but the church-lands there 
were recognized as a manor belonging to the 
Archbishop of Armagh. Among the knights 
who followed John in 1210 to Carrickfergus were 
Robert de Mandeville and Ralph Gernon. To 
the former he seems to have granted the lands 
known from him as Mandevillestown ^ (now 
corruptly Mansfieldstown), and perhaps the 
latter was the first grantee of the manor of 
Killincoole, which, together with Gernonstown 
(now Castlebellingham), was held by a family 
of that name for centuries.^ The first grantee 
of the manor of Darver is uncertain.^ 

^ See Close Roll, 13 Hen. Ill, m. 9; Calendar, vol, i, 
no. 1677, where ' Lune ' stands for ' Luveth ', and cf. 
nos. 1284 and 1681. 

2 Richard, son and heir of WiUiam Gernon, was a tenant 
in capite of the Crown in 1229 : Cal. Docs. Ireland, i, no. 
1729, 38th Rep. D. K., p. 72. 

^ Prior to 1286 the Manor of Derver was held by Richard 
of Exeter as tenant in capite of the Crown : Irish Pipe Roll, 
16 Ed. I, 37th Rep. D. K., p. 35. A member of the family 
of Babe held it from the close of the fourteenth century to 
Stuart times. 


§ 4. Meath 

Meath. Hugh de Lacy's murder in 1186 was probably 

an act of private revenge, and does not appear 
to have been followed by any general outbreak 
in Meath. His lands were taken into the king's 
hand, and it was probably not until 1194 that 
Walter Hugh's son Walter got possession.^ Walter 
continued his father's work of feudal organiza- 
tion, renewed the grant which had already been 
made of ' the law of Bristol ' to the burgesses of 
Trim, and, perhaps for the first time, gave a 
similar charter to the burgesses of Kells.^ To 
Hugh his brother, Hugh de Lacy, he gave the barony 
junior. ' of Ratoath, and at the same time the confiscated 
lands of Gilbert de Nangle, in the barony of 
Simon de The first Anglo-Norman Bishop of Meath was 
ford/ Simon de Rocheford (1198-1224). He founded 
T/Meath ^^ Augustinian priory at Newtown near Trim, 
the picturesque ruins of which still remain, and 
for about three centuries the chapel of the 
priory served as the cathedral church of the 
diocese. It was probably after the year 1200, 
when Clonard was burnt by the Irish, that the 

^ Supra, p. 112. ^ Chartae Priv. et Immun., p. 10. 

3 Gormanston Register, f. 188 dors. Supra, pp. 76, 84. 
John's confirmatory charter, as transcribed in the same 
Register, is dated December 4 a. r. 10 Richard I (1198). 
' apud [Injsulam Andh[elys]." 


episcopal seat was moved here. Simon de 
Rocheford did much to consoHdate and organize 
the diocese. In early times there were several 
bishops in Meath. As elsewhere, they were 
tribal rather than diocesan, but the rural 
deaneries of Meath may be taken as representing 
the ancient bishoprics. The policy of consolida- 
tion began with the Synod of Kells in 1152, 
but Simon de Rocheford carried it further by 
ordaining that ' in the churches of Trim, Kells, 
Slane, Skryne, and Dunshaughlin, which were 
at one time episcopal sees in Meath, but are now 
heads of rural deaneries, for the future arch- 
presbyters be appointed '.^ 

During all this period we hear of no serious 
fighting with the native tribes. The whole of 
East Meath and much of West Meath had been 
parcelled out amongst Hugh de Lacy's barons, 
and the whole lordship was studded with mote- 
fortresses. The Irish inhabitants seem in general 
to have lived quite contentedly under their 
new lords. The late ruling family, the O'Melagh- 
lins, still claimed to be kings of West Meath, 
but their power appears to have been gradually 
confined to the barony of Clonlonan. Almost 
the only recorded disturbance arose from out- Castle of 
side. In 1187 Conor Maenmoy, who had expelled 
his father Rory from Connaught, made an 

^ Wilkins's Concilia, i, 547. 


unprovoked incursion into West Meath, and, 
assisted by Melaghlin Beg, burned and destroyed 
the castle of Killare and killed its garrison.^ It is 
doubtful if it was ever rebuilt, but the position 
in the west of the lordship was strengthened 
Other by the erection of mote-castles at Rathconarty 
(now Rathconrath) in 1191, and at Ardnurcher 
and Kilbixy in 1192.^ The two last were in 
lands granted to Meiler Fitz Henry and Geoffrey 
de Costentin respectively, and in process of time 
they were replaced by stone castles and small 
towns grew up under their protection. At 
Tristernagh, near Kilbixy, Geoffrey de Costentin, 
about the year 1200, founded a priory of canons 
regular.^ In the same year Richard de Tuit 
erected a castle on a large mote at Granard in 
the present county of Longford, ' as a stronghold 
against O'Reilly of Brefifny.' * This may be 
taken as the limit of the colony in this direction, 
though some other mote-fortresses were built in 
the south-eastern baronies of County Longford, 

1 Four Masters, 1187. 2 Ann. Loch Ce, 1191, 1192. 

^ Ware, quoting from the Register of Tristernagh. 

4 Ann. InisfaUen (Dublin MS.), Ann. Loch Ce, 1199. 
The mote is about 40 feet high, and still retains traces of 
stone foundations round the top surface. There is a small 
bailey attached, and the whole is nearly surrounded by 
a mutilated earthen rampart. O'Donovan says that about 
fifty years before he wrote the arched vaults of a castle, built 
of cut stone and well cemented, were found within the mote : 
Four Masters, 1262, note o. 


then considered part of the ancient kingdom 
of Meath. A few years later Richard de Tuit 
founded the Cistercian abbey of Larha, near 
Granard. We do not know exactly when the 
mote at Athlone was erected to guard the im- 
portant ford across the Shannon against the 
0' Conors, but it was probably before the year 
1199, when Cathal Crovderg burned the bawn of 
Athlone and carried off many cows from the 

§ 5. Dublin 

Dublin appears to have grown considerably, Dublin, 
and to have become a flourishing commercial 
town during these twenty years. To this period 
must be referred the list of 1600 Dublin citizens, 
of which we have already given an analysis.^ 
In the year 1192 John granted an extended Charter of 
charter to his citizens of Dublin — to those 
dwelling outside the walls as well as to those 
dwelling within.^ The boundaries south of 
the Liffey extended from the river Dodder to 
Kilmainham, and on the north from Grange- 
gorman to the river Tolka. The principal 
liberties granted by this charter were to the 
following effect : that citizens should not be 
obliged to plead beyond their walls except as 
regards external tenements, nor be liable to 

1 Ann. Loch Ce, 1199. 2 Swpra, vol. i, pp. 270-1. 

^ Hist, and Mun. Docs. Ireland, pp. 51-5. 

1226 II I 


a general fine for murder ; that they might 
clear themselves on any appeal by compurgation, 
instead of by wager of battle ; that they should 
not be liable to forcible billeting ; that (as before) 
they should be free from certain tolls throughout 
John's dominions ; that they should not be 
amerced in fines except according to the law 
of their hundred-court ; that the usages of the 
city should prevail as regards their lands, debts, 
and mortgages held or contracted therein ; that 
no foreign merchant should buy corn, hides, or 
wool in the city except from a citizen, nor 
should open a wine-tavern except on board ship, 
nor sell cloth by retail in the city, nor tarry 
therein with his wares for more than forty days ; 
that citizens, other than the principal debtor or 
sureties, should not be distrained anywhere for 
debts ; that they might contract marriages for 
themselves, their sons, daughters, and widows, 
without licence of their lords, who should only 
have the custody during infancy of tenements 
of the lord's fee ; that no assize of recognition 
should be held in the city ; that the citizens 
should have all reasonable guilds as the burgesses 
of Bristol had ; that the citizens, by common 
consent, might dispose freely of lands and 
messuages within the boundaries to be held in 
free burgage, and might freely build, subject to 
the rights of those to whom John had already 
given charters. This, the first extended charter 


granted in Ireland, was modelled on the charter 
given by John to Bristol in 1188, and was soon 
followed by others, similarly framed, and granted 
by the various feudal owners to the principal 
towns in their domains, as they grew to be of 

As we have already noted, it was during this 
period that Archbishop Cumin converted the Arch- 
parochial church of St. Patrick de Insula into cumm. 
a collegiate church, and endowed it with thir- 
teen prebends. Close by, at St. Sepulchre's, he 
appears to have had his principal residence. 
By moving outside the walls, however, he did 
not escape coming into conflict with Hamo de 
Valognes, who was justiciar in 1196-8. Hamo 
and his men are said to have done great injuries 
to the archbishop and the Church in 1197. What 
these injuries were we are not told, but the 
archbishop took them so seriously that he excom- 
municated the offenders, and, pronouncing an 
interdict upon the archbishopric, went into exile. 
Like the men of Connaught in the face of Miles de 
Cogan's incursion in 1177, he 'ordered the crosses 
and images of the cathedral church to be laid 
an the ground and to be surrounded with thorns, 
that thus these malefactors might be smitten 
with fear and be checked in their intentions to 
rage against the property of the Church '. The 
3arved Christ on the cross showed, it is said, 
miraculous signs of agony, but in vain. The 



archbishop appealed to King Richard and to 
Earl John, but without success.^ In December 
1204 the Pope threatened an interdict if John 
did not replace the archbishop in his favour.^ 
Ultimately Hamo is said to have compensated 
the archbishop by a grant of ' twenty carucates 
of land in Ucunil '.^ John Cumin had other 
quarrels about property with King John. Like 
Becket, when once made archbishop he was 
a great stickler for the rights of his see, which 
he left immensely richer than it was when he 
received it. 

§ 6. The Crown Lands and Leinster 

The In the crown lands of Dublin, Wicklow, and 

lands and Watcrford, as in the whole lordship of Leinster, 
einster. ^^ read of no fighting. As we saw when review- 
ing the sub-infeudation of Leinster, large tracts 
of country were left by Earl Richard in the 
hands of the Irish, either by arrangement with 
the native princes or because they were not 
thoroughly subdued. Thus in the northern 

1 Roger de Hoveden (1197) iv. 29-30. 

2 Cal. Papal Letters (Bliss) i. 18. 

3 Crede Mihi, p. 66, Tliis grant probably consisted of 
one knight's fee in Culballysiward (near Bruree in Upper 
ConneUo), together with a tenement in Bruree, given by 
Hamo, Lord of Tniskyfty, to the predecessor of John de 
Sanford, Archbishop of Dubhn, as found by an inquisi- 
tion of 1289 (quoted by Mr. Westropp, Journ. R. S. A. I. 
1903, p. 29). Cf. Cal Liber Niger Alani, p. 771. 


part of the present county of Wexford and 
adjoining portions of the Counties Carlo w and 
Wicklow, the tribes of Okinselagh seem to have 
been left by the earl under the rule of Murtough 
McMurrough. He lived on to 1193. We hear 
no more of the Mc Murroughs nor of any disturb- 
ance from them until the reign of Edward I. 
Indeed, even then the disturbance first arose 
from the O'Tooles and 0' Byrnes. In Upper 
Ossory the Mac GiUapatricks still held sway ; 
in parts of Leix the O'Mores, and in the western 
parts of Offaly the 0' Conors and O'Dempsys 
held much of their own. The county of Kildare 
was, as we have seen, very fully parcelled out, 
and some of the tribes, such as the O'Tooles and 
O'Bjrrnes, retreated to the uplands of the County 
Wicklow, where they maintained their tribal 
organization and a lawless freedom, and were 
afterwards from time to time a source of danger 
and injury to the colony. 

In 1189, after the accession of Richard I, 
Isabel de Clare, the heiress of Leinster and of 
many lands besides, was given in marriage to 
William Marshal, and soon afterwards he seems 
to have obtained seisin of his Irish lordship. 
With the possible exception of one or two brief 
visits, he did not come to Ireland until the close 
of the year 1206, and we shall reserve our 
account of him and his doings in Ireland to 
a subsequent chapter. 


§ 7. The Downfall of John de Courcy 

We must now return to John de Courcy, 

who after twenty years of prosperity in Ulster 

entered upon a stormy period which ended in 

John de his downfall. While the air in the north was 

maS" still unruffled, however, acting apparently as an 

iUWone^ emissary of the government and accompanied 

by one of the de Lacys, probably his neighbour 

Hugh, he led an army in 1195 to Athlone, 

where he negotiated a peace with Cathal Crovderg 

O' Conor, King of Connaught, who had been making 

raids on the Anglo-Norman settlement inMunster. 

To this expedition we shall recur when we have 

described the events in Munster which led to it. 

In 1197 Jordan de Courcy, John's brother, 

Murder of was slain by an Irishman of his household. This 

Jordan de ■, . i x • • j. • t i ? 

Courcy. murder seems to mark a turning-point m J ohn s 
career. Certainly after it he became more 
aggressive. He is said to have avenged his 
brother's death on certain petty kings, sub- 
jugating their territories and giving no small 
part of them to Duncan, son of Gilbert of 
Galloway, who had come to his aid.^ This is 
the first we hear of a Scottish settlement in the 
neighbourhood of Coleraine, where large grants 
were afterwards made to Scots of Galloway 
by King John. Indeed, we need have no hesi- 
tation in connecting the erection in this year of 
^ Roger of Hoveden, iv. 25. 


the castle of Kilsantain or Kilsantail, identified The 

ofisljjf* or 

with the mote of Mount Sandel near Coleraine, Kiisan- 
and the devastation of the adjoining cantred of 
Keenaught in Tirowen,^ with this expedition. 

Since the year 1177 an intermittent struggle 
for the kingship of Tirowen appears to have been 
going on between the 0' Loughlins and the O'Neills , 
the latter a name afterwards illustrious in the 
annals of Ireland, but now for the first time 
coming to the front. Between the years 1186 
and 1201 no fewer than four kings of the 
Cinel Owen were killed and three deposed, while 
for several of these years Flaherty O'Muldory, 
King of Tirconnell, taking advantage of the 
weakness due to this intestine feud, had imposed 
his rule over Tirowen. In 1196 an O'LoughUn 
was killed by his own people, and it was appar- 
ently on behalf of another O'Loughlin that the 
first expedition from the castle of Kilsantail 
into Tirowen was made in 1197.^ In that year Raids 
Flaherty O'Muldory died, and for four years Tirowen. 
John de Courcy made repeated plundering 
expeditions, with varying success, to Derry and 
Inishowen, but no permanent settlement seems 
to have been effected. 

In 1201 John de Courcy, in company with 

1 Ann. Ulster, Four Masters, 1197 ; Ann. Loch Ce, 1196. 

2 Ann. Ulster, 1197 ; Ann. Loch Ce, 1196. John de 
Courcy' s men ' were slaughtered to a large number around 
the son of Ardgal O'Loughlin'. 


Expedi- Hugh de Lacy, made an unsuccessful expedi- 
te Con- tion into Connaught to assist Cathal Crovderg 
"20^*' O' Conor, who had been expelled by his grand- 
nephew Cathal Carragh.^ He seems, indeed, 
always to have welcomed the prospect of a fight 
and to have hearkened to the call of almost any 
dispossessed chieftain, hoping no doubt to get 
profit to himself by the way. But in all his 
campaigning, which for the most part was un- 
successful, we seem to see the truth of Gerald 
de Barry's criticism that he was ' more of a 
soldier than of a general '. Within his lordship 
of Uladh, however, after the first few years of 
his occupation, we hear of no fighting. We may 
conclude that he dominated the whole country 
to the east of the Bann, Lough Neagh, and the 
Newry river,^ and that the native tribes there 
acquiesced in his rule. To attain this result he 
must have been something of a statesman. 
But the fall of this remarkable man was near 
The fall at hand. He incurred the wrath of King John 
Courcy. ^ ^^^ succumbcd to the treachery of his com- 
panions in arms, the de Lacys. John de 
Courcy's expeditions into Connaught will be 
better understood when the relations of the 
rival claimants to the throne there with the 

1 See below, p. 187. 

2 The distribution of motes in Ulster, most of which were 
probably erected in John de Courcy's time, would alone 
indicate this. 


English government and with WilHam de Burgh 
have been examined. Here we may observe 
that these expeditions cannot have been the real 
cause of the king's ire against John de Courcy 
or of his ultimate ruin.^ This supposition would 
not only seem to be excluded by the dates, 
but would fail to account for the royal favour 
bestowed on the de Lacys, one of whom at any 
rate shared in de Courcy' s expedition. Some 
other cause of the royal ire must be sought. 
Probably de Courcy refused to do homage to 
John as king, and claimed to rule in Ulster 
independently.^ Perhaps, too, there is truth 
in the tradition that he afterwards used very 

1 In a mandate dated the 4th of September, 1199, the 
king bids Meiler Fitz Henry inquire whether Henry Tirel 
' had sided with John de Courcy and W. de Lacy and aided 
them in destroying the king's land of Ireland ' : Cal. Docs. 
Ireland, vol. i, no. 90. This cannot refer to the Connaught 
expedition of 1201, and is unlikely to refer to that of 1195. 
It is more probable that it refers to John de Courcy's raids 
into Tirowen in 1198-9, though there is no mention in 
the annals of his being accompanied there by one of the 
de Lacys. According to the story of John de Courcy's 
treacherous arrest as told by Roger de Hoveden, Hugh de 
Lacy said he was John's liegeman. It is very probable 
that Hugh held lands of John in Ulster or perhaps in the 
north of the present County Louth. Perhaps the W. de 
Lacy of John's mandate was WiUiam de Lacy, son of the 
elder Hugh by the daughter of Rory O'Conor. 

2 This is intimated in the Laud MS. Annals (Chart. 
St. Mary's, Dublin, ii. 309) and in the Book of Howth, 
p. 111. Roger de Hoveden (iv. 162), when giving, after 


plain language with regard to John's treatment 
of Arthur of Brittany. Nothing would have 
been more Hkely to arouse John's vindictive- 
ness. But, indeed, to judge by authenticated 
facts alone, John would appear to have behaved 
with unwonted forbearance, and the person 
whose conduct in the affair shows worst was 
not the king, but Hugh de Lacy, who was ready 
to do the bidding of the king, to his own advan- 
tage, but to the ruin of his former friend and 
companion in arms. The authenticated facts 
are as follows : On arriving in Meath after his 
forced retreat from Connaught in 1201, John 
de Courcy was treacherously arrested by the 
de Lacys, and would have been delivered up 
to the king, ' who had long wished to take 
him,' only that his release was obtained by his 
followers as the price of their ceasing to ravage 
the de Lacv lands. ^ He returned to Uladh, 
and in July 1202 was offered a safe-conduct to 
and from the king's court ' to treat of peace '." 
This he must have ignored, for in 1203 Hugh de 
Lacy followed him to Uladh, defeated him in 

the manner of chroniclers, a list of sovereigns synchronously 
reigning in the year 1201, winds up in a curious way with 
' John de Courcy reigning in Ulster'. This has the air of 
being a court sarcasm current at the time. 

^ Roger de Hoveden, iv, 176 ; Ann. Loch Ce, Ann. 
Inisfallen (DubHn), Ann. Ulster, 1201 ; cf. Ann. Clonmac- 
nois, 1200, and Four Masters, 1199. The true date seems 
to be 1201. 2 Rot. Pat., 4 John, m. 11 (p. 15 b). 


a battle at Downpatrick, and banished him 
from his lordship.^ In September a safe-conduct 
was issued to him to go to the king and return 
' if he does not make peace with us '.^ Appar- 
ently he gave hostages at this time and under- 
took to go to the king, but failed to perform his 
undertaking. On the 31st of August, 1204, the 
king ordered Meiler Fitz Henry and Walter de 
Lacy to summon John de Courcy to come forth- 
with to the king's service, ' as he had sworn and 
given hostages to do ', and in default to con- 
fiscate his lands.^ Probably the list of his 
hostages entered on the Patent Roll for the 6th 
John are those referred to. The names are those 
of his principal vassals or their sons.* At the 

1 Arm. Loch Ce, Ann. Clonmacnois, Four Masters, 1203, 
Ann. Ulster, 1204. 2 Rot. Pat., 5 John, m. 6 (p. 34 b). 

3 Pat. Roll, 6 John, m. 9 (p. 45). 

* Pat. Roll, 6 John, m. 1 dors (p. 55 b). The names are 
Milo, son of John de Courcy juvenis ; Robin, son of William 
Salvage ; John de Courcy, son of Roger of Chester ; Wilkin, 
son of Augustine de Ridal ; Peter, son of Wilham Haket ; 
Alexander, son of WilUam Sarazein ; John, son of Adam 
the chamberlain ; John, son of Richard Fitz Robert. Of 
these names the following appear as witnesses to John de 
Courcy's charter granting full jurisdiction over their men 
and tenements to the prior and monks of the church of 
Down : Wilham Savage, Roger of Chester, WiUiam Hacket, 
Wilham Saracen, Adam the chamberlain, and Richard 
Fitz Robert : Pat. RoU, 42 Ed. 111. Milo, son of John de 
Courcy, is supposed by Lodge to have been son of the 
conqueror of Ulster and ancestor of the Earls of Kinsale. 
He may have been son of John, son of Roger of Chester. 


same time the king ordered all the barons of 
Ulster, who had pledged their oaths and given 
hostages for John de Courcy, to cause their 
lord to come to the king's service, and threatened 
in default to betake himself to their hostages 
and their fiefs. ^ John de Courcy must have 
still proved contumacious. A new expedition 
was made by Hugh de Lacy, apparently in 
September; a battle was fought, and John de 
Courcy was taken prisoner. He was, however, 
permitted to go free, according to one account, 
' on being crossed to go to Jerusalem '. He 
appears, however, to have gone to Tirowen 
instead.^ On the 21st of October a new safe- 
conduct was given to him to Mid-Lent,^ and 
this was afterwards extended till Easter, but 
there is nothing to show that he availed himself 
of it. The forfeiture was at last deemed com- 
Hugh de plete, and Hugh de Lacy got his reward. On 
Ivelted ^he 29th of May, 1205, the king granted to Hugh 
Earl of (Je Lacy all the land of Ulster, whereof the king 
belted him earl, to hold of the king in fee as 
John de Courcy held it on the day when Hugh 
conquered and took him prisoner in the field, 

1 Pat. Roll, 6 John, m. 9 (p. 45 b). 

2 Ann. Loch Ce, 1204. In the Ann. Clonmacnois and 
Four Masters (1204) and Ann. Ulster (1205) it is stated that 
he sought protection in Tirowen — a further indication 
that there was a party which favoured him there. 

3 Pat. Roll, 6 John, m. 7 (p. 47) and m. 4 (p. 50). 


rendering the service of one knight for every 

John de Courcy, however, made a further 
effort to recover his lordship. He appealed to 
the Pope and obtained a worthless mandate 
addressed to the Archbishop of Armagh, the 
Bishop of Down, and the Abbot of Ines, to order 
Hugh de Lacy, if he had unjustly made war 
against John, to restore what he had taken.^ 
He obtained more tangible assistance from his Joh" dp 

^ _ Courcy s 

brother-in-law Reginald, King of Man and the last 
Isles, and, having collected a large host and 
a fleet of one hundred ships, he landed at 
Strangford harbour and proceeded to lay siege 
to ' the castle of Rath '. This castle has been 
identified with the well-known castle of Dun- 
drum,^ the ruins of which include a fine circular 
donjon tower built on a platform of rock, and 
possibly dating from John de Courcy' s time. 
It guards the only practicable approach by land 
into Lecale, and hence the importance of securing 

1 Rot. Chart., 7 Jolm, p. 151 ; Rot. Pat., 6 John, p. 54. 
A httle later (June 30) the king bade Meiler Fitz Henry 
place confidence in the representations of Hugh de Lacy, 
now sent by the king as a sort of coadjutor. The justiciar 
was not to wage war against the marchers except by advice 
of Walter and Hugh de Lacy and of the other subjects of 
the king whose fidelity and service are necessary to main- 
tain war. 

2 Papal Letters (Bhss), vol. i, Kal. Jul. 1205. 

^ Joum. R. S. A. I. 1909, pp. 23-9. It may, however, be 
doubted whether the circular keep was introduced so early. 


it at once. The castle, however, was apparently 
too strong to be taken by assault, and John 
commenced the tardier operations of a siege. 
The effort was of no avail. Walter de Lacy 
came with a large army and dispersed the 
invading force. ^ What happened to John de 
Courcy is obscure. He certainly never recovered 
his lordship. There are numerous legends, 
some of them of respectable antiquity,^ but in 
the absence of confirmation we can place no 
reliance upon them. All we know for certain is 
that on the 14th of November, 1207, the king 
granted him licence to come to England and 
remain with his friends, adding that when it 

1 Cliron. Manniae et Insularum, 1204-5 (Manx Society, 
vol. xxii). Reginald, King of Man, is here called John de 
Courcy 's son-in-law {gener). He was his brother-in-law. 

2 The oldest form in which these stories have reached us 
is to be found in the Laud MS. Annals (printed Chart. 
St. Mary's Abbey, Dublin, vol. ii, pp. 308-10), a transcript 
dating from the fifteenth century. According to this it 
would appear that John de Courcy was captured by Hugh 
de Lacy in 1204 and thrown into prison. Afterwards King 
John sent for him to fight a duel as his champion against 
the champion of the King of France. The latter, however, 
hearing of de Courcy's prowess, dechned the combat. The 
two kings, after witnessing a proof of de Courcy's extra- 
ordinary strength, rewarded him, and John gave him 
back his lordship of Ulster. Accordingly de Courcy made 
fifteen attempts to land in Ireland, but failed each time 
through contrary winds. He then, after staying a while 
with the monks of Chester, returned to France, where 
he died. 


was the king's pleasure he should no longer 
remain the king would give him forty days' 
notice.^ Probably John de Courcy accepted 
this permission and became reconciled with the 
king, as it seems that the king afterwards made 
use of his services. For, as we shall see, when 
King John came to Ireland in 1210, fulminating 
wrath and destruction on Hugh de Lacy and 
all his kith and kin, he seems to have brought 
John de Courcy with him, and to have employed 
him specially to bring into captivity some of 
the fugitives from Carrickfergus. And again 
at a later period, on the 20th of June, 1216, 
just at the moment when Louis of France, to 
whom London had opened its gates, was 
besieging Winchester, John issued a mandate 
to all his constables to aid John de Courcy and 
his followers in annoying the king's enemies and 
in securing any booty he might acquire from 
them.^ This mandate can hardly refer to any one 
but the former lord of Ulster. There is some 
evidence that early in the reign of Henry III 
some of his English lands were restored to him ; ^ 

1 Rot. Pat., 9 John, p. 77. 

2 Rot. Pat., 18 John, m. 7. 

3 Rot. Claus., 2 Hen. Ill, m. 15 dors (p. 376), where his 
name occurs in a hst apparently of those who had returned 
to their allegiance, and to whom seisin of their lands was 
to be given. See Mr. Round's article in the Diet. Nat. 
Biog., and cf. the curious certificate given by Hen. Ill in 
1251, Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, no. 3202. 


but he must have died before the 22nd of Sep 
tember, 1219, when a mandate was issued to the 
justiciar of Ireland to cause Affreca, wife of the 
late John de Courcy, to have dower out of the 
tenements of her late husband.^ 

John de Courcy left no legitimate offspring,- 
and no records are forthcoming to connect him 
with the Patrick de Courcy who appears in 1221 
as a tenant-in-chief in Cork,^ and who may be 
regarded as a progenitor of the long line of 
barons of Kinsale. Some relationship between 
the two is very probable, though on this point 
history is mute. But history is not mute as to 
the effect of John de Courcy's rule in Uladh. 
From his time and to his orderly rule we may 
trace the early prosperity of Eastern Ulster * ; 
and this prosperity, though in after ages nearly 
destroyed, was never wholly lost. 

1 Rot. Claus., 3 Hen. Ill, p. 401 b. 

2 Gir. Camb. v 409 (written c. 1210). 
^ See supra, p. 49. 

4 Few monetary records survive ; but in 1226, though 
following on a disturbed period, the sums received from the 
baiUwicks of Antrim, Carrickfergus, the Ards, Blathewic 
(Lr. Castlereagh), and Lecale, amounted to £936. Rot. 
Claus., 11 Hen. Ill, p. 205. Thirty-six years later the sum 
of £464 was received by the Crown from a few manors in 
the northern part of County Antrim : Facsimiles Nat. 
MSS. Irel, pt. ii, pi. 73. 



While throughout the eastern half of Ireland 
the inhabitants were everywhere settling down 
peaceably to the new order of things, a forward Forward 
movement was made in Munster which led to mentin 
some desultory fighting, and ultimately to a large i^^ ^^' 
expansion of the area of Anglo-Norman occupa- 
tion. As we have seen, when John came to 
Ireland in 1185 his insolent conduct alienated 
the three great potentates of the west, Dermot 
McCarthy, Donnell O'Brien, and Rory O'Conor, 
and they abstained from doing him homage. 
At this time, it seems, he made what must 
be regarded as ' speculative grants ' of large 
portions of the present County Tipperary to 
Theobald Walter, Philip of Worcester, and 
others. His newly erected castles at Ardfinan, 
Lismore, and Tibberaghny were used as bases for 
expeditions into Munster, which at first appear 
to have met with no success. In 1192, how- 
ever, a new forward movement was made. The 
English advanced as far as Killaloe and a little 
beyond into Thomond, when they were checked 

1226 n K 


by Donnell O'Brien. The expedition, however, 
resulted in the building of the two great mote- 
fortresses of Kilfeacle and Knockgraffon.^ The 
grassy fosse-encircled mounds remain with traces 
of later stone-castles on their summits or in their 
attached baileys, and from the size of the earth- 
works we can judge of their early importance. 
Castle of The mote of Kilfeacle lies close to the road 

Kilfeacle -, r^ ^ ^ 

between Tipperary and Cashel, near the ancient 
church-site, and the castle there was one of 
those restored to William de Burgh in 1203, 
and it became the caput of an important de 
Burgh manor. ^ We may perhaps infer that it 
was William de Burgh who erected it in 1192. 
William This remarkable man, afterwards known to the 
Irish of Connaught as ' William the Conqueror ', 
was brother to Hubert de Burgh, John's faithful 
minister,^ and progenitor of the de Burghs or 
Burkes, earls of Ulster, and of the Burkes of 
Connaught and Munster. He has generally 
been represented by modern writers as the same 

1 Four Masters, 1192 ; Ann. InisfaUen (Dublin MS.), 1192. 
According to the latter annals, in 1196 the castle of KiKeacle 
was destroyed by Donnell mor na Curradh, son of Dermot 
Mc Carthy. But it must have been soon rebuilt again. 

^ Liberate, 5 John, p. 67, and see the extent of the manors 
which belonged to Richard de Burgh in Munster at his death 
(1243) : Inquis. P. M., 27 Hen. Ill, Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, 
no. 2607 ; Cal. Inquis., vol. i, p. 6. 

^ Hubert de Burgh, Earl of Kent, is called by Henry 111 
uncle of Richard de Burgh, Wilham's eldest son : Rot. Pat., 
18 Hen. Ill, m. 3, Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, no. 2217. 


person as William Fitz Audelin, who first came 
to Ireland with Henry II, but for this identifica- 
tion there is no good authority and it must be 
rejected. He held two knights' fees about 
Ardoyne, near Tullow, from Theobald Walter/ 
and it is probable that he came to Ireland with 
John in 1185 and received a grant in Munster ^ 
about the same time as Theobald received his 
large grant there. 

The mote of Knockgraffon lies not far from Castieof 
the Suir above Caher. It is similar in the graffon. 
arrangement of its defences to that at Kil- 
feacle, but is even a finer example. It bears 
traces of a stone building on its summit, and the 
remains of a stone castle in its bailey. Save 
for the neighbouring ruins of a church with some 
Early English features, it rises lonely from the 
swelling plain, conspicuous from afar, an im- 
perishable memorial of the expedition of 1192. 

1 Reg. St. Thomas's, p. 104. This grant was before 1202, 
when it was ratified by Giovanni di Salerno, Cardinal 
Legate : ibid., p. 225. 

2 Probably the grant by ' John son of the King of 
England and Duke {dux ?) of Ireland to Wilham de Burgh 
of half a cantred at Tilra'ct in which is Kilsela to be holden 
by the service of two knights ' (H. M. C, 3rd Rep., p. 231), 
means the half -cantred containing Kjlsheelan, near Tibract, 
i.e. John's castle, now written Tibberaghny. Both Kil- 
sheelan (written Kilsilan) and Tiperacht were de Burgh 
manors (Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, no. 2607). The latter 
was granted to de Burgh in 1200 ; Rot. Chart., 2 John, 
p. 7 b. 



In 1202 it belonged to Philip of Worcester,^ and 
perhaps it was for him it was erected. 
Friendly Some arrangement seems to have been made 
with with Donnell O'Brien, as in the next year 
O'Brien. (1193) he is Said to have consented to the 
erection of the castle of Briginis in Thomond 
' for the purpose of distressing Mac Carthy \^ 
The hereditary hatred of the Dalcassians for the 
Eoghanachts was stronger than any jealousy of 
the progress of the invader. Indeed, there are 
other grounds for thinking that friendly rela- 
tions were formed with the house of O'Brien 
at this time. William de Burgh is stated by 
an early Irish genealogist to have married one 
of Donnell O'Brien's daughters,^ and as Richard 
de Burgh, the eldest son of this union, appears 
to have come of age in 1214,* the marriage must 
have taken place in 1193 at latest. Like Hugh 
de Lacy in Meath and John de Courcy in Ulster, 
William de Burgh by this alliance undoubtedly 
strengthened his position in Munster. 

Next year (1194) Donnell O'Brien died. He 

1 Eot, Pat., 4 John, m. 10 (p. 16). For the mote of 
Knockgraffon see Journ. R. S. A. I. 1909, p. 275. 

2 Ann. InisfaUen (Dublin MS.), 1193. 

3 See the Tribes of Hy Manj^ (ed. O'Donovan), p. 45, 
a tract from the Book of Leacan, a compilation (from earHer 
sources) of about the year 1418. 

■* On the 11th July in this year John ordered seisin to be 
given to Richard de Burgh of his land in Ireland : Rot. Pat., 
16 John, p. 118 b. 


had been King of Thomond and the most Death of 
powerful prince in Munster from the first com- oSll 
ing of the Normans to Ireland. His marriage i^^^- 
with a daughter of Dermot Mac Murrough, his 
hereditary feud with the house of 0' Conor 
in Connaught and with the race of Eoghan in 
Munster, made him in general friendly to the 
invaders, except when they carried their aggres- 
sion beyond Leinster and seemed to threaten 
Thomond. Then he more than once sternly and 
successfully repelled them. But towards the close 
of his career he seems to have entered into those 
closer relations with the English of Munster which 
formed a marked feature in the policy of his sons. 

The succession to the throne of Thomond now Succes- 
becomes somewhat obscure, probably because ^Hhe 
no successor was universallv recognized. We l^o"eof 

•^ * Thomond. 

hear repeatedly of three sons of Donnell O'Brien, 
viz. Donough Cairbrech, Murtough Finn, and 
Conor Roe. One annalist tells us that Donough 
Cairbrech was made king by the English,^ but 
it is probable that he was not accepted as such 
by the Irish of Thomond. The Four Masters 
state that Murtough O'Brien, son of the late 
king, ' assumed his father's place,' using a phrase 
which implies that he was not formally chosen 
by the tribesmen. At any rate, for some years 
we find the three brothers acting in harmony 
with each other and with the English, until 

1 Ann. Inisfallen (Dublin MS.), 1194. 


in 1203 Conor Roe was slain by Murtough Finn.^ 
In 1208 Murtough himself ' was taken prisoner 
by the English of Limerick in violation of the 
guarantee of three bishops and by order of his 
own brother Donough Cairbrech '.^ In 1210, 
however, ' Mariadac ', King of Limerick, is 
mentioned in an English Roll,^ and this name 
represents Murtough. He died in 1239, but from 
about 1210 up to his death in 1242 Donough 
Cairbrech seems to have been king. There were 
other rivals to the throne, however, not sons of 
Donnell O'Brien, but with rights of seniority. 
Two of these were got out of the way at once by, 
or in the interests of, Murtough Finn. Donough, 
son of the late king's elder brother, was killed,* 
and Murtough, representative of the senior line 
traced from Murtough Mor, King of Munster, 
was blinded and otherwise incapacitated from 
ruling.^ The following table will make the 
relationship clearer, and will serve to indicate the 
ruthless way in which the claims of seniority were 
from time to time met by the house of O'Brien. 

1 Ann. Loch Ce, 1203. 

2 Four Masters, Ann. Clonmacnois, 1208, 

3 Rot. de Prestito, 12 John, p. 196. 

4 Four Masters, 1194. 

5 Ann. Ulster, Ann. Loch Ce, Ann. Boyle, 1194. John 
O'Donoghue, in his Historical Memoirs of the O'Briens, 
makes Murtough Dall or ' the Blind ' the immediate succes- 
sor of Donnell Mor. There may be authority for this, but 
he seems to be mistaken in supposing him to be Donnell's son. 




















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Alliance Whoever is to be regarded as the titular king 
eons of ^ of Thomoiid at this time, the chief power was 
Donneii goon to become centred in WilHam de Burgh. 

Bnen. =» 

It is pretty clear that William and his com- 
panions now, or very soon afterwards, made 
an alliance with his brothers-in-law, the sons 
of Donnell O'Brien. In all probability the 
foreigners were to be allowed to settle in 
Limerick and in the greater part of the kingdom 
south of the Shannon (mainly at the expense 
of the Eoghanachts), in return for their sup- 
porting the claims of Donnell O'Brien's sons 
to the kingship of Thomond, as against the 
representatives of elder branches of the house, 
and in return for protection against the inter- 
ference of the O' Conors. That there was some 
such treaty or arrangement the events of the 
next few years seem to show. 

At first sight these events as recorded in the 
Irish annals present a tangled skein, hard to un- 
ravel, and even after patient study we cannot be 
quite sure that we follow all the threads correctly. 
The bare fact of an incursion is mentioned 
without motive assigned, and sometimes the 
statement is so meagre that it is not easy to 
assign either cause or consequence. Two results 
are, however, plain enough from the clearer light 
of slightly subsequent English records : first, 
that before the close of the century the town of 
Limerick was finally occupied by the Anglo- 


Normans, and henceforth became an Enghsh 
town ; secondly, that the Anglo-Norman settle- 
ment and feudal organization soon extended 
over the greater part of the present counties of 
Limerick and Tipperary. 

Interpreting the annalistic records as best we 
can in the light of established facts, the course 
of events seems to have been as follows : — 

The year after Donnell O'Brien's death 'Philip Philip 
of Worcester came to Ireland to reinforce the cester. 
English of Munster '.^ Ten years previously he 
had been with John in Ireland as justiciar, and 
he appears to have been again sent over to take 
the fief of Meath into the king's hand on Hugh 
de Lacy's death. The large grant which Philip 
had probably already received about Knock- 
graffon in Southern Tipperary supplied a per- 
sonal motive for his interference, but we may be 
sure he did not come without John's assent and 
encouragement. William de Burgh was already 
in Munster, and the disputed succession to the 
throne of Thomond gave the adventurers an 
opportunity of making a bargain with the sons 
of Donnell O'Brien as the price of their support. 
The latter, at any rate, made no opposition to 
the renewed activity of the settlers in Munster, 

1 Ann. Inisfallen (Dublin MS.), 1 195. Philip of Worcester 
is said to have founded the Benedictine Priory of Kilcumin 
(Kilcommon near Caher, co. Tipperary ?), c. 1184 (Harris), 
but the date is probably too early. 


but the King of Connaught thought fit to inter- 
Raid of fere. ' Cathal Crovderg 0' Conor and Mac Cos- 

Cathal , . r 

Crovderg. tello, with some of the English and Irish of 
Meath, marched into Munster until they reached 
Emly and Cashel, and they burned four large 
castles and some small ones.' ^ This raid, which 
appears to have been quite unprovoked, was 
primarily directed against William de Burgh, 
Philip of Worcester, and their companions, 
whose encroachment so near his southern border 
Cathal no doubt viewed with concern. But 
Cathal probably also meant to assert the ancient 
supremacy of Connaught over Munster. Very 
r-ih ri significant, too, is the part played by ' Mac 
Nangie. CostcUo '. We havc known him hitherto as 
Gilbert de Nangie, or de Angulo, to whom Hugh 
de Lacy had given the barony of Morgallion in 
Meath. ^ Gilbert, however, preferred the wild 
ways of the Irish to the more orderly life of 
a feudal baron. In 1193 we find him and his 
band of foreigners joining the Irish in plundering 
Inchcleraun, an island in Lough Ree,^ and next 
year he led an expedition to Assaroe, on the 

1 Four Masters, 1195 ; cf. Ann, Loch Ce, 1195, where 
Mac Costello is said to have been ' apprehended ' [by John 
de Courcy], but the entry is incomplete. 

2 Supra, p. 84. He was called by the Irish GilUpert 
Mac Goisdealbh (son of Jocelin), a name which came to be 
written Mac Costello, and long afterwards the barony of 
Costello in Mayo took its name from the family. 

3 Ann. Loch Ce, 1193. 


border of Tirconnell, but ' without much profit '.^ 
This was presumably on behalf of the King 
of Connaught. At any rate, in 1195 he took 
service under Cathal Crovderg in his raid 
against the Normans in Munster, and for this 
he and probably his brother Philip were out- 
lawed and deprived of their lands in Meath. 
Gilbert seems to have remained permanently in 
Cathal' s service, and was rewarded by a grant 
of the cantred of Maenmagh near Loughrea.^ 
He is an early example of an hibernicized Nor- 
man (or perhaps Fleming), or at least of one 
who cast in his lot with the Irish. 

While Cathal Crovderg was engaged in this 
raid there was also ' a hosting by John de Hosting 
Courcy and the son of Hugh de Lacy [probably deCour"y 
the younger Hugh] to assume power ', we are Lacy^^ 
told, ' over the foreigners of Leinster and 
Munster.'^ The motive assigned is ambiguous, 
but they were probably sent by the government 
to control the operations in Munster. They 
seem to have summoned Cathal to Athlone, 
whither he came with twelve hundred men, and 
the parley, we are simply told, resulted in his 
obtaining peace.* What the terms were we do not 

1 Ann. Loch Ce, 1194. 

2 In 1207 Gilbert was pardoned, and the cantred of 
Maenmagh, given to him by the king of Connaught, was 
confirmed to him : Rot. Claus., 8 John, p. 78 b. 

3 Ann. Loch Ce, Ann. Ulster, Four Masters, 1195. 

4 Ann. Loch Ce, 1195. 


knoAV, but he was probably recognized as King of 
Connaught on the promise of not interfering any 
more in Munster, and of good behaviour generally. 
At any rate, he committed no further depredation 
on the English for the next four years. 

At some time, however, during the reign of 
Richard I, John appears to have made a specu- 
lative grant of the whole or part of Connaught 
to William de Burgh,^ who in his turn made 
a similar grant of ten cantreds in the north of 
Connaught to Hugh de Lacy.^ This latter grant 
may have supplied the motive for Hugh de Lacy's 
hosting at this time, and the services of John 
de Courcy may have been similarly enlisted. 
To these grants we shall recur, but for the time, 
at any rate, they were inoperative, and were 
held in suspense by the peace of Athlone. 
Limerick The city of Limerick, captured, relieved, and 
evacuated by Raymond le Gros twenty years 
previously, was now in Norman hands, and 
apparently with the consent of the O'Briens. 
Next year indeed we are told that Donnell, son 

^ John's grant to William de Burgh is referred to in his 
subsequent grant to Richard de Burgh (September 13, 
1215) of 'all the land of Connaught wliich WiUiam, his 
father, held of the King ' : Rot. Chart., 17 John, p. 218 b. 

2 Gormanston Register, f. 189. These cantreds were 
the Three Tuatha (Four Masters, 1189, note), Moylurg and 
TirerriU as one cantred, Corran, Carbury-Drumchff, Tir- 
eragh on the Moy, the two cantreds of Tirawley, Erris, 
Leyney, and SHeve-Lugha (south of Leyney). 



of Dermot Mc Carthy, defeated the foreigners 
and afterwards expelled them from Limerick.^ 
Whatever opposition there was came from the 
Eoghanachts. But the expulsion can only have 
been for the moment. Soon afterwards, pro- 
bably in 1197, we fuid Hamo de Valognes, 
the justiciar, in Limerick, making grants of 
burgages in that town to the leaders of the 
forward movement, to whom he probably at 
the same time made the large grants of lands 
in the neighbouring districts which were con- 
firmed by King John in 1199.^ Indeed we know 
that John, before coming to the throne, and 
probably in 1197, granted to Hamo himself 
* two cantreds in Hochenil (Ir. Ui Conaill) in the 
land of Limerick ',^ and about the same time he 
gave a charter to the city of Limerick conferring 
on the citizens all the liberties and free customs 
enjoyed by the citizens of Dublin.* He also 

1 Ann. Ulster, Four Masters, 1196 ; Ann. Loch Ce, 1195. 
It is probably to this temporary loss of Limerick that some 
fourteenth-century MSS. of the Expugnatio Hibernica refer : 
[urbs Limiricensis] ' longe post sub Hamone de Valoingnes 
justitiario fraudulenter destructa et per Meilerium recu- 
perata' : RoUs ed., p. 342. 

2 King John's grants in 1199 refer to previous grants by 
Hamo of burgages in Limerick, and appear to be con- 

^ See John's confirmatory grant. Rot. Chart., 1 John, 
p. 19. 

4 Rot. Cancellarie Cal. (Tresham), p. 5, no. 13, and 
Chartae Priv. et Immun., p. 36. 


appears to have granted to Walter de Lacy a 
messuage in Limerick and three knights' fees in 
the cantred which he retained for his own use, 
i. e. that near Limerick.^ 

How, or exactly when, the Normans obtained 
possession of the city of Limerick we are not 
told. We hear of neither siege nor capture, nor 
of warfare of any sort. Irish annalists are more 
ready to record and even magnify the defeats and 
disasters of the foreigners than to mention the 
stages of their advance. Thus they leave us 
here to infer that the Normans had got possession 
of Limerick from the statement that in 1196 
Donnell Mc Carthy drove them out. 
Limerick It must be bornc in mind that Limerick, 
man city, though in general politically subject to the King 
of Thomond, was still essentially an Ostman city. 
Its inhabitants in 1 157, and again in 1 171, are 
called Galls or Foreigners by the Foiu* Masters ; 
its first four bishops appear to have been of 
Scandinavian extraction ; the surrounding dis- 
trict on both sides of the river was ' the cantred 
of the Ostmen ' ; the first provost of the city 
under its new charter was Syward, presumably 
an Ostman ; and we shall find Ostmen jurors 
serving on the inquisition as to the lands of 
St. Mary's Church. It is probable that soon 
after the death of Donnell O'Brien the Ostmen 
of Limerick transferred their allegiance to the 
^ Gormanston Register, f. 5 dors. 


Normans, to whom they were more akin, not 
only in race, but in habits and customs, than 
they were to the Irish. Probably, too, the sons 
of Donnell O'Brien, in return for Norman sup- 
port, acquiesced in the Norman occupation of 
the town, as they appear to have subsequently 
acquiesced in the Norman occupation of the 
kingdom south of the Shannon. The immediate 
granting of a charter to Limerick similar to that 
given to Dublin in 1192 is a clear indication that 
Limerick was occupied by agreement and not 
by force, and at a later period, about 1210, we 
find forty carucates of land, part no doubt of ' the 
cantred of the Ostmen ', secured to the citizens 
in burgage tenure.^ 

Indeed in the year 1197 the new settlers seem joint 
to have endeavoured to carry out their part of tSTinto 
the bargain with the O'Briens. ' Donough Cair- Thomond. 
brech brought the English into Thomond, where 
they slew Covey Macnamara, Conor O'Quin, and 
many others.' ^ Macnamara (Mac Conmara) was 
by hereditary right the chieftain to inaugurate 
the O'Brien, and O'Quin was a neighbouring 
chieftain. We cannot be far wrong in supposing 
that the object of this expedition was to force 
the tribes there to accept Donough Cairbrech as 
king and to inaugurate him in due form on the 
sacred mound of Magh Adhair. Whether the 

1 Rot. Chart., 17 John, p. 211. 

2 Annals of I'nisfallen (DubUn MS.), 1197. 



object was then effected or not, the grants of 
lands on both sides of the Shannon showered at 
this time on the leaders of the forward movement, 
and confirmed and perhaps added to by King 
John in 1199, were probably made with the con- 
sent of Donnell O'Brien's sons and at the cost of 
the Eoghanachts and other recalcitrant chief- 
Feud tains. That the hereditary enmity of the Dal- 
the Dai- cassians to the Eoghanachts had not at this time 
cas^ians (Jiminished in fervour we have clear evidence. 
Eugeni- Ij^ J178 Donnell O'Brien had driven the greater 
part of the race of Eoghan out of his kingdom ; 
and, in particular, the O'Coilens of Lower Con- 
nello and the O' Donovans of the valley of the 
Maigue were forced to fly southwards over 
Mangerton mountain.^ Some of the Eoghanachts 
still remained or had returned, and in 1199 ' the 
whole country along the Shannon was laid waste 
by a great war between English and Irish '.^ 
If we may trust a late Irish writer,^ Coilen 
O'Coilein, chief of Ui Conaill Gabhra, was killed 
at this time by the seed of Maurice Fitz Gerald. 
In the ensuing year (1200) ' a great army was 
mustered by William de Burgo and all the 

1 Annals of Inisf alien (DubHn MS.). See the passage 
quoted and commented on by O'Donovan, Four Masters, 
1178, note m ; and cf. the Bodleian Ann. Inisf alien, 1175, 

2 Ibid., 1199. 

3 Michael O'Clery (one of the * Four Masters '), in his 
Book of Pedigrees ; see Joum. R. S. A. I. 1879-82, p. 225. 


English of Munster, joined by Murtough Finn, 
Conor Roe, and Donough Cairbrech, the three 
sons of Donnell Mor O'Brien, and they marched 
through Munster to Cork. They encamped for 
a week at Kinneigh, where Auliffe Mor 0' Dono- 
van and Mac Costello were slain. Then came 
Mahon O'Heynie, the Pope's Legate, and the 
bishops of Munster, and made peace between the 
O'Briens [on the one side] and the Mac Carthys 
O'Donohoes and the rest of the Eugenians [on 
the other].' ^ 

This helps us to understand how so much of 
the present county of Limerick was ready to 
receive new rulers. Lower Connello and the 
valley of the Maigue, territories of the O'Coilens 
and 0' Donovans respectively, were among the 
first districts settled. 

We have now reached the time when, with the 
beginning of John's reign, our regular records 
commence, in a stream thin at first, but gradually 
increasing in volume. Henceforth we are able 
to check, interpret, and supplement the Irish 
annals and English chronicles by a more authori- 
tative source. In particular we are enabled to 
gain some idea of the extent of the new settle- 
ment of the Normans in the counties of Limerick 
and Tipperary about the year 1200, and to trace 
the beginnings of the more important manors 

1 Aim. Inisfallen (Dublin MS.), 1200. 

1226 II L 


In September 1199, when Philip Augustus 

was commencing hostiUties against John, the 

Enfeoff- latter at Rouen and other places in Normandy 

nient or x ^ 

Limerick, made a number of grants of lands within the 
kingdom of Limerick on both sides of the 
Shannon. In most cases a grant of one or more 
burgages in the town of Limerick was also made, 
and these burgages are stated to have been 
already delivered to the grantees by Hamo de 
Valognes, when justiciar. We may infer that the 
grants themselves were really confirmatory of 
what had already been done in John's name by 
Hamo a year or two earlier. It is hard to identify 
some of the Irish place-names, disguised as they 
are by the strange spelling and positive blunders 
of scribes and transcribers. To attempt to do 
so in all cases would involve an unduly minute 
investigation, and we shall content ourselves 
with mentioning only such grants as seem to 
have been the origin of the more famous manors 
of later times. 

Hamo de To Hamo de Valognes himself John confirmed 
his grant of ' two cantreds in Hochenil in the 
land of Limerick ', to hold by the service of ten 
knights.^ The tribal territory designated appears 
to have included the whole western half of the 
present county, but Hamo's two cantreds were 
probably comprised in the present baronies of 

^ Rot. Chart., 1 John, p. 19. ' Hochenil ' represents the 
Irish Ui Conaill or Ui Conaill Gabhra : Topogr. Poems, p. 1 16. 



Upper and Lower Connello. A kite-shaped 
island in the river Deel, two miles from its 
source, was chosen by Hamo as the seat of his 
principal manor, and here in 1199 he built the 
castle of AsKEATON.^ There is a rocky platform 
with precipitous sides in the middle of the 
island, and on this the ruined keep and inner 
ward of a later castle stand. This was no doubt 
the site of Hamo's castle. He was superseded as 
justiciar by Meiler Fitz Henry, but he got letters 
of protection and a special licence to colonize 
his lands.^ In 1203, presumably after Hamo's 
death or forfeiture, John ordered the castle to 
be delivered to William de Burgh.^ In 1207 
Hamo's land and castles were restored to his 
son and heir Hamo, at the time a minor,* and 
in 1215 seisin was given to him.^ All through 
the thirteenth century a Hamo de Valognes was 
a tenant-in-chief in Limerick,^ but about the 

^ Ann. Inisfallen (Dublin MS.), 1199. Askeaton repre- 
sents the Irish Eas Geibhtine,'' the cataract of G.' — probably 
a man's name. In early records the castle is generally 
called Iniskefty (variously disguised), pointing, in an earlier 
stage of phonetic rendering, to Inis Geibhtine. 

2 Rot. Chart., 2 John, p. 96 b. 

^ Liberate, 5 John, p. 67. 

* Rot. Claus., 9 John, p. 96 b. At this time the custody 
was given to Hugh de Neville. 

^ Rot. Pat., 17 John, p. 147. 

6 In the time of Edward I, Hamund de Valoniis owed 
eight services to the Crown ; Irish Exchequer Memoranda, 
Eng. Hist. Rev. 1903, p. 506. 



middle of the next century the manor of Askeaton 
passed to the Earl of Desmond. The first Hamo 
appears to have granted the church of Askeaton 
(with others) to the abbey of Keynsham in Somer- 
set,^ and, as we have seen,^ it was apparently with 
one knight's fee at Culballysiward and a tene- 
ment at Bruree, that he compensated Archbishop 
Cumin for the injuries he had done to him. 

Three of the sons of Maurice Fitz Gerald 
shared in the exploitation of the land of Limerick, 
as they had, doubtless, shared in subduing such 
Thomas chieftains as resisted. Thomas, son of Maurice, 
Maurice. ^^^ recognized as the progenitor of the House 
of Desmond, was probably granted at this time 
the lands which were afterwards known as 
the cantred of Shanid, and there can be little 
doubt that the castle-crowned mote of Shanid, 
long afterwards called ' Desmond's first and most 
ancient house ', represents the seat of the manor 
created at this time.^ His son John Fitz Thomas 
granted the church of ' Senode ' (Shanid) to the 

^ Black Book of Limerick, no. Iv (p. 47), to be read with 
no. xcv (p. 84). 

2 Swpra, p. 132, note. 

^ In the Charter Roll, 1 John, p. 19 b, is a grant to Thomas 
son of Maurice of ' five knights' fees in the thwedum [Irish, 
Tiiath] of Eleuri and cantred of Fontimel'. The position 
of this cantred is, however, doubtful. I have attempted to 
show that it may have included Shanid (Journ. R. S. A. I. 
1909, pp. 34-9). In any case the manor of Shanid was held 
in chief by John Fitz Thomas, and the original grant pro- 
bably dates from his father's time. 


church of St. Mary of Limerick/ and held the 
cantred called Shennede of the king in chief.^ 
From him it descended to Thomas, son of 
Maurice (Fitz Gerald), the justiciar, who died in 
1298.^ Probably about the same time the first- Gerald 
named Thomas's brother Gerald, who married Maurice. 
the daughter of Hamo de Valognes, and was 
ancestor of the earls of Kildare, obtained 
Croom, in the valley of the Maigue.* It was 
held by his successors until forfeited by Silken 
Thomas in the sixteenth century. These two 
castles supplied the war-cries of the two houses — 
' Shanid aboo ! ' and ' Crom aboo ! ' — and each 
became the nucleus of several additional manors 
acquired from time to time. A third brother, 
William of Naas, was granted the castle of William 
Carrickittle in the parish of Kilteely, with 
five knights' fees near the castle.^ Near the 
village of Kilteely there was a remarkable rock 
(now mostly quarried away) rising sheer out of 
the plain, on which the earl of Kildare built 

1 Black Book of Limerick (ed. Mac Caffrey), p. 114. 

2 Cal. Inquis. P. M., Ed. I, vol. ii, p. 252. 

3 Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. iv, pp. 260, 340. 

4 In 1215, when Gerald's son Maurice came of age, he 
obtained seisin of his father's lands and of the castle of 
Crumeth (Croom) of his inheritance : Rot. Pat., 17 John, 
p. 147. 

5 Rot. Chart., 1 John, p. 196. David, third Baron of 
Naas, gave all his land of "Karkytil' to his daughter 
Matilda in frank marriage with John Pincema : Gor- 
manston Register, f. 192 dors. 


a castle in 1510. This was presumably the site 
of the twelfth-century castle. 

William de Burgh had lands about Kilfeakle 
in the barony of Clanwilliam, County Tipperary. 
Here, as we have seen, a mote-castle was erected 
in 1192, and near at hand he founded the Augus- 
tinian priory of Athassel, about the year 1200.^ 
Extensive ruins of this priory remain and attest 
its former magnificence. The main building 
has been assigned on architectural grounds to 
the middle of the thirteenth century.^ The 
manor of Kilsheelan, too, on the Suir below 
Clonmel, where a mote marks the castle site, 
probably belonged to William de Burgh from 
even an earlier period,^ and both it and Kilfeakle 
were important manors of his son Richard.* 
In 1199 John gave William de Burgh Ardpatrick 
with part of the cantred of Fontimel.^ This is 
supposed to refer to the place now known as 
Knockpatrick, in the parish of Robertstown, 

1 Ware. In 1206 King John confirmed the prior and 
canons in their possessions, without the demesne of WiUiam 
de Burgh, and granted them protection : Rot. Chart., 7 John, 
p. 165. 

2 See Paper by Dr. Cochrane, Journ. R. S. A. I. 1909, 
pp. 279-89. 

^ The grant by ' John son of the King of England and Duke 
of Ireland to William de Burgh of half a cantred at Tilra'ct in 
which is Kilsela, to be holden by the service of two knights' 
(H. M. C. 3rd Rep., p. 231), probably refers to Kilsheelan. 

4 Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, nos. 2422, 2607. 

5 Rot. Chart., 1 John, p. 19 b. 


north of Shanid. A castle is said to have been 
built at Ardpatrick in 1198,* but nothing else is 
known to connect the de Burghs with the place. 
Perhaps it was forfeited by William de Burgh 
along with other lands in 1203, and not restored.^ 
In the year 1201 John is said to have given 
the tuath of Castleconaing (Castleconnell) to 
William de Burgh, ' yet so that if he shall 
fortify the castle, and we shall desire to have it 
in our own hands, we shall give him a reasonable 
exchange for it.^ The castle here was built on 
an isolated flat-topped rock, close to the Shannon, 
above Limerick. The manor belonged to William 
de Burgh's descendants for many centuries. At 
least one other manor in the County Limerick 
belonged to William de Burgh. This was the 
manor of Esclon * (Ir. Aes Cluana), a district 
now comprised in the parish of Kilkeedy,^ in 

1 Ware's Annals, 1198. There is another Ardpatrick 
near Kilmallock. 

2 Robert de Guher had a castle not far off from quite 
early in the thirteenth century. 

3 Ware's Annals, and Ann. Inisfallen (Dublin MS.), 1201. 
It was probably the site of an Irish fortress. According to 
the Four Masters it was ' at their own house at Caislen ui 
Conaing ' that Donnell O'Brien blinded two of his rivals to 
the throne, in 1175. 

* William de Burgh made a grant of some lands of his 
fee of Escluona to Donatus O'Brien, Bishop of Limerick, 
ob. 1207 ; Black Book of Limerick, p. 110. 

^ ' Ecclesia de Escluana alias Kylkyde cuius Rector est 
prior de Athissell ' : Taxation, 1418, Black Book of Limerick, 
p. 146. 


the barony of Pubblebriaii. The ' castle of 
Askelon ' (under which more famihar title that 
of Aes Cluana first appears) was ' restored ' to 
Richard de Burgh in 1215/ and the manor 
appears afterwards as belonging to him and his 
descendants, earls of Ulster. In all probability 
the castle-site was that well known as Carrigogun- 
nell (properly Carraig ui gCoinnell, or the ' Rock 
of the O'Connells ') though in the thirteenth 
century the castle is nearly always called, from 
the district or manor, the ' Castle of Esclon '.^ 

1 Rot. Pat., 17 John, p. 147 b, where it appears as 
' Askelon '. 

2 Mr. Westropp, however, thinks that the two castles 
were distinct (see his Paper, showing great research, on 
Carrigogunnell Castle, Journ. R. S. A. I. 1907, pp. 379-82) ; 
but his principal argument against their identity, viz. that 
' Carrigogunnell was granted in 1209 {sic) to O'Brien, while 
Esclon was held by de Burgo ', loses all force and indeed 
supports the opposite view, when we recollect that the manor 
of Esclon was in John's hand from 1206, when William de 
Burgh died (Rot. Pat., 7 John, p. 60 b),' until 121.3, when 
Richard, his son, came of age and obtained seisin of his 
father's lands (Rot. Pat., 16 John, p. 118 b). This very 
fact would enable John to deal with the castle and manor, 
and in the Annals of Inisfallen, the sole authority for the 
supposed inconsistent ' grant ', it is merely stated that 
Donnough Cairbrech O'Brien at Waterford (i.e. in 1210) 
' received a charter for Carrigogunnell and the lordship there- 
unto belonging, for which he was to pay a yearly rent of sixty 
marks ' (see Four Masters, anno 1209, p. 163, note). John was 
quite capable of making a grant in fee of his minor's pro- 
perty, but after all it appears that he did nothing inconsistent 
with the minor's rights — at least, not by this charter. 


The site — ' a volcanic plateau of trap rock and 
ash falling in low cliffs at nearly every point ' — 
is marked out by nature as the castle-site of the 
district. Indeed, like that of Castleconnell, it 
was probably occupied by a fortress in pre- 
Norman times. No part of the existing building, 
however, is supposed to date from the thirteenth 

Geoffrey de Marisco (or Mareis), who was Geoffrey 
nephew of Archbishop Cumin, and played an Marisco. 
important, but not always creditable, part in 
the affairs of Ireland, had a manor at Anya {Aine, 
now Knockainy), though it is not certain that 
he was the first grantee.^ Near this, at Hospital, 
he founded a preceptory for knights of St. John 
before 1215.^ In 1226 he was granted a fair 
at this manor, and also at Adare on the 
Maigue,^ which may have belonged to him from 
the first. After his outlawry, c. 1236, both 
manors escheated to the CroAvn. Anya was for 

1 Perhaps the grant of ' Katherain ' with ten knights' fees 
to Geoffrey (Rot. Chart., 2 John, p. 80) refers to Aine, but 
the mandate (Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, no. 529) that the men 
of Anya (i.e. the Hospitallers ?) were to hold their lands 
as in the time of William de Lacy seems to imply that the 
latter had been owner. 

■^ Ware's statement to the above effect is partly confirmed 
by the mandate in 1215 that ' the knights of the valley of 
Anya should have their liberty saving a moiety of their 
service to the king ' : Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, no. 673 ; 
cf . nos. 675, 676. 

3 Rot. Claus., 10 Hen. Ill, p. 126. 


some time retained by the king, but Adare soon 

passed to the Fitz Geralds of Offaly. 

Geoffrey Geoffrey Fitz Robert, baron of Kells in 

Fitz ^ -^ 

Robert. Ossory, appears to have been the first grantee 

of the manor of Grene or Esgrene ^ {Aes Greine, 
now Pallas Grean). After his death it came 
into the king's hand, when it was let to the 
Bishop of Emly, who confirmed the gift of the 
church (evidently Geoffrey's gift) to the monas- 
tery of Kells.^ In 1233 the manor was granted 
during pleasure to Maurice Fitz Gerald of Offaly.^ 
About forty yards from the later castle-site 
at Pallas Green is a mote. 

The castles erected by the lords of these 
manors were probably all of the keep and bailey 
plan. Like those found almost universally in 
the earlier settlements in the east of Ireland, 
the works at Shanid and Pallas Green, and 
perhaps at Adare, Aney, and other places, 
included a mote or artificial mound of earth 
as a substratum for the turris or keep. The 
castle-sites at Askeaton, Castleconnell, Esclon 
(Carrigogunnell), and Carrickittle appear to 
have comprised an isolated rock forming a 

1 Register of the Monastery of Kells. In the Charter 
Roll, 1 John, p. 28, is a grant to Geoffrey Fitz Robert of a 
fee of five knights at ' Radhoger ' in the cantred of Huhene 
(Uaithne), which probably included Pallas Grean. 

2 Rot. Glaus., 18 John, p. 279 ; Register of Kells. 

3 Gal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, no. 2045. In 1234 Maurice 
was granted a fair at his manor of Gren : ibid., no. 2182. 


natural substitute for an artificial mound of 
earth. In these cases probably the tower and 
its defences were of stone from the first. In the 
occupation of the kingdom of Limerick south of 
the Shannon the settlers were assisted by the 
O'Briens, and seem to have met with com- 
paratively slight opposition. Hence there was 
the less need of hastily throwing up earthworks. 
Rock-sites suitable to their purposes were often 
at hand, and being able now to obtain the 
skilled labour required and the necessary 
materials they could build more leisurely and 
more effectively in stone. 

The property of the see of Limerick was Church 
respected, and in 1201 an inquisition was held ^^ 
by William de Burgh, who is described as ' Vicar 
of Munster ', as to its lands. This inquisition 
was taken by the oaths of 36 jurors, composed 
of 12 Englishmen, 12 Ostmen, and 12 Irishmen 
(including Conor Roe O'Brien), and was certified 
b}^ Meiler Fitz Henry, the justiciar.^ At this 
time the bishop was Donough or Donatus 
O'Brien, presumably a member of the ruling 
family, who had been appointed about the time 
of the English occupation. John had already 
granted him protection, and the royal letter 
speaks warmly of the bishop's devotion to John's 
interests.^ About the same time the Cistercian 

* Black Book of Limerick, nos. xxiii, xxiv. 

2 Ibid., no. xxxix, apparently before John's accession. 



to Wil- 
liam de 

abbey of Monasteranenagh was confirmed in the 
possession of a long list of lands about Lough 

Other grants were made by King John in 
September 1199, or soon afterwards — some of 
them dealing with lands to the north of the 
Shannon — but those mentioned above were 
historically the most important, and may suffice 
to show the system adopted in the feudaliza- 
tion of North Munster. The whole ' kingdom ' 
was not conveyed in one vast fief to a single 
grantee to be sub-infeudated and organized by 
him, but the land was parcelled out by the 
king himself among a number of tenants-in- 
chief, most of them holding five knights' fees 
or even smaller quantities, and rendering in 
knight-service one-third of that quota to the 

In January 1201, however, John disturbed this 
arrangement, and with his usual capriciousness 
reverted to the former policy of making one 
supreme lord, by granting the honour of Limerick 
to William de Braose.^ William was nephew of 
Philip de Braose, who had been granted the 
' kingdom of Limerick ' by King Henry in 1177, 
but, as we have seen, Philip had failed to 
prosecute his claims, and the grant had been 
treated as lapsed. William de Braose was a great 
landholder in Sussex and Devon, and in the 

1 Rot. Chart., 2 John, p. 78. - Ibid., p. 84 b. 


Breichiniog in Wales. He is represented by 
Giraldus as an excessively pious man, always 
prefacing his actions by saying, ' Let this be 
done in the name of the Lord,' paying his 
clerks extra for concluding his letters with the 
words ' by divine assistance ', and never passing 
a church without saying a prayer.^ Nevertheless, 
this piety did not restrain him from acts of the 
grossest cruelty and treachery, such as the 
massacre of the chieftains of Gwent at Aber- 
gavenny Castle in 1176.^ William de Braose 
was connected with some of the magnates of 
England. Giles, one of his sons, was Bishop of 
Hereford. One of his daughters was married to 
Gruffudd ap Rhys, and another to Walter de 
Lacy. He had been a strong supporter of John's 
succession to the throne, and in the year 1200 
John had granted him all the lands which he had 
acquired, or might in future acquire, from the 
king's enemies of Wales as an increase to his 
barony of Radnor.^ Soon afterwards John 
thought further to reward him and benefit his 
own pocket by the sale to him of the honour of 
Limerick for 5,000 marks, to be paid at the rate 
of 500 marks a year. The honour was co-extensive 
with Henry's grant to Philip de Braose, that is 

1 Gir. Camb. ; Itin. Camb. 

2 Brut y Tywys. 1175, p. 227. Giraldus minimizes the 
connexion of William de Braose with this affair. 

3 Rot. Chart., 2 John, p. 66 b. 


to say, it included the whole ' kingdom of 
Limerick ', and was to be held by the service 
of sixty knights. There were some exceptions 
from the grant. The king retained in his 
demesne the city of Limerick, the gift of bishop- 
rics and abbeys and all royalties, the cantred of 
the Ostmen, and the Holy Island. A special 
exception was made of the lands and tene- 
ments of William de Burgh, who was still in 
favour, and was to continue to hold of the 
king in chief. 
Conse- This grant, as might have been anticipated, 

of this created a flutter among the settlers in North 
''*"*^- Munster. By it Theobald Walter and Philip 
of Worcester, who held vast districts in the 
County Tipperary, and the new grantees other 
than William de Burgh in the County Limerick, 
were deprived of the privileged position of 
tenants-in-chief, and were reduced to the subor- 
dinate status of under-tenants owing fealty to 
William de Braose. Moreover, they w^ould have 
to make terms with their new lord if they 
were to continue to hold their lands. Theobald 
Walter, indeed, procured a contemporaneous 
grant of his lands from William de Braose for the 
sum of 500 marks. By this grant, which is still 
extant, William granted to Theobald five and 
a half cantreds in Munster (being in fact the 
lands which Theobald had previously held under 
John's grant of 1185), to be held of William by 


the service of twenty-two knights.^ Philip of 
Worcester, on the other hand, tried the arbitra- 
ment of the sword,^ and ' a great war broke out ' 
between him and WiUiam de Braose, and 
Magh Feimhin (a plain to the north of the 
Suir, including Knockgraffon) was wasted by 
them.^ Even Meiler Fitz Henry, the justiciar, 
appears to have been reluctant to carry out the 
king's mandates touching the affair of William de 
Braose, until the king summoned him to come 
to him and put the government into commission 
consisting of Humphrey de Tickhill and Geoffrey 
de Costentin/ Then in August 1202, John sent 
a peremptory mandate to Philip of Worcester to 
deliver up to William de Braose all his lands and 
castles, including Knockgraffon, in the honour of 
Limerick.^ Philip probably submitted, as we 
find him in 1207 and afterwards employed by 

1 Facsimiles Nat. MSS. Ireland, vol. ii, no. Ixvii, and see 
supra, p. 102. The parcels were as follows : the burgh of 
Kildelo {Cill da lua, Killaloe) with half the cantred called 
Truoheked Maleth {Triclm ced o m-bloid) in which the burgh 
is situated, and the entire cantred of Elykaruel {Eile 
ui CearbJiaill, the baronies of Clonlisk and Ballybrit, King's 
County), Elyhohogarthy {Eile ui FJwgartaigh, Eliogarty), 
Ewurmun {Oir Mumhan, Orniond), Areth and Wetheni 
{Ara and Uaithne, Ara and OA^Tiey, Tipperary), Owetheniho- 
kathelan {Uaithne ui CatJialain), and Owenihoiffernan 
{Uaithne ui h-Ijearnain) — these two last were districts in 
Owney beg, County Limerick : Topogr. Poems, p. 130. 

- Roger de Hoveden, iv. 153. 

^ Ann. Inisf alien (Dublin MS.). 

4 Rot. Pat., 3 John, p. 4. ^ jbid., 4 John, p. 16 b. 


John in confidential affairs of state,^ and in 1215, 
after the outlawTy of William de Braose, Philip 
was granted five cantreds in Southern Tipperary, 
including the castles of Knockgraffon, Kiltinan, 
and Ardmayle.^ 
Custody With regard to the city of Limerick, John's 
city^of policy was marked by even greater tergiversa- 
Limerick. tion. At first the custody was given to William 
de Burgh, but in the opening years of the 
thirteenth century, as we shall see in the next 
chapter, William de Burgh was actively engaged 
in the affairs of Connaught, and in 1203 came 
to loggerheads with Meiler, the justiciar, and 
fell under the suspicion of the king himself. 
Accordingly, on the 8th of July in this year, 
John gave the custody of Limerick to William 
de Braose at the yearly farm of 100 marks.^ 
Disturbances, however, continued, and on the 
2nd of November, 1204, John ordered Walter 
de Lacy, who acted as bailiff for his father-in- 
law, William de Braose, to deliver up the city 
to Meiler, as the king had been informed (pro- 
bably by Meiler himself) that he could not 
maintain peace in his lands of Connaught and 
Cork, nor rule those lands unless he held in his 
hand the city of Limerick with the cantred * 

1 Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, nos. 377, 379, 385. 

2 Rot. Pat., 17 John, p. 147 b. 

3 Rot. Chart., 5 John, p. 107 ; cf. Ann. Loch Ce, 1203. 

4 Rot. Pat., 6 John, p. 47. 


(of the Ostmen). It is not clear what action, 
if any, was immediately taken under this 
mandate. At any rate, on the 23rd of August, 
1205, John once more gave the custody of 
Limerick to William de Braose.^ At this moment 
the de Lacys were high in favour with the king, 
and Meiler was ordered to wage no war except by 
their advice.^ It was probably in the winter of 
1206-7 that Meiler, son of Meiler Fitz Henry, 
took Limerick by force.^ Hence, it is said, great 
disturbances broke out between Meiler and the 
de Lacys in Meath. Before the 12th of February, 
1207, William de Braose complained that Meiler 
and his son had seized his constablewick (Lime- 
rick), his knights, men, land, and chattels, 
although he had not been wanting in right ; and 
John, with characteristic double-dealing, while 
ordering the knights, land, &c., to be restored, 
directed Meiler to retain the city of Limerick 
if it had been taken into the king's hand,* and 
on the 21st ordered that Meiler' s son should not 

1 Rot. Claus., 7 John, p. 47 b. 2 ibid., p. 40. 

^ Four Masters, 1205 (probably antedated by one year), 
Walter de Lacy appears to have been again baiUff for William 
de Braose in Limerick. See the king's letter to the barons 
of Meath, Feb. 21, 1207 : Rot. Pat., 8 John, p. 69. Up to 
this date the barons had been quiet. 

^ Rot. Claus., 8 John, p. 77 b. A month later the king 
seized Walter de Lacy's castle of Ludlow, and summoned 
him to stand to right in the king's court : Rot. Pat., 8 John, 
pp. 69 b, 70 b. 

1226 II M 


answer for the taking of Limerick except before 
the king.^ It is easy to believe that William 
de Braose did not find his Irish lordship very 
profitable, but he was soon to lose it and every- 
thing else at the hands of his vindictive and 
ruthless master. 

* Rot. Pat., 8 John, p. 69. It is clear that these mandates 
refer to the forcible taking of Limerick by Meiler's son, 
wrongly placed by the Four Masters sub anno 1205. Miss 
Norgate has, I think, here missed the true sequence of 
events : John Lackland, pp. 144-5. 




At the close of the twelfth century, when the 
settlers in the kingdom of Limerick were begin- 
ning to establish their manors, and to extend 
the feudal organization throughout the district, 
the aggressive action of Cathal Crovderg 0' Conor 
and his conflict with his rival, Cathal Carragh, 
afforded at once a pretext and an occasion for 
the interference of the English in Connaught. 
Accordingly the affairs of that province now 
demand our attention. 

Since 1177, when Murrough O'Conor brought Contests 
Miles de Cogan into Connaught ' for evil towards tiuone 
his father ',^ no attempt against the king of that nlu^g^". 
province seems to have been made by the 
English. In 1183 Rory O'Conor, we are told, 
' went on his pilgrimage ' to the monastery of 
Cong and left the sovereignty in the hands of his 
son, Conor Maenmoy.^ Probably the ex-ard-rl 
was forced into this cloistral retirement by the 
more energetic spirit of his son. The latter was 
clearly not disposed to observe the restrictions 

1 Supra, p. 26. 2 Ann. Loch Ce, 1183. 

M 2 


of the treaty of Windsor, and next year we find 
him in company with an O'MelaghHn invading 
Meath and destroying an unnamed castle.^ In 
1185 Rory 'came from his pilgrimage', but, 
like many another king, he found it easier to 
lay aside than to reassume the reins of authority. 
A general war broke out in Connaught among 
the ' roydamnas ' or aspirants to the throne. 
These were Rory himself, Conor Maenmoy and 
Conor O'Dermot (sons of Rory), Cathal Carragh 
(son of Conor Maenmoy), and Cathal Crovderg, 
a younger brother of Rory. Rory obtained the 
assistance of Donnell O'Brien, and the English 
of Munster — assistance which took the form 
of burning and pillaging the churches of the 
west of Connaught. In spite of a patched-up 
peace, Cathal Carragh in retaliation burned and 
plundered Killaloe. Conor Maenmoy, who was 
aided by some English mercenaries, now once 
more assumed the kingship, and next year 
expelled his father from Connaught.^ In 1187 
Conor Maenmoy, anxious probably to secure his 
position by some exploit against the English, 
made an incursion into West Meath, and burned 
and demolished the castle of Killare.^ It was 

1 Ann. Loch Ce, 1184 — if indeed this entry be not 
anticipatory of the destruction of Killare in 1187 (Four 

2 For these events see Ann. Ulster, Ann. Loch Ce, and 
Four Masters, 1185-6. ^ Four Masters, 1187. 


in reply to this attack, and probably with the 
object of reinstating Rory 0' Conor, that next 
year John de Courcy, the justiciar, and the 
Enghsh of Ireland, accompanied by two of 
Rory's sons, made the unsuccessful expedition 
already noticed into Connaught.^ In 1189 Conor 
Maenmoy, who seems to have been a strong 
king, was murdered by his own people at the 
instigation of his brother, Conor O'Dermot.^ 
The Sil Murray, Rory's own tribe, now invited 
Rory to resume the kingship, but his own 
family would not support him. Cathal Crovderg 
must now be regarded as King of Connaught, 
though he was opposed by some influential 
tribesmen, and an attempt by the successor of 
Patrick (the Archbishop of Armagh) and others 
to reconcile him and Cathal Carragh proved 

As for Rory 0' Conor, we find him in 1191 going Death of 
to Tirconnell, then to Tirowen, then to the o'Conor, 
English of Meath, and lastly to Munster, seeking ^^^^' 
in vain for assistance to recover his kingdom. 
Finally the Sil Murray gave him some lands in 
the south of the County Galway, and he died 
in 1198, in the monastery of Cong. Modern 
writers usually characterize him as a weak and 

1 Supra, p. 116. 

2 Ann. Loch Ce, 1189. Conor O'Dermot was killed in the 
same year by Cathal Carrach. 

3 Four Masters, 1190. 


irresolute prince, and regard it as the crowning 
misfortune of his country that he should have 
been ard-ri at the time of the English invasion. 
But the records in the Irish annals show that 
just before the coming of the English Rory 
O' Conor came more nearly to forcing his rule 
over the length and breadth of Ireland than any 
provincial king had succeeded in doing since 
the days of Brian. There is no reason to suppose 
that any one else would have fared better. It 
was the clan-system and the weakness and 
irresolution inherent in it, rather than lack of 
courage and determination in any individual, 
that rendered continuous and united opposition 
to the foreigners impossible. There was no 
national sense of country — only a ' tribal 
patriotism ' and consequent anarchy. 
English From the above summary it appears that 
aries^" ^^ early as 1185 there were some English in 
in Con- Connaught. They were mercenary troops em- 

naugnt. o j ./ x 

ployed by Conor Maenmoy in his struggle against 
his father, and probably consisted of a body of 
deserters in that year from John's army.^ Then 

^ V. supra, p. 101. Conor Maenmoy is described by the 
Four Masters (1189) as ' King of all Connaught both Enghsh 
and Irish ', and after his death when the king of Tirconnell 
entered Connaught ' all the Conacians both English and 
Irish came to oppose him '. In the Gesta Hen. (i. 330) it is 
said of John's army, ' Maxima pars equitum et peditum qui 
cum eo venerant ab eo recesserunt, et ad Hibernenses contra 
eum pugnaturos perrexerunt.' 


in 1193-5, as we have seen,^ Gilbert de Nangle, 
with a band from Meath, took service under 
Cathal Crovderg and joined in Cathal's Munster 
raid of the latter year. For this Gilbert was 
outlawed, but he obtained the cantred of 
Maenmagh, a district about Loughrea, County 
Galway, from Cathal, and remained permanently 
in his service. 

Cathal Crovderg' s position as King of Con- Cathal 
naught was probably recognized by the Peace ^ ^ ^^^' 
of Athlone (1195), whatever the exact conditions 
of that peace may have been ; and for the 
following four years he confined his military 
operations to his own province, where he was 
still opposed by influential chieftains. In 1199, Plunders 
however, he broke out again, burned the bawn 
of Athlone, killed many persons, and carried off 
many cows.^ A mote-fortress appears to have 
been already erected here — perhaps under the 
conditions of the Peace of Athlone — to guard the 
ford (or wooden bridge) across the Shannon at 
this strategic point. The existing castle com- 
mands the gate of Connaught, and has had an 
eventful history, but in all the storm and stress 
through which it has passed it has embraced 
within its strong walls, up to the present battle- 

^ V. supra, p. 154. 

2 Ann. Loch Ce, 1199. The text has simply bodhun Afha, 
'the bawn of the ford,' but as the editor says, Ath-luain 
(Athlone) is probably meant. 


ments on the river-side, a great mass of made 
earth, which, there is Httle doubt, represents 
a mote such as the Normans at this time usually 
raised for their fortresses.^ Next year (1200) 
Cathal Crovderg, with Mc Costello in his com- 
pany, followed up this exploit by a cattle-raid in 
West Meath.^ These were unprovoked attacks. 
Now came the turning-point. He led a hosting 
Attacks against Cathal Carragh, with whom he had made 
Carragh. peacc in the previous year, and to whom he 
had assigned lands in the extreme south of the 
province. This is described by the annalist as 
' a treacherous and malicious hosting, of which 
came the destruction of Connaught and his own 
destruction '.•' It was indeed the occasion of 
renewed civil war in Connaught, with consequent 
ravaging and plundering of the province. The 
assistance of powerful Anglo-Norman lords was 
invoked by one side or the other. There was 
shifting of alliances, and a good deal of (at first 
sight) confused fighting. It resulted in the 
definite dependence of the kings of Connaught 
on the English Crown, and the gradual acquisi- 
tion of lands or of claims to lands here and there 
in the province by William de Burgh and others, 
and ultimately, about a generation later, to 
the effective partition of the province and the 

1 See my paper, ' Athlone Castle : Its Early History,' 
Joum. R. S. A. I. 1907, pp. 257-76. 

2 Ann. Loch Ce, 1200. 3 Ibid. 


virtual domination of William de Burgh's son. 
In order to see how the first stages of these 
important results were brought about it will be 
necessary to recount briefly the main facts of 
the conflict between the two Cathals, and, in 
particular, of the part played by the English 
therein, as they may be gleaned from the annals,^ 
filling up gaps and testing the story, as far as 
may be, from the English records and other 
available sources. 

Cathal Crovderg's attempt to entrap Cathal 
Carragh did not succeed, and a detachment 
sent to capture him was badly beaten. Cathal 
Carragh, however, knew that he could not stand 
up alone against the King of Connaught, so he Who 
invoked the assistance of William de Burgh, at aid from 
this time governor of Limerick, and delivered ^^g^h. 
to him his own son as a pledge for the pay of the 

1 The various annalists do not differ materially as to the 
chief events of these campaigns or as to their sequence, 
but vary as to the dates. The fullest and most coherent 
account, and apparently the true chronology, are given in 
the Annals of Loch Ce. Thus John de Courcy's intervention 
(and the death of Rory MacDunlevy) are fixed to the year 
1201 by Roger de Hoveden. John, cardinal priest and 
papal legate, was in Ireland in August 1202 (Rot. Pat., 
4 John, m. 10, Cal. no. 168). William de Burgh's turning 
against Cathal Crovderg seems to be fixed to the year 1203 
by John's mandate of the 7th July of that year granting 
a safe-conduct to William (Rot. Pat., 5 John, p. 31 b), 
and by the grant of the custody of Limerick to William de 
Braose on the following day. 


foreigners. William de Burgh had a score to 
pay off against Cathal Crovderg for the Munster 
hosting of 1195, and perhaps for the burning of 
' the bawn of Limerick and Castleconnell ' early 
in 1200.^ The King of Connaught had also 
forfeited the favour of the Crown by his attack 
on Athlone and raid into Meath. It is probable 
that William de Burgh thought the moment 
favourable to endeavour to make effective John's 
grant to him of Connaught, to which we have 
alluded. Accordingly he assembled a large force 
from Dublin and Leinster as well as from 
Limerick and Munster, and, accompanied by two 
of the sons of Donnell O'Brien and their Irish 
forces, came to the assistance of Cathal Carragh. 
Some of the Connaught tribes at once gave 
hostages to Cathal Carragh, and Cathal Crovderg, 
unable to face the forces opposed to him, 
retreated to the north of Ireland to seek assis- 
Cathai tance there. Then the rest of Connaught was 
Carragh Carried ruthlessly into submission, and Cathal 

becomes ^ 

king. Carragh assumed the nominal kingship. 

Next year (1201) Cathal Crovderg made two 
attempts to recover his kingship. In the first 
he was accompanied by O'Neill, King of Tiro wen, 
and O'Hegney, King of Fermanagh, but the com- 

1 It is not quite certain that this took place before 
WiUiam's advance into Connaught. It is given as an 
isolated entry near the end of the entries for the year 1200 
in the Annals of Loch Ce. 


bination failed through disunion in the camp. 
The northern chieftains, when they undertook 
the campaign, understood that there were no 
foreigners against them, and they refused to 
face William de Burgh. The consequence was 
they were cut off in detail. O'Hegney was slain, 
and O'Neill had to give hostages. In the second 
attempt Cathal Crovderg was assisted by John de -De 
Courcy and Hugh de Lacy. The latter, as we assists 
have seen, had received a speculative grant Qi.o^(jerg 
from William de Burgh of the northern third of ^^^^• 
Connaught,^ but as he was ostensibly acting on 
behalf of Cathal Crovderg, whom William had 
just expelled from Connaught, he can hardly 
have been relying at this time on William's grant. 
It appears, in fact, that John, when Earl of 
Mortain, had made a similarly speculative grant 
to Hugh de Lacy of six cantreds in the north of 
Connaught,^ and it was probably in the hope of 
taking possession of these that Hugh made this 
second expedition in company with John de 

1 SuprUi p. 156. 

2 See the cancelled charter of King John to Hugh de Lacy 
in 1204, confirming the grant of six cantreds in Connaught 
made by the king when Earl of Mortain : Rot. Chart., 
6 John, p. 139 b. The cantreds were the Three Tuatha, 
Moylurg-Tirerrill,Moy Ai, Corran, Slieve Lugha, andLeyney, 
to be held of the king in fee by the service of twenty knights. 
It was not until about 1229 that Hugh de Lacy obtained 
an effective grant in Connaught, and then the grantor was 
William de Burgo's son Richard : Gormanston Register, 
f. 189. 



ferred to 


Courcy into Connaught. According to the Irish 
annals he marched through three of the cantreds 
granted to him by John, namely Corann, Moylurg, 
and Moy Ai. Then he went further south as far 
as Kilmacduagh in the attempt to recover the 
spoil which Cathal Carragh had driven off. The 
host, however, was caught in a pass through 
the woods, and defeated, and John de Courcy 
with difficulty led his army back by Tuam and 
Roscommon to Rinn-duin, and so by boats across 
Lough Ree.^ 

And now a curious change of alHances took 
place, the cause of which is obscured by what 
seems to be a mutilation in the annals. Up to 
this point William de Burgh, and apparently the 
English government too, favoured Cathal Car^ 
ragh; but now, at the moment when Cathal 
Crovderg had twice failed to recover his kingdom, 
the support of both William and the Crown was 
transferred to him. How is this change of policy 
to be explained ? We are told that ' when the 
foreigners arrived in Meath (i. e. after the retreat 
across Lough Ree) they arrested Cathal Crovderg 
as a pledge for the payment of wages, and that 
he [Cathal] was taken to Dublin until he gave 
pledges for himself that he would obey the King 

1 Ann. Loch Ce, 1201. Rinn-diiin, 'the Point of the 
dun,' is a promontory jutting into Lough Ree. It was 
afterwards the site of an important castle, as to which see 
Journ. R. S. A. I. 1907, p. 274. 


of the Saxons '.^ In all probability Cathal 
Crovderg at this time, in consideration of being 
recognized as King of Connaught by the English 
king, and being assisted to recover his throne, 
agreed to surrender some lands in Connaught to 
the Crown. We can even fix pretty confidently 
what these lands were. In November 1200 
John had granted to Geoffrey de Costentin a 
cantred near Athlone afterwards known as the 
Fews of Athlone, and in April 1201 this grant 
was amplified by the addition of the adjoin- 
ing cantred of Tirmany. Probably Cathal now 
agreed to the surrender of at least these cantreds. 
At any rate, it is certain that from this time 
forward Cathal Crovderg was supported by the 
Crown, even when William de Burgh turned 
against him, and that he soon agreed to give 
even a larger slice of his territory to the Crown. 
As to John de Courcy, we have the indepen- 
dent account of Roger de Hoveden that he was 
treacherously entrapped in this year (1201) by 
Hugh de Lacy, his late companion-in-arms, into 
his castle^ 'for the purpose of delivering him up 

1 This is the translation of the passage as it originally stood 
in the Annals of Loch Ce, but the name Eoain (John) has been 
interlined, so as to make the passage mean that John de 
Courcy was taken to Dublin and gave the pledges. But it is 
probable that the statement as originally written was correct. 

2 This was no doubt the castle of Nobber, to which, as 
stated in the Annals of Clonmacnois, Cathal Carragh {recte 
Cathal Crovderg) was also at first taken. The Annals of 


to the King of England, who had long wished 
to take him ', but that John de Courcy's men 
ravaged the lands of the de Lacys until their lord 
was delivered up to them.^ 
Secret On November 2, 1201, the king gave a secret 

commis- . . -._ ., ^^. ^ ttt-it 

sion. commission to Meiler b itz Henry, \\ lUiam de 
Burgh, and Geoffrey de Costentin, and commanded 
the barons of Meath to have faith in what these 
commissioners should tell them on the king's 
behalf.^ This may have been the way the new 
policy of supporting Cathal Crovderg was com- 
municated. At any rate, Cathal himself, on 

Hosting being released, went to William de Burgh, who, 

by Wil- , . o ' ' 

Ham de in accordance with the new policy, early in 1202, 
1202. ' accompanied by Murtough Finn, Conor Roe, and 
Fineen Mc Carthy, marched with Cathal Crov- 
derg into Connaught and proceeded to fortify 
himself at the monastery of Boyle. While the 
Cathal fortification was going on, Cathal Carragh was 
siain?^ killed in a skirmish in the neighbourhood. Thus 
the war came to an end. The O'Briens and 
Fineen Mc Carthy returned to their homes, 
William de Burgh's troops were billeted through- 
out Connaught, while William himself and Cathal 
Crovderg went in all friendship to spend Easter 
at Cong. 

Inisfallen mention that John de Courey ' was taken prisoner 
by the sons of Hugh de Lacy, by the advice of the King of 

1 Roger de Hoveden, 1201. - Rot. Pat., 3 John, p. 2 b. 


But to secure peace it is not always enough for 
rulers to agree, if their peoples are not friendly 
at heart. Besides, in this case it was Cathal's 
people who had to pay in the coin of cows for 
past services. On a false rumour that William Massacre 

. of Wil- 

was dead the Connaught men acted ' as if they uam's 
had taken counsel together ', and each tribe killed ^^"^^'^P^' 
the foreign soldiers billeted upon them, to the 
number altogether of 900 or more. We may 
acquit Cathal of all treachery in this matter, 
and yet not wonder that this massacre led to a 
rupture between him and William de Burgh. ^ 

So far William de Burgh had clearly acted William 


in accordance with the new arrangement with con- 
Cathal Crovderg, but now, early in 1203, accom- "203/ ' 
panied by the sons of Conor Maenmoy, he entered 
Connaught, probably to take possession, in spite 

^ Ann. Loch Ce, 1202. In describing this massacre as 
the consequence of a plot by de Burgh against Cathal's 
life, Miss Norgate does not display her usual care ; nor in 
calling Wilham a double-dyed traitor does she shoAv her 
usual restraint of language (John Lackland, p. 139). The 
account in the Annals of Loch Ce, 1202, hints indeed at 
an uneffected plot, but as the direct consequence, not the 
cause, of the massacre. Even the entries in the Annals of 
Clonmacnois followed by the Four Masters (a much inferior 
authority, especially for Connaught) do not warrant this 
harsh judgement on William de Burgh. It is true that he 
twice changed his alliances ; once apparently in consequence 
of the changed policy of his lord, and again in consequence 
of the treacherous massacre of his troops. If for such 
changes he deserved to be called " a double-dyed traitor ', 
what words are left for, say, Donnell O'Brien ? 


of Cathal Crovderg, of some lands which he had 
been granted there, perhaps by King John in 1195, 
perhaps by one or other of the Cathals. He 
erected a castle at Meelick, near the Shannon, in 
the County Galway, ' and the spot where the 
castle was erected was round the great church 
of the place, which was filled round about with 
earth and stones up to the gables.' ^ In other 
words, it seems that the church of Meelick was 
used as the core of a mote for the new castle. 
From this castle William de Burgh and his 
Connaught allies devastated the country, going 
as far as Knockmoy, Mayo, and Cong. Cathal 
was unable to resist him, until Meiler Fitz Henry, 
Is sum- the justiciar, and Walter de Lacy summoned 
bSorethe William to Limerick in the name of the king, 
king. Evidently the Crown still held by the arrange- 
ment with Cathal Crovderg. William then sub- 
mitted, recalled the garrison of Meelick, and 
surrendered Limerick and his Munster castles to 
Meiler as the king's representative.^ In the 
July of this year the king gave William a safe- 
conduct to and from the king's court, provided 
he answered the complaints made against him 

1 Ann. Loch Ce, 1203. I have given the words their 
Hteral meaning, and this rendering brings out the nature 
of the work more clearly than the editor's rendering. 

2 This is evident from the statement in the Annals of 
Loch Ce (1203) of what occurred, when read in connexion 
with the records. Up to this period William de Burgh had 
the confidence of the king. 


by Meiler/ At the same time the custody of 
Limerick was given to William de Braose.^ By 
October William de Burgh had been to the king 
and was so far restored to favour that the lands 
he had pledged and the castles of Kilfeakle and 
Askeaton were to be restored to him, but the 
justiciar was to keep in safe custody William's 
sons and other hostages.^ 

Evidently John was not very angry with 
William de Burgh. Meiler, however, formulated 
complaints against him, and he against Meiler. 
In March 1204 the king took the unusual course 
of appointing a special commission to try and 
determine the cross plaints between Meiler and 
William.* A month later John virtually over- 
rode the jurisdiction of this commission by 
respiting all plaints against William de Burgh 
(whom he intended at the time to take to Nor- 
mandy with him) and commanding the justiciar 
to give full seisin to William or his agents of all ^gj^J^'^' 
his lands except the land of Connaught, which ^on- 

. ^ ' naught, 

was to remam m the king's hand.® It would restored. 

1 Rot. Pat., 5 John, p. 31 b. 

2 Rot. Chart., 5 John, p. 107. 

3 Liberate, 5 John, p. 67. Askeaton, as we have seen, 
must have been granted to WiUiam de Burgh after Hamo 
de Valognes' death or forfeiture. 

* Rot. Pat., 5 John, p. 39 b. The commissioners were 
Walter de Lacy, Henri de Londres, then archdeacon of 
Stafford, Godfrey Lutterel, one of the king's trusted officers, 
and WiUiam Petit. 5 Rot. Pat., 5 John, p. 41 b. 

1226 n If 


appear, however, that this mandate was not 
immediately carried out, as it was virtually 
repeated in the September following. William 
had undertaken to stand his trial in the king's 
court in Ireland to answer all appeals, and 
Connaught was to be retained in the king's hand 
(theoretically, we must suppose) pending the 
result of the trial.^ How the trial ended, or 
whether it ever took place, does not appear. 
Death of William returned to Ireland, but only to die 
de^Bur^h. i^ ^hc winter of 1205-6.^ In April 1206 Meiler 
Fitz Henry was ordered to take into the king's 
hand all William's lands.^ His son Richard was 
a minor, and did not get seisin until 1214.* 
His The annalist of Clonmacnois, a place which 

William de Burgh had plundered from his castle 
of Meelick, shows his animus against him and 
exhibits the prevailing superstition of the time 
by ascribing his death to a loathsome disease 
inflicted on him by God and the patrons of the 
churches he had plundered. But the translator 
adds : ' These and many other reproachful words 
my author layeth down in the old book, which 
I was loath to translate because they were uttered 
by him for the disgrace of so worthy and noble 

1 Rot. Pat., 6 John, p. 46. ~ Ann. Loch Ce, 1205. 

3 Rot. Pat., 7 John, p. GO b. 

* Ibid., 16 John, p. 118 b. Another son, Hubert, be- 
came Prior of Athassel and afterwards (1223) Bishop of 


a man as William Burke was, and left out other 
his reproachful words which he (as I conceive) 
rather declared of an evil will he did bear towards 
the said William than any other just cause.' 
0' Donovan, assuming, as has been usually done, 
that William de Burgh was the same person 
as William Fitz Audelin, endeavours to defend 
the annalist as against the translator by addu- 
cing the unfavourable description of Fitz Audelin 
given by Giraldus.^ It is strange that O'Donovan 
did not perceive that this description could not 
possibly apply in its entirety to William de 
Burgh. Giraldus again and again sneers at the 
slothfulness and cowardice of William Fitz 
Audelin,^ but these qualities were surely alien 
to the ' William Burke ' of the annalists. Wil- 
liam de Burgh was probably neither better nor 
worse than other vigorous spirits of the age, but 
no man could master two provinces of Ireland in 
the course of a decade, as he did, without being 
both energetic and brave. 

As to the plundering of churches and monas- why the 
teries so often laid to the charge of eminent plundered 
Anglo-Norman leaders — and indeed to Irish churches. 

1 Four Masters, 1204, note o. 

2 Giraldus speaks of Fitz Audelin as ' Imbellium debella- 
tor, rebelUum blanditor ; hosti suavissimus, subdito gravis- 
simus ' (v. 338) ; he also exclaims at his unfitness for a 
lord-marcher, * strenuitate carens ' (p. 352), one whose 
maxim was ' Hostibus illaesis semper spoliare subactos ' 
(p. 391), and much more to the same effect. 



chieftains too — by the monkish annaUsts, a fur- 
ther word of explanation may be advisable. If 
we may judge from the number and magnificence 
of their religious foundations in Ireland, these 
leaders were certainly not wanting in piety as 
understood at the time, while the plunder and 
destruction of churches, as such, was obviousl}* 
not a military measure. But it was the custom 
of the Irish to store their corn and other property 
within the sanctuary of a church, presumably as 
being safer there than elsewhere. In proof of 
this we have not only the direct statement of 
Giraldus that this was the custom, and that in 
view of it Cardinal Vivian, the papal legate, in 
1177 gave permission to the English, on any 
expedition when they could not get supplies else- 
where, to take what they found in the churches 
on payment of a just price. ^ At this particular 
time, however, the men of Connaught, by way 
of creating desolation before the advance of 
Miles de Cogan, with their own hands burned 
what provisions they could not conceal, together 
with the churches in which they were stored.^ 
But the Irish annals themselves afford other 
instances. Thus in the very passage describing 

^ Gir. Camb. v. 346 ; cf. the statement on p. 137 that 
the Irish, not having any castles, used to seek protection 
for themselves and for their goods in churches. 

2 The Annals of Loch Ce, 1177, here virtually corroborates 
Giraldus ; see above, p. 27. 


the harrying of Connaught by Cathal Carragh 
and WiUiam Burke and the two O'Briens, it is 
said that they carried off ' all the property, stock, 
or food that was in the churches, without regard 
to saint or sanctuary or any earthly terror.' ^ 
In 1214 Thomas Mac Uchtry and Rory Mac 
Rannall ' carried off the precious things (goods) 
of the community of Derry, and of the north of 
Ireland besides, from the middle of the great 
church of the monastery.' ^ In 1236 Richard de 
Burgh, endeavouring to quell disturbances in 
Connaught, went to Tuam and Mayo and other 
ecclesiastical centres, ' and not a stack of seed or 
corn of all that was in the great relig (church- 
yard) of Mayo, or in the relig of the church of 
Michael the Archangel, was left without being 
taken away ; and threescore or fourscore baskets 
were brought out of these churches.' ^ Now to 
reduce to submission an enemy that will not 
meet you in the field, and that possesses no 
castles or fortified towns which might be taken 
and held against him, almost the sole, and cer- 
tainly the most merciful, military measure is to 

^ Ann. Loch Ce, 1200, p. 212, where the words of the text 
for what was carried off are each crodh ocus each eallach no 
bhidh is na templuib. 

2 Ann. Loch Ce, 1213 ; Ann. Ulster, 1214. The word 
here, set, translated ' precious things ', was used to designate 
goods and chattels of any kind : O'Donovan's supplement 
to O'Reilly's Dictionary. 

3 Ann. Loch Ce, 1236, p. 339. 


cut off his provisions and destroy his property. 
At the present day we are perhaps more soft- 
hearted, but certainly not more pious than the 
Normans, and if circumstances should render 
the taking of a church a measure of prime mili- 
tary importance there is no general who would 
hesitate to sound the assault. 

It was not the methods of William de Burgh, 
but his policy, that the Irish annalists viewed 
with disfavour. Had he been an Irishman with 
the same record he would have been described 
as ' Flood of the glory and prowess of the 
Western World.' By some Irish writers he is 
called ' William the Conqueror ', and though he 
did not fully earn that title he was at least 
the ' King-maker ' of Connaught. No one there 
could stand against him, and the subsequent 
kings of Connaught remained subject, and in 
general obedient, to the English Crown. 




At the commencement of the year 1206 
WiUiam de Burgh and Theobald Walter were 
both dead. They were succeeded by minors, 
and their lands were taken into the king's hand. 
John de Courcy, too, had been banished from 
Ulster. The leading figures among the Anglo- 
Normans were Hugh de Lacy, now Earl of Ulster ; 
his brother Walter, Lord of Meath ; Meiler Fitz 
Henry, the justiciar in Dublin; and in Munster, 
Walter de Lacy as seneschal for William de 
Braose, and Geoffrey de Marisco, Thomas Fitz 
Maurice, and other large landholders there. 
But early in 1207 there appeared in Leinster a William 
greater than any of these in the person of William comes to 
Marshal, as he is usually called, Earl of Pembroke {207°^' 
and Striguil and Lord of Leinster. Writers of 
Irish history have said little about this great 
man, and that little in important points wrong, 
partly because until recently not much was 
known of his doings in Ireland. Now, however, 
we have a most valuable biography of William His bio- 
Marshal in the form of an Old French poem or ^^^ ^' 


rhymed chronicle.^ From its concluding verses 
the editor infers that it was composed by a pro- 
fessional trouvere at the request of William 
Marshal the younger, from materials, which 
probably took the form of written memoirs, 
supplied by John d'Erlee, one of the Marshal's 
most faithful followers.^ The work appears to 
have been completed about the year 1226. For 
us it supplies several new facts concerning 
William Marshal in Ireland, throws fresh light 
on an obscure page of the history of the country, 
and helps us to form a true estimate of King 
John's character as displayed in his dealings 
with his Irish barons. 

His ecarly William Marshal was born about the year 1 144. 

years. jj.^ father, John, son of Gilbert, succeeded to the 
office of Marshal of England granted to Gilbert 
by Henry I. The office was hereditary, and 

1 L'Histoire de Guillaume le Marechal, Comte de Striguil 
et de Pembroke, ed. Paul Meyer, 1891-1901. 

2 John d'Erlee received his name from a village now 
called Early in Berkshire, not far from Reading. In Latin 
documents it appears as Erleia, Erleya, Erleg', Erlegh'. 
He is first mentioned in the Histoire in 1188, when he was 
William's esquire, and he appears frequently afterwards. 
He accompanied his lord to Ireland in 1207 (Rot. Pat., 
8 John, p. 69), and was given the custody of Southern 
Leinster when WiUiam was summoned back by John. He 
witnessed the Marshal's charters to Tintern, Dunbrody, 
Duiske, and Kilkenny, and was granted lands in the County 
Kilkenny, where the parish name Erleystown (now corruptly 
Earlstown) long preserved his name. 


supplied a surname for the family. In 1152, 
when about eight years old, William was given 
as a hostage to King Stephen, then besieging 
Newbury. His life, according to the rules of war, 
became forfeit, and it was proposed to place him 
in the sling of a pierriere and hurl him into the 
castle. But Stephen, won over by the trustful 
ways of the child, who asked to be given a swing 
in the machine, would not allow him to be in- 
jured, and then we have the pretty picture of 
the king in his tent playing at jack-straws with 
the little boy.^ William is said to have grown to 
be a well-formed man, perfect in limb as a beau- 
tiful statue, with brown locks and a presence 
that would grace a Roman emperor. ' He who 
made him,' says the poet, ' was a great Master.' ^ 
During the years 1170-83 he was a member of the 
household of Henry ' the young king ', a victor 
in many a tournament, and ever faithful to his 
lord — even in his revolt against his father — up 
to the day of his death. He then went to the 
Holy Land in vicarious fulfilment of the young 
king's vow, and after his return was one of King 
Henry's most faithful followers to the last. 

It was about May 1189 that Henry, lying ill is pro- 
at Le Mans, promised William the hand of Isabel Isabel 
de Clare, the heiress of Leinster, in recompense f^^^^l^ 
for his good service,^ and ordered Hubert Walter, "age. 

1 Histoire G. le Mar., 11. 467-650. 

2 Ibid., 11. 715-36. 3 Ibid., 11. 8303, &c. 


then Ranulf de Glanville's clerk, to give him 
possession of the lady and her land on his re- 
turn to England. When in the following month 
Henry was flying from Le Mans with the Marshal 
guarding the rear, Richard of Poitou overtook 
them. The Marshal turned and spurred towards 
Richard. ' God's limbs ! Marshal,' cried Richard, 
' slay me not. That would be foul. I have no 
hauberk.' ' Nay,' replied the Marshal, ' may 
the Devil slay thee, for I will not ' ; and with 
that he plunged his lance into the horse, threw 
the rider, and stopped the pursuit.^ When less 
than a month later Richard met William beside 
Henry's bier at Fontevrault, he not only bore 
him no ill will, but confirmed his father's gift 
to him of the damisele cU Estregoil, and sent 
him on an important mission to London.^ 
On the way he visited the Pays de Caux to 
take possession of his bride and of some lands 
there to which she was entitled by inheritance.^ 
Then, after accomplishing his mission in England, 
he married Isabel in London, at the house of 
the sheriff. 

Soon afterAvards we have an instructive scene. 
John refused to give the Marshal seisin of his 

1 Histoire G. le Mar., 11. 8837-49. Gerald de Barry (viii. 
236) alludes to this incident, though without mentioning 
the Marshal's name. 

2 Ibid., 11. 9321-71. 

* Ibid., 11. 9455-62. Longue villa was the caput of the 
fief, which came to Isabel through her father. 


Irish lands, and the latter had to seek the king's John 
intervention. Richard insisted, and John re- give him 
luctantly consented, ' provided,' he said, ' the Leister, 
grants of lands I have made to my men hold 
good and be confirmed.' ' That cannot be,' said 
the king. ' For what would then remain to him, 
seeing that you have given all to your people ? ' 
Finally, John asked that the land he had given 
to Theobald Butler {au boteillier Tiebaut) should 
be left to him. To this the king consented, 
provided Theobald held of the Marshal in chief. ^ 
This was not the only case in which John 
endeavoured to create tenancies to be held 
of himself in chief in lands which he only 
possessed in wardship. As we have seen,^ 
he seems to have done the same thing in Cork 
with the lands of Miles de Cogan, and there 
were probably other cases both in Meath and in 

William Marshal did not go to Ireland to take 
possession of his fief, but sent Reinalt de Kedeville 
as his bailiff or seneschal for that purpose. The 
writer of the Histoire calls Reinalt a rogue, and 

1 Ibid., 11. 9581-618. John in Henry's reign had granted 
Arklow to Theobald Walter, and WiUiam Marshal, probably 
in pursuance of the above arrangement, made a similar 
grant with additions including Tullow. See Carte's 
Ormond, Introd., p. xlvi, where Carte was puzzled by the 
two grants of the same place by different persons. The 
above scene explains the difficulty. 

2 Supra, pp. 45-6. 


intimates that he played false to his lord.^ 
William himself was now appointed by Richard 
one of the subordinate justiciars of England, 
first under Hugh, Bishop of Durham, and then 
under William de Longchamp, and he held some 
office of this kind during the whole time Richard 
was absent from England.^ Modern writers, 
following Walter Harris's Table of Chief Gover- 
nors of Ireland, place William Marshal in that 
capacity from 1191 to 1194.^ But, as we have 
seen, Harris's list, in the early portion at any 
justiciar rate, is full of errors. As for William Marshal, 

of Ir6~ 

land. no authority has been produced for inserting 

1 Hist. G. le Mar., 11. 9619-30. In the lines 

Reinalt de Kedevile, un fals 
Veirement fu de Kedevile 
Quer toz diz le servi de gile 

there is an evident play on the name, which puzzled the 
editor. Might not the place-name have suggested the word 
chetif to the trouvere ? The place intended may have been, 
as M. Meyer suggests, Quetieville (formerly Chetivilla, 
Ketelvilla, Keteuvilla) or Quetteville, both in Calvadoz. 
Probably the ' caitiff ' played into the hands of John in his 
intrigue with Meiler against the Marshal's lands. 

2 Walter of Coventry, vol. i, pp. 378, 388, 432. William 
was given the custody of Nottingham Castle on July 28, 
1191 (ibid., p. 462), and was acting against William Long- 
champ in the following October (ibid., vol. ii, p. 5). In 
March 1193 he was besieging Windsor with liis Welsh fol- 
lowers : Roger de Hoveden, iii. 206 ; Gerv, Cant., vol. i, 
p. 515 ; Hist. G. le Mar., 1. 9898, &c. 

^ Harris did not invent the statement ; for though Ware 
and Hanmer are silent. Cox makes William Marshal governor 
from 1191 to 1197. 


him in the list, no charters executed by him as 
governor are forthcoming, not a single act is 
anywhere ascribed to him in Ireland at this time, 
and his position and doings in England during 
these years seem to negative the possibility of 
his holding office in Ireland. Moreover, it was 
very much against his will, and only at the king's 
command, that John put William Marshal in 
possession of his lands ; and we shall find John, 
when king, refusing William permission to go to 
Ireland to visit his fief, intriguing against his 
interests there, and endeavouring to thwart him 
in every way. The appointment, if made, must 
have come from John, and John is unlikely to 
have made it. 

After Nottingham was surrendered to Richard 
in person in 1194, the chancellor (meaning, ap- 
parently, William de Longchamp) called upon 
Walter de Lacy to do homage to the king for 
his land in Ireland. This Walter did. Then 
the chancellor called upon William Marshal to 
do the same. But William refused, saying that Refuses 
it would be felony to John, to whom he had done homage 
homage for all that he held of him, and that he ^i^hard i 
would deceive nobody by flattery. The kinej i^^. 

'^ •; -^ ^ Leinster. 

thereupon said he was right, and the barons 
approved. William added : ' If any man in the 
world seeks to obtain Ireland, I shall range 
myself with all my force on the side of him whose 
man I am. I have faithfully served our lord the 


king here for the land I hold of him, so that 
I have nothing to fear.' ^ One does not know 
which to admire most, the fearlessness of the 
Marshal or the good-humoured toleration of the 

William appears to have been almost con- 
tinually in Normandy with Richard up to the 
time of the king's death. He was one of the prin- 
cipal supporters of John's succession, and received 
from John the formal investiture of the earldom 
of Pembroke and a confirmation of the office of 
marshal of the household.^ He may have paid 
a brief visit to Ireland in the winter of 1200-1.^ 
Certain Latin annals place the founding of the 
Monas- monastery de Voto or Tintern (County Wexford) 
de Voto. in this year, stating that William, when in peril 
by sea, vowed that if he reached land in safety 
he would erect a monastery to Christ and His 
mother Mary.* This he did at the head of 
Bannow Bay, and we may conjecture that the 
Marshal's ship found refuge in the bay not far 

1 Hist. G. le Mar., 11. 10289-340. 

2 Roger de Hoveden, iv, 90 ; Rot. Chart, 1 John, p. 46. 
On November 12, 1207, John granted to William Marshal's 
nephew, John Marshal, the marshalcy of Ireland and the 
cantred of Kilmeane near Roscommon : ibid., 9 John, 173 b. 

^ He can be traced with John's court every month up 
to the 3rd September 1200, but from this date to March 
1201 we seem to lose sight of him in the records. 

4 Annals, Laud MS., Chart. St. Mary's, Dublin, ii. 307, 
and cf. ibid., p. 278. 


from where Robert Fitz Stephen first landed 
in Ireland. William brought monks from the 
Cistercian house of Tintern in Monmouthshire 
to supply the Monasterium de Voto, and hence 
the latter came to be known as ' Tinterna Minor '. 
As to the date, however, the charter by which 
William endowed his new foundation has been 
preserved to us in an inspeximus and confirma- 
tion of the time of Richard 11,^ and from the 
names of the witnesses it would seem to belong 
to the period 1207-13, during which William was 
almost continuously in Ireland. The vow, of 
course, may have been made some years earlier. 

We need not here follow William Marshal's Becomes 
career in Normandy and England during the from 
early years of John's reign. Suffice it to say that ° "' 
he became more and more estranged from the 
king. When through John's supineness Richard's 

1 Chartae Priv. et Immun., p. 80, The names of the 
witnesses mentioned are those of WiUiam's feudatories : 
Jordan de Saukvill, John d'Erlee, John Marshal, William 
and Maurice de Londres, Walter Purcell, Baldmn and 
Robert Keting, WiUiam Chevre, Nicholas Brun, and Philip 
the Cleric. Of these John Marshal was sent by his uncle 
to Ireland in 1204 to take over the seneschalship of his lands 
and castles : Rot. Pat., 5 John, p. 42. John d'Erlee came 
to Ireland with his lord in 1207 ; Rot. Pat., 8 John, p. 69. 
Jordan de Sauqueville and Walter Purcell were in Ireland 
with the earl in 1207-8 ; Hist. G. le Mar. {infra, p. 211). 
Compare, too, the witnesses to the earl's charters to Kil- 
kenny, Dunbrody, and Duiske, all of which seem to date 
from about the same time. 


' Saucy Castle ' had fallen and Normandy was 
hopelessly lost, William was one of those who 
thwarted John's belated efforts to lead an 
expedition against Philip, and this no doubt 
contributed to John's ill will. But John was 
jealous of William's reputation, power, and 
independence, and would have humbled him if 
he could. William's unswerving loyalty and 
tact, however, gave him no opportunity. 

About the close of the year 1206 the Marshal 
Obtains sought John's Icavc to go to Ireland to visit his 
go to lands there. The king gave an unwilling consent. 
re an . jj^ j^^^ been often asked to grant this leave, but 
hitherto had always refused.^ William had not 
got beyond his castle of Striguil, however, when 
he was overtaken by a messenger from the king 
demanding his second son as a hostage. Wil- 
liam's eldest son was already a hostage in the 
king's hands, and a less prudent man than 
William would have refused this new demand. 
Disregarding the advice of his countess and his 
barons, he told the messenger that he would 
gladly send all his sons to the king if he desired 
it ; ' but,' he added, ' tell me, for the love of God, 
why he acts thus towards me ? ' The messenger 

1 Hist. G. le Mar. U. 13311-20. The writer says that 
WiUiam had never seen his lands ; but if the date (1200) 
assigned for the founding of the Monasterium de Voto (or 
even for the vow) be correct, this statement cannot be 


replied that the king desired above all to prevent 
the Marshal going to Ireland. ' By God,' said 
the Marshal, ' for good or for ill I shall go, since 
he has given me permission.' On the morrow he 
sent his son Richard to the king and set sail for 

And now opens a story of intrigue against intrigue 
the Earl Marshal which we should never be and 
able to piece together without the Histoire, but ^03^ 
which, confirmed as it is on many points by the ^T^^^^k^J 
records (which it explains), we may confidently 
accept as in all essentials true. 

When the Earl Marshal landed in Ireland, 
most of his men, we are told, welcomed him with 
honour, but some there were who in their hearts 
were much chagrined at his coming. Foremost 
among these was Meiler Fitz Henry, the justiciar. 
It appears indeed from the records that Meiler, 
while in general only carrying out John's orders, 
had by his high-handed action in one way or 
another aggrieved many of the magnates of 
Ireland and despoiled them of their rights. His 
action towards William de Burgh was hardly 
justified by the king. He had, as we have seen, 
taken Limerick by force from Walter de Lacy, 
who held it for William de Braose, and the king 

1 Hist. G. le Mar., 11. 13335-422. The king's protection 
for the lands of William Earl Marshal while in Ireland is 
dated Feb. 19, 1207 : Rot. Pat., 7 John, p. 69. He was 
accompanied by Henry Hose and John d'Erlee. 

1226 H O 


had not scrupled to profit by the violence.^ He 
had also by John's orders taken into the king's 
hand the whole of the kingdom of Cork and 
made a number of new grants there, which were 
subsequently confirmed by the king, and which 
apparently ignored the seignory of the heirs of 
the original grantees, and perhaps disallowed 
the rights of some of the former tenants.^ In 
Leinster, on no apparent legal grounds, he had 
taken OfPaly into the king's hand, and, as we 
shall see, he seems also to have taken possession 
of Fircal in Meath ; and when the barons of Meath 
and Leinster attempted to get redress they were 
indignantly reprimanded by the king.^ William 
Marshal's name is not mentioned, but he was 
aggrieved by the seizure of Offaly, and presum- 
ably supported his barons. At any rate, Meiler 
is said to have told the king that if he permitted 
the Marshal to remain long in Ireland it would 
be to his detriment. John summoned both the 
Marshal and Meiler to his presence. This was pro- 
bably in October 1207. Meiler reached the king 
early in November, apparently before the earl. 

1 V. supra, p, 177. 

2 V. supra, p. 45, and see Meiler' s grants in Desmond 
referred to in Rot. Pat., 8 John, p. 71 b. 

3 This was on May 23, 1207 : Rot. Pat., 8 John, p. 72. 
The barons were charged with estabhshing a ' new assize '. 
Perhaps Meiler had been summoned to answer for his con- 
duct before the chief courts of the Liberties ; cf . Rot. Pat., 
9 John, p. 76 b, translated. Early Statutes (Berry), p. 3. 



Anticipating disturbance, the earl made his The Mar - 
arrangements. He gave the custody of his lands ticipates 
to Jordan de Sauqueville and John d'Erlee, and "^^"^ " 
left with them his cousin, Stephen d'Evreux, and 
some of the knights he had brought with him, 
and bade them act by the advice of Geoffrey 
Fitz Robert, Walter Purcell, Thomas Fitz An- 
thony, and Maillard, his standard-bearer.^ Then 
the earl summoned his barons to Kilkenny. 
Leading his countess by the hand before them, 
he said : ' My lords, you see here your rightful 
lady, daughter of the earl who liberally granted 
you your fiefs when he had conquered the land. 
She abides here in your midst enceinte. Until 
God brings me back again I pray you all to 
guard her well and loyally, for she is your lady. 
I have naught here except through her.' They 
all promised to do right, but some of them failed 
to keep their words.^ 

1 Hist. G. le Mar., 13424-512. Stephen d'Evreux (or 
de Ebroica, Chart. St. Mary's, Dublin, ii. 183) was perhaps 
founder of the family of Devereux in co. Wexford. Geoffrey 
Fitz Robert had been, and perhaps still was, the earl's 
seneschal : Reg. St. Thomas's, p. 125. He has been con- 
founded Avith, but must be distinguished from, his name- 
sake, the second husband of Basilia de Clare. He speaks 
of his wife, Eva de Bermingham, as living, in a charter 
witnessed by Hugh le Rous, Bishop of Ossory, i.e. after 
1202. BasiUa's husband was hving 1199-1201 : Reg. St. 
Thomas's, no. cxxix ; and she seems to have survived 
him : ibid., cxxvii, cxxxvi. 

2 Hist. G. le Mar., 11. 13527-50. 



Meiler's No sooner had the earl landed in Wales on his 

raid New way to the king than Meiler's men and kinsfolk 
^°^^' raided his territory. They burned his granges 
at his newly formed port, now known as New 
Ross, slew twenty of his men, and carried off a 
prey from the town. And thus the disturbances 

Meanwhile Meiler was with the king at Wood- 
stock on the 8th of November, when the new 
grants in Cork were confirmed. According to 
the biographer of the Earl Marshal, Meiler offered 
to raise a host at his own cost and take both 
William de Braose and William Marshal prisoners 
The Mar- and bring them to the king. As a preliminary 
chie/men ^6 got the king to send letters summoning to 
sum- England John d'Erlee, Stephen d'Evreux, Jordan 

moned to => ' jr ' 

England. (Je Saukeville, and other leading followers of the 
Marshal,^ under penalty of losing the lands which 

1 Hist. G. le Mar., 11. 13551-74. M. Meyer is unfortunate 
in his suggestion that the novele vile of 1. 13569 is Newtown- 
barry, a town which only got its name from an ancestor 
of Lord Farnham in the latter part of the sixteenth century. 
It is undoubtedly the villa novi pontis, or New Ross, where 
John stopped on June 21, 1210 — a town which clearly owed 
all its early importance to William Marshal. 

2 Ibid., 11. 13575-670. The editor could find no trace 
of these letters, but that they were actually sent appears 
from the Close Rolls. On Februar}^ 20, 1208, John wrote 
to the Earl Marshal as follows : ' We have ordered that 
the land which John de Erleg' held of j^our fee and which 
was taken into our hand be restored to you. We caused 
him to be disseised because for more than two months 


they held of the king in England. The king, 
too, gave permission to Meiler to return to 
Ireland,^ but when the Earl Marshal afterwards 
asked for leave to return it was refused. 

Meiler, on arriving in Ireland, found that 
matters had not gone well with his friends, 
several of whom were in prison for their mis- 
deeds. He summoned the earl's men to a parley 
at Castledermot,^ and there the king's messenger 
gave them the royal letters recalling them to 
England. They took counsel together and were 
convinced that the king meant to disseise their 
lord. Accordingly they decided to remain in They 

^ '^ -^ decide to 

Ireland and defend the land which the earl had stay. 

he failed to come to us after being ordered to do so We 
desire you to send back him and the others whom \\e 
lent you, and that they come to us since we have need of 
their service, and until they return we shall hold their 
lands in our hand ' : Rot. Claus., 9 John, m. 8, p. 103. On 
March 19, 1208, John ordered the sheriff of Buckingham- 
shire to dehver Jordan de Saukeville's land to William 
Marshal (ibid., p. 106 b) ; and on the 20th there is a similar 
order as to John d'Erlee's Enghsh lands (ibid.). 

1 Meiler probably returned to Ireland soon after Nov. 
14, 1207, when he was with the king at Gloucester. The 
events next related must have taken place before the 
end of March 1208, when the king became reconciled Avith 
the Earl Marshal. 

2 The text of the Histoire is here corrupt, and the place- 
name disguised. Meiler held his parlement Jiors ceiste [or 
teiste] de mot (1. 13697) ; but we can confidently restore 
tristerdermot, the usual Anglo-Norman form of the Irish 
' Disert Diarmada ', now Castledermot. 


entrusted to them. They then sought aid from 
Hugh de Lacy, Earl of Ulster, who speedily 
came with 65 knights and 1,200 men, and they 
devastated Meiler's lands.^ Here we have a con- 
firmation with fresh details in the Irish annals. 
The de ' The SOUS of Hugo de Lacy,' we are told, ' and 
JlkT"* the English of Meath marched to the castle of 
^g^""^" Ardnurcher, and continued to besiege it for 
five weeks, when it was surrendered to them, 
as was also the territory of Fircal, and Meiler was 
banished from the country.' ^ Ardnurcher had 
been granted to Meiler by the elder Hugh de Lacy, 
but from this entry it would seem that Meiler 
claimed Fircal (an adjoining district in King's 
County, but belonging to Meath), adversely 
to Walter de Lacy — just as he claimed Offaly 
adversely to William Marshal, and Limerick 
adversely to William de Braose. Probably 
Meiler had acted according to John's directions 
throughout. If so, we must regard this wide- 
spread disaffection among the Irish barons at 
this time as the Irish counterpart of the disaffec- 
tion which grew to a head among the barons of 
England a little later, and as due to the same 
cause: the capricious, oppressive, and, as we 

1 Hist. G. le Mar., 11. 13680-786. 

2 j^our Masters, 1207 ; cf. Ann. Loch Ce, 1207. Perhaps 
the beginning of 1208 was the true date. In this latter 
year the annals also mention Geoffrey Mareis or de Marisco 
as defeating some of Meiler's men at Thurles : Ann. Laud 
MS., Chart. St. Mary's, Dubhn, ii, p. 311. 


would now say, unconstitutional action of the 

Meanwhile, Earl William, who was following 
John in his movements in England, knew 
nothing of what was going on in Ireland. Indeed, 
as seems to have often happened, all communica- 
tion with Ireland was cut off during the winter.^ 
One day at Guilford ^ the king asked the earl 
if he had heard any good news from Ireland. 
On the earl replying in the negative, John told 
an imaginary tale of how the countess had been 
besieged at Kilkenny by Meiler, how Meiler had 
at last been beaten, but John d'Erlee, Stephen 
d'Evreux, and Ralph Fitz Pain had been killed. 
The earl was much grieved at this, but wondered 
to himself how the king could have got the news. 
When Lent came both king and earl learnt the 
facts : that Meiler had been beaten and taken Meiler 
prisoner, and had been obliged to make peace ^**^"* 
with the countess and give his son Henry as 
a hostage, and that Philip de Prendergast and 
the rest who had taken Meiler' s part had also 
given hostages.^ 

Having failed to humble the Earl Marshal by 
means of Meiler, John executed one of his rapid 

1 It is said in the Histoire, 11. 13672-5, that Meiler's was 
the only ship that crossed over from Michaelmas (1207) to 
la Chandelor (February 2, 1208). 

2 John was at Guilford, January 25-7, 1208. 

3 Hist. G. le Mar., 11. 13787-888. 


John changes of front. He took both WiUiam Marshal 

pL o ■pf/pg 

front? ai^d Walter de Lacy into favour, restored to them 
their lands, discredited Meiler, and before long 
superseded him in the office of justiciar. The 
steps by which this change was effected are all 
attested by the records. On the 7th of March, 
1208, probably soon after the authentic news 
came from Ireland, John informed Meiler that 
William Earl Marshal had shown himself suffi- 
ciently submissive to the king's will, and ordered 
the justiciar to observe the existing peace in 
Ireland, adding that if any raids had been made 
by the justiciar's people on the earl's land the 
justiciar should make the best amends he could, 
the earl having given a reciprocal undertaking.'^ 
This mandate and the authenticity of the letters 
recalling the marshal's chief men go far to con- 
firm the story told in the marshal's biography. 
On the 19th John gave a similar order with 
regard to Walter de Lacy.^ On the 20th he 
sent Philip of Worcester and others to see 
that his orders were carried out.^ On the 
21st he ordered Meiler to give seisin to the 
earl of the land of Offaly with its castles, for 
which, however, the earl was to give .300 

1 Rot. Claus., 9 John, p. 105. Probably the earl at this 
time assented to the restrictions on behalf of the Cro'wii 
afterwards inserted in the new charter of Leinster. 

2 Ibid., p. 106 b. 

3 Ibid, They were to be summoned to the councils of 
the justiciar : ibid., p. 107. 


marks ; ^ and on the 28th he gave to the earl 
a new charter of his land of Leinster.^ This 
was followed a few weeks later by a similar 
charter to Walter de Lacy of his land of 
Meath.^ The exact date of Meiler's supersession 
is unknown, but according to the Annals of 
Inisf alien Hugh de Lacy was appointed justiciar 
in this year.* 

The earl returned to Ireland, landing at The Mar- 
Glascarrig probably in April. He dealt gener- turns to 
ously with those of his men who had acted J^Jj"*^' 
against him,^ and restored to them their hostages. 
Afterwards Meiler, no longer justiciar, came to 
terms with him. He agreed to give up to him 
at once his castle of Dunamase, the remains of 
which (or rather of some later reconstruction) 
may still be seen crowning a rock in Queen's 
County, and after his death all the rest of his 

1 Rot. Pat., 9 John, p. 80 b. 

2 Rot. Chart., 9 John, p. 176. For the restrictions in- 
serted in this charter see Appendix to this chapter. 

3 Ibid., p. 178. 

* There seems to be no reason to doubt this apx^oint- 
ment. Harris places it in October 1208, which may 
be right. Hugh de Lacy can only have held the appoint- 
ment for a few months, as by favouring WiUiam de 
Braose he soon fell from the king's good graces. John 
de Gray appears to have been justiciar from about the close 
of 1208. 

5 Philip de Prendergast and David de la Roche, both of 
Flemish descent from South Wales, were the principal of 
these. They had just received large grants in Desmond, 


land ^ — a pretty clear admission that it had been 
wrongfully taken. 

In the next chapter we shall see that Earl 

William, through his sheltering WilUam de 

Braose from John's wTath, once more fell under 

that capricious king's ill will, but with the 

exception of a campaign in Wales in 1211, when 

William fought for his unworthy master, he 

And re- seems to have remained in Ireland until early in 

most con- 1213. He was then once more summoned to 

t!ri2i3''^ England by John, who, when in difficulty, knew 

his real worth and (almost excessive) loyalty to 

the throne. After this it is doubtful if he 

ever resided in Ireland again. At most he can 

only have visited his lands for brief periods. 

From this time up to the death of the king the 

earl appears to have been one of John's prin- 

probably through Meiler's influence : Rot. Chart., 9 John, 
pp. 171 b, 172 b. 
1 A lui en tel guise fina 

Que son boen chastel otreia, 
Donmas al conte en heritage. 
Apres le jor de son aage 
Li otreia tote sa terre. 

Hist. G. le Mar., 11. 14127-31. 

The editor, ignorant of Irish topography, supposes Donmas 
to be the caislen na Dumach (recte Dumhcha), or Dough 
Castle, in the Co. Clare, referring toO'Donovan's note to Four 
Masters, 1422. It is undoubtedly the castle of Dunamase 
(Irish, Dun Masc), as to which see vol. i, p. 375. John took 
the castle into his own hand in 1210 (Hist., 11. 14330 et seq.), 
but it was ordered to be restored to the earl in 1215-16 
(Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, nos. 644, 664, 684), and afterwards 
became the chief castle of his successors in Leix. 


cipal counsellors, and certainly when regent for 
Henry III he did not leave England. 

I have dealt with the life of the great Earl 
Marshal, so far as it was concerned with Ireland, 
in some detail, because trustworthy details 
concerning him, though not generally known,^ 
happen to be forthcoming, and we are thus able 
to form a completer picture of him than of any 
other Anglo-Norman leader of his time. He His char- 

^ acter and 

must not, however, be taken as an average work in 
example of an Anglo-Norman feudal lord, but 
rather as one of the finest human products of the 
feudal system : brave, generous, upright, and 
ever true to his lights, the highest realized type 
of chivalry. So far as appears, with the excep- 
tion of the skirmish carried on by his men to 
baffle the intrigues of King John and Meiler, 
he engaged in no wars or fighting in Ireland. 
His work was entirely one of construction — to 
build up and perfect, so far as he could, the 
feudal organization which was to give to his 
Liberty of Leinster, for about a century, a peace 
and prosperity and a reign of law hitherto 
unknown in Ireland. So far indeed as this peace 
was infringed within his fief during this period, 
the infringement, as we shall see, was almost 
entirely due to dissensions among the feudal 
lords themselves. His connexion with Ireland, 

1 Miss Norgate has made good use of the Marshal's 
biography in the ' Angevin Kings ' and ' John Lackland '. 


indeed, was only a comparatively uneventful 
episode in an eventful life. With the govern- 
ment of the country he had little or nothing 
to do, but only with that of his liberty. He was 
too upright and too independent a man for John, 
while his will was unfettered, to choose as his 
minister. Almost to the last John viewed him 
with unmerited jealousy and suspicion. But 
when the deserted king found himself in dire 
straits he made use of the marshal's extra- 
ordinary loyalty and known integrity to help 
him out of his difficulties. It would have been 
well for the success of the new regime in Ireland 
had William Marshal been invested with the 
chief official power, but he was called away, even 
from the humbler work of organizing and deve- 
loping his fief, to greater issues elsewhere. 

As throwing a further light on the mind of 

The final this great man, the final scene, gleaned from his 

biography, may be referred to here, though 

much was to happen before it took place. In 

May 1 219, as he lay on his death-bed, his 

faithful follower Henry Fitz Gerald, probably 

inspired by some cleric, said to him : ' Sire, it is 

right to think of your salvation. Death is no 

respecter of persons, and the clergy teach us 

that nobody shall be saved who does not restore 

what he has taken.' The Marshal replied : 

' Henry, listen to me a moment. The clergy 

are too hard on us. They seek to shave us too 



close. I have taken in my time 500 knights, 
and have retained their arms, horses, and 
accoutrements. If the kingdom of heaven is 
closed to me for this, there is nothing to be done ; 
for I cannot give them back. I can do no more 
for God than give myself up to him, while 
repenting of all the wrongs I have done. . . . 
Either the clergy are wrong in their reasoning 
or no man can be saved.' ' Sire,' said John 
d'Erlee, ' that is the very truth ; but I warrant 
there is hardly one of us who in his last days 
would dare to say as much.' ^ The marshal's 
sentiments have indeed a surprisingly modern ring 
about them. A little later, when it was a ques- 
tion what should be done with the rich robes and 
furs he had for ceremonial purposes, a cleric 
named Philip suggested that they would fetch 
a great sum for purchasing his salvation. ' Hold 
thy peace, bad man,' said the earl. ' I have had 
too much of your counsel, and want no more 
of it. A plague on bad counsellors ! It will 
soon be Whitsuntide, when my knights will want 
their robes. It will be the last time that I shall 
give them to them, and you seek to cajole me 
out of them ! ' And then he ordered the robes 
to be distributed among his men, and more to be 
procured if there were not enough for all.^ Yet 
it would be a great mistake to suppose that 
William the Marshal had freed himself generally 
1 Histoire, 11. 18461-501. 2 ibid., 11. 18675-18716. 


from mediaeval ideas about the Church. He 
was its firm friend and munificent patron. He 
had founded and endowed monasteries at 
Tintern, Duiske or Graig-na-Managh, and Kil- 
kenny, in Ireland, and he remembered them 
handsomely in his will. It was to the Pope's 
legate that he handed over the guardianship of 
the young king. One of his last acts, touchingly 
described by his biographer, was to take an 
affectionate farewell of his wife, and symbolically 
give himself up to God and become a Templar. 
But with all his extraordinary loyalty to throne 
and Church, he never feared to withstand either 
king or priest when his reason and conscience 
forbade him to perform their will. 

We shall now describe the earl's principal 
dealings with his fief, so far as we can ascertain 
them : — 

From the spring of 1207, then, to the spring 
of 1213, William the Marshal abode almost con- 
tinuously in Ireland, and it is to this period that 
most of his doings there are to be referred. He 
Kilkenny chose Kilkenny as his principal place of abode, 
seat of and made it the chief centre of his whole lord- 
shfp.^^^ ship, and to him and his son William the early 
greatness of that town is mainly due. Indeed, 
the rapid development of Ossor}^ which in the 
course of a generation completely outstripped 
the other divisions of Leinster, progressive as 
they too were, may be traced to his influence. 


As we have seen, Strongbow made grants of Previous 
lands at the two extremities of Ossory, at 
Aghaboe and Iverk.^ It is probable, too, that in 
his time were erected the motes of Castlecomer 
and Odagh, which afterwards became centres of 
important seignorial manors.^ He even erected 
a similar mote at Kilkenny, which was, how- 
ever, abandoned by its garrison and destroyed 
by Donnell O'Brien, the bitter foe of Ossory, in 
1173.^ During the minority of Isabel de Clare, 
John, as Dominus Hiberniae, appears to have 
made further grants of lands on the borders of 
Ossory. To him should, perhaps, be ascribed the 
grant of Gowran to Theobald Walter, as well 
as grants of lands to Manasser Arsic, Richard 
Fitz Fulk, and others in the north of the present 
County Kilkenny.* 

As early as 1185 John erected the mote- 
fortress of Tibberaghny on the south-western 
frontier, and this afterwards became the centre 
of a de Burgh manor. In Central Ossory, how- 
ever, Donnell Mac Gillapatrick seems to have 

1 Supra, vol. i, pp. 388-9. 

2 For the grounds of this suggestion and for the Anglo- 
Norman settlement in Ossory generally, see my paper on 
' Motes and Norman Castles in Ossory ', Journ. R. S. A. I. 
1909, pp. 318-42. 3 Sujyra, vol. i, p. 332. 

* See John's charter to Jerpoint confirmatory of grants 
to that monastery prior to c. 1189, and for the identification 
of the places mentioned see Journ. R. S. A. I., as above, 
p. 315. 


ruled undisturbed, under English protection, up 
to his death in 1185.^ 

How or exactly when the Mac Gillapatricks 
were ousted from Central Ossory we do not 
know. Certainly we hear of no fighting or violent 
expulsion, and it may have been a gradual 
process. Of Melaghlin, DonneU's successor, 
nothing is recorded except his death in 1193.^ 
When next we hear of the family they were 
located near Slieve Bloom, where they were 
probably assigned lands, and where they lived 
as Irish chieftains for centuries, at first appar- 
ently in amity with their English neighbours.^ 

1 He made a grant of Kilferagh, near Kilkenny, to John 
Cumin, Archbishop of Dubhn, between 1181 and 1185 
(Crede Mihi, no. xxxiii) ; and about the same time he granted 
numerous lands to Jerpoint (see John's confirmatory 
charter, c. 1189, in Dugdale's Monasticon Angl.). He has 
indeed been usually regarded as the founder of Jerpoint, 
but there appears to have been a Cistercian monastery here, 
from which sprang the monastery of Killenny prior to 1165 : 
Facsimiles Nat. MSS. Ireland, pt. ii, pi. Ixii, and Carrigan's 
History of Ossory, vol. iv, pp. 279-84. It is probable, 
however, that the splendid abbey church of Jerpoint was 
commenced soon after the monastery was endowed by King 
Donnell and the Norman benefactors mentioned in John's 
charter. Some features of the existing ruins seem to 
indicate this period for their original construction. 

2 Ann. Loch Ce, 1193. 

•"' In 1213 Donnell Clannagh Mac Gillapa trick and other 
Irish chieftains ' gave an overthrow to Cormac Mac Art 
' Melaghlin ', a determined foe of the English and one who 
had recently defeated the justiciar, John de Gray, in Fircal : 
Ann. Clonmacnois, 1212 {rede 1213). 


In 1192, soon after Earl William Marshal Kilkenny 
obtained seisin of his lands, a castle is said to 
have been built at Kilkenny.^ Perhaps this 
castle was little more than a strengthening or 
reconstruction of Strongbow's mote. Whatever 
may have been its precise form, the original 
mote appears to have been preserved, and even 
as late as the year 1307 formed part of the 
precincts of the castle.^ From about the time 
of the erection of this castle we may probably 
date the commencement of the sub-infeudation 
of Central Ossory. It must have been about 
this time that the earl gave Geoffrey Fitz Robert Geoffrey 
a grant of lands on the King's river, which Robert 
formed the ' Barony ' of Kells. Here Geoffrey 
erected a mote, which still remains with the 
later stone walls of the castle-bawn running up 
towards it. A small town grew up in connexion 
with the castle. Close by he founded the great 
priory of Kells, to rule which he brought four 
canons from the priory of Bodmin, in Cornwall.^ 

^ Ann. Inisfallen, Dublin MS., and Ware's Annals, 1192. 
A castle at Kilkenny is alluded to in a grant by Felix O'Dulany 
(ob. 1202) : Hist, of St. Canice, Graves and Prim, p. 29. 

2 In an Extent of the lands and tenements in the burgh 
of Kilkenny which belonged to Joan, Countess of Gloucester, 
who died April 19, 1307, it was found that she held in the 
vill of Kilkenny a castle in which were ' una aula, quatuor 
turres, una capella, una mota, et alie domus diverse ad idem 
castrum necessarie ' : Inquis. P. M., 35 Ed. I, no. 47, m. 34. 

^ The Registrum Chartarum Monasterii B. M. de Kenlis in 
Osseria is only known to us by an abstract made by Sir 

1226 II P 




Geoffrey was the earl's seneschal of Leinster at 
the beginning of the thirteenth century,^ and 
perhaps earlier. Higher up the King's river 
was formed the seignorial manor of Callan. 
Two of the Marshal's followers, John d'Erlee, his 
biographer, and Maillard, his standard-bearer, 
were given lands at Erleystown, now corruptly 
Earlstown, and at Mallardstown, between Callan 
and Kells. Other probable feoffees of the earl 
were Thomas Fitz Anthony, afterwards his senes- 
chal, and William de St. Leger. The former 
founded the priory of Inistioge, and held the 
manor of Grenan, or Thomastown, as the vill 
came to be called after its founder. The latter, 
besides the manor of RosconneU in the north, 
held lands at Tullaghanbrogue, near Kilkenny. 
Kilkenny. Kilkenny itself, though not mentioned in the 
early centuries for which we have annalistic 
records, and, so far as is known, not at any time 
the seat of the kings of Ossory, must have 
been an ecclesiastical site of some importance in 




James Ware, of which there are copies, T. C. D., F. 4. 23, 
and Brit. Mus., Lansdowne, 418. No foundation charter is 
forthcoming, but the register contains a sort of confirmatory 
memorandum by Geoffrey referring to his grant and its 
confirmation by Earl William Marshal. This memorandum 
must be dated after 1202. The date usually assigned for 
the foundation of the monastery is 1193. For the charter 
to the town of Kells, see Chartae, &c., p. 16. 

1 He was seneschal when Meiler Fitz Henry was justiciar : 
Reg. St. Thomas's, Dublin, p. 125. 


pre-Norman times, as is shown by its ancient 
ecclesiastical round tower, and by some slight 
remains which have been discovered of a 
Romanesque church.^ From 1192, when the 
first castle of the Marshals was built, we may 
trace the beginnings of the civil importance of 
the town. At this time the church at Aghaboe 
was the cathedral church of the diocese of 
Ossory, and it is stated to have so remained up 
to the death of Bishop Felix O'Dulany in 1202.^ 
The new bishop, Hugh le Rous, one of the canons 
brought from Bodmin to rule the new priory at 
Kells, was no doubt readily persuaded by Earl 
William to move the seat of the bishopric from 
the march-lands of Aghaboe to the new seignorial 
centre at Kilkenny. He gave the see-lands of 
Aghaboe to the earl in exchange for other lands 
in more settled districts near Kilkenny,^ and also 
granted to him, ' to enable him to enlarge his 

^ The burning of Cill Cainnigh, meaning probably the 
church and ecclesiastical buildings of Kilkenny, is recorded 
by the Four Masters under dates 1085 and 1114. In 1169 
Maurice de Prendergast and his band of about 200 men 
lodged for the night at Kilkenny : Song of Dermot, 1. 1311. 

2 Nomina Episcoporum Ossoriensium, &c., Brit. Mus., 
Sloane MS. 4796. Transcribed in Carrigan's History of 
Ossory, Appendix, vol. i. 

3 For the deeds effecting this exchange see Journ. R. S.A.I. 
1858-9, pp. 327-9. The bishop's name is usually written 
' de Rous ', but seemingly on no contemporary authority. 
As it was translated Rufus, I have ventured to restore 
' le Rous ', 0. Fr. for le Roux. 



vill of Kilkenny,' some of the land on which 
the present town is built.^ Between 1207 and 
1211 the earl granted a full charter of liberties 
to the burgesses of Kilkenny, which must have 
already become an important town.^ He is 
said to have built a castle there after 1207,* 
and, though no early authority is quoted for this 
statement, it is probable that when he came to 
dwell in Kilkenny he built a regular stone castle 
for his habitation. 
Religious The beautiful cathedral of Kilkenny was 
tions. probably completed about the middle of the 
thirteenth century, but the precise date of its 
commencement is uncertain. The architecture 
of the nave is certainly later than Earl William's 
time, but in spite of the statement in a sixteenth- 
century compilation,* that Hugh de Mapilton 

1 Liber Albus Ossoriensis ; Cal, Docs. Ireland, vol. ii, 
no. 861. The portion of land granted is described as 
* extending from Keuerocke's well to the river called 
Bregath running under Coterel bridge '. Keuerocke's well 
probably represents Tobar Chiarog or St. Ciaran's well. It 
has been identified with a well near the centre of the town, 
south of the old market, in the garden of what is supj)osed 
to have been the house of the famous Kyteler family. 
Coterel bridge is represented by the Watergate bridge over 
the Bregagh river, which henceforth separated the Irish 
town from the High or English town. 

2 Chartae Priv. et Immun., p. 33. 
^ Hanmer, p. 173 ; Cox, p. 54. 

* Nomina Episcoporum Ossoriensium, &c., Sloane MS. 
4796, Brit. Mus. 


(bishop from 1251 to 1260) was the first founder 
of the church, it is on architectural and general 
grounds probable that the choir, at least, was 
built in the time of Earl William or of his eldest 
son. To the elder William Marshal is attri- 
buted the foundation of the priory of St. John 
the Evangelist on the left bank of the river 
at Kilkenny, and this is perhaps in substance 
correct, but the charter granting a new site 
and rich endowments to the priory, quoted as 
evidence thereof, was actually given not by 
him, but by his son, William Marshal junior, 
probably about 1223.^ Besides founding the 
Monastery de Voto, or Tintern Minor, already 
mentioned, and confirming the charter of Dun- 
brody, the elder William Marshal founded 

1 From this charter (Dugdale, vi. 1143) it appears that 
the friary buildings had previously been commenced close 
to St. John's Bridge. The friars were here prior to 1202, 
as is evidenced by a charter of Fehx O'Dulany contained 
in the cartulary of the priory. This site may have been given 
them by the elder Wilham Marshal. His son moved them 
'ad caput parvi pontis de Kilkennia', i.e. to the site of 
the present St. John's church, near the bridge over the mill- 
stream in St. John's Street. The charters of these two 
earls are frequently confused, but a comparison of the 
witnesses to the undoubted charters of the younger William 
Marshal, Reg. St. Thomas's, no. 137, and the second charter 
to Kilkenny, dated April 5, 1223 (Chartae Priv. et Immun., 
p. 34, and cf . p. 80), with the charters to St. John's Priory 
(Dugdale, vi. 1143) and to the burgesses of Carlow (Chartae, 
&c., pp. 37-8), will show that these four charters were 
executed by the same person and about the same time. 


another Cistercian house known as Duiske, or 
as it was afterwards called Graig-na-managh.^ 
Other foundations attributed to the earl are the 
priory of St. John at Wexford for knights of the 
Hospital, and an Augustinian priory at Kilrush 
in the County Kildare. 
Efforts to But more important for the temporal pros- 


trade. Parity of Leinster than the numerous religious 
houses founded by the earl and the greater 
landholders about this time, were the efforts 
made to foster trade and commerce and civic 
life, which, together with the advance in agricul- 
ture, changed the whole conditions of living in 
the province. Now that Leinster was really 
under one lord increased use was made of the 
great river-ways for transport, and the rivers 
themselves were bridged in places, not with 
a view to plunder, but to facilitate peaceful 
intercourse and trade. One of the earl's first 
cares was to establish a port on the Barrow in 
The port his manor of Ross, and to give it an independent 
^ ^^^' existence, at the same time bridging the river 
at this point, so as to connect the new town 
with the road to Kilkenny. The place was 
variously called ' William Marshal's town ', ' the 
town of the new bridge of Ross ', or ' Rosponte', 
and afterwards New Ross, to distinguish it from 
Old Ross, as the seat of the manor came to be 
called. Situated within the tidal way, New Ross 
^ Facsimiles Nat. MSS. Ireland, vol. ii, no. Ixix. 


was within reach of the largest merchant vessels 
of the time. From it, too, in boats of light 
draught, goods could be brought up the Nore to 
Inistioge and Thomastown, if not to Kilkenny, 
and up the Barrow to St. MuUins, Graig-na- 
managh, Carlow, and even as far as Athy.^ 
Thus New Ross became the port of South 
Leinster. In the course of the thirteenth century 
its trade far outstripped that of Wexford, and 
appears even to have surpassed that of Water- 
ford, in spite of the royal favour shown to the 
latter town.^ 

Indeed, the formation of towns was perhaps Forma- 

, . tion and 

the most significant feature of the new regime, growth of 
Apart from the Scandinavian seaports, which ^^^' 
themselves were the first to expand under 
Norman rule, small towns grew up in the time 
of the Marshals under the protection of the 
castles at the seignorial manors of Ferns, Old 
Ross, the Island, Carrick on Slaney, and Bannow, 
in the County Wexford ; at Carlow, Forth 
0' Nolan, and St. Mullins, in County Carlow ; 

1 Cal. Justiciary Rolls (1298), p. 202. The jurors pre- 
sented that the passage of boats that used to come from 
Ross to Athy was obstructed by a weir. 

2 Thus for the five years following May 4, 1275, the 
receipts from the ' new custom ' granted to the Crown 
amounted in New Ross to £2632, in Waterford to £1865, 
and in Wexford to only £22 : Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. ii, 
no. 1902, and Irish Pipe Rolls, 36th Rep. Dep. Keeper, 
which makes some corrections and additions. 


at Kilkenny, Callan, Castlecomer, Odagh, and 
Aghaboe, in Ossory ; at Kildare ; and at 
Dunamase ; and the same thing in a less degree 
followed on the erection of many of the castles 
of subordinate grantees. Thus may be said to 
have commenced civic life in Ireland, and this 
civic life rendered possible the growth of trade, 
and pari passu with that growth the towns 
themselves grew and prospered. 




King John's confirmatory grant of the land of 
Leinster to WiUiam Marshal, Earl of Pembroke, 
is dated the 28th of March, 1208 (Rot. Chart., 
9 John, p. 176). It is nearly similar in form to 
the confirmatory grant of the land of Meath 
to Walter de Lacy four weeks later (ibid., p. 178). 
Both grants contain reservations to the Crown 
of rights which seem not to have been reserved in 
the original charters of Henry II, or in the charter 
by which John, when Earl of Mortain, restored 
the land of Meath to Walter de Lacy. Henry 
had granted the land of Meath to Hugh de Lacy 
to hold from the king and his heirs 'as Mur- 
chardus Hu Melachlin or any other before or 
after him better held the same', and Hugh was 
to have ' all liberties which Henry had or was 
able to give there '. But now John took care, 
both in the case of Leinster and of Meath, 
expressly to reserve to himself and his heirs the 
pleas of the Crown, namely of treasure-trove, 
rape, forestalling, and arson, and the plea where 
one appeals another for felonious breach of the 
peace, and he provided for appeals to the king's 
court in case of default of justice in the lord's 
court, and in the case of complaints of injury 
done by the lord himself or his court. Cross- 
lands and dignities appurtenant to them (i. e. 
church-lands and the higher ecclesiastical pre- 


ferments) were also reserved to the Crown. One 
disputed case of feudal incidents seems to have 
been provided for favourably to the lord of the 
liberty. Where a tenant-in-chief died, leaving 
heirs who were minors, the Crown latterly seems 
to have claimed the custody of all his lands, 
even of those which he held of some mesne lord, 
and this was one of the grievances of the barons 
of England. John now granted to Walter de 
Lacy and William Marshal that in such a case 
they should have the custody of fees held of 
themselves, but that the ' marriages ' of the 
heirs should belong to the Crown. 



At the commencement of the year 1210, King King 

"^ John 

John, in his home dominions at least, was to all at the 
appearance at the height of his personal power, ^f Ms 
It is true that he had lost nearly all his ancestral ^^^^^^^^ 
possessions in France, that England lay under 
the papal interdict, and that he himself was 
excommunicate, but the loss of his heritage over 
sea caused him to concentrate his attention upon 
his island dominions, and the fulminations of the 
Pope, for the moment at all events, served as 
a pretext for enriching himself at the expense of 
the fugitive clergy. In Ireland indeed, to which 
the interdict did not apply, these fulminations 
hardly resounded at all.^ In the summer of 1209 
William the Lion was forced to come to terms 
with John, and in October — ' what had never 

1 So little did the Irish clergy enter into the spirit of the 
contest of their class in England against the king that 
Eugenius the Primate (who, Hke Stephen Langton, had been 
designated by the Pope in opposition to the royal nominee) 
accepted in July 1207 a commission from the king to execute 
the episcopal ofl&ce in the see of Exeter, left derehct owing 
to the Interdict : Rot. Claus., 9 John, m. 17 (p. 88). 


been heard of in times past ' — all the Welsh 
nobles came to him at Woodstock and did him 
homage. In the same year, too, the king received 
homage from all his free tenants, and even from 
boys of twelve years of age, throughout the 
whole kingdom, and after they had done fealty 
he dismissed them with the kiss of peace.^ 
' There was not a man in the land,' complains 
one chronicler, ' who could resist his will in 
anything.' ^ Another, with reference to the 
clergy, bitterly says : ' When they saw the 
wolf coming they quitted the sheep and fled.' ^ 
Matilda There was one baron, however, who failed to 
refuses givc the hostagcs required in 1208, and who 
hostages ^^^ ^^ Ireland to escape the king's wrath. 
When the king's messengers came to William de 
Braose and demanded hostages, William's wife, 
Matilda de St. Valery, with feminine boldness 
taking the word out of her husband's mouth, 
replied : ' I will not deliver up my son to your 
lord. King John, for he basely murdered his 
nephew Arthur, when he should have kept him 
in honourable custody.' Her husband reproved 
her foolish tongue and offered, if he had offended, 
to give satisfaction according to the judgement of 
his peers. But this was of no avail. When the 
king heard of it he secretly sent soldiers and 

1 Roger of Wendover, vol. ii, pp. 50-1 . Rymer's Foedera, 
vol. i, pt. 1, p. 103. 2 Gerv. Cant., vol. ii, p. 100. 

^ Roger of Wendover, vol. ii, p. 48. 



bailiffs to seize William and his whole family. 
The latter, however^ forewarned, fled with his 
wife and sons to Ireland.^ 

In a document ^ which John put forward John's 
to the world in 1210, and which was evidently for his 
intended by him as a justification of his actions agaJ^gt 
towards William de Braose, a different com- ^^^ 
plexion is sought to be given to the matter. 
William de Braose owed a large sum to the king 
in respect of the lordship of Limerick, which, 
owing to the opposition of the barons already 
in occupation under grants from the Crown, had 
doubtless brought him no profit. John repre- 
sents his action as arising out of William's 
defaults in payment and resistance to the 
processes of the law. According to the above 
document, John ordered his bailiff, Gerard de 
Athiis,^ to distrain on William's Welsh property 
for the amount of the debt, which John charac- 
teristically exaggerates.* An arrangement is then 

1 Rog. Wend., vol. ii, pp. 48-9, sub anno 1208. 

■^ Rymer's Foedera, vol. i, pt. 1, p. 107. 

^ It is worth noting that one of the provisions ^vrung 
from John by Magna Carta was : ' Nos amovebimus penitus 
de balliis parentes Gerardi de Athyes quod de cetero nuUam 
habeant balliam in Anglia.' 

4 In 1205-6 William owed £2865 6s. 8d. (Pipe, 7 John, 
Rot. 8), and the accomit stood at the same figure in 1209-10 : 
ibid., 11 John, Rot. 1. John says that William owed 5,000 
marks, which was the sum originally agreed to be paid at 
the rate of 500 marks a year. William had already paid 
£468, which John omits to notice. John also claimed five 


said to have been made by which William sur- 
rendered his castles in Wales to be held by the 
king, mortgaged all his lands in England, and 
gave hostages, until his debts should be paid. 
Nevertheless, William attempted with a large 
force to enter his castles, and, failing in this, 
burned half the town of Leominster. Whereupon 
John sent Gerard de Athiis to capture him, but 
William fled with his family to Ireland, and was 
there harboured by William Marshal and Walter 
and Hugh de Lacy. The latter undertook that 
William would make satisfaction, and that if he 
failed to do so they would no longer harbour him. 
This promise not being kept, the king raised an 
army with the intention of going himself to 

It is not difficult to accept John's version of 
the facts as in the main correct, though exag- 
gerated and misleading, and yet believe that the 
true motive for his vindictiveness against Wil- 
liam de Braose was personal animosity connected 
with the tragic fate of Arthur of Brittany. 
William de Braose had been given the custody 
of Arthur before he was handed over to Hubert 
de Burgh, and perhaps William knew more 
about the real end of Arthur than we do. 

It was in the hope of finding a refuge with his 

years of the farm of the city of Limerick (at 100 marks a 
year, from 1203-8), but he omits to notice that during 
part of this time Meiler held the city for the king. 


son-in-law, Walter de Lacy, that William de 
Braose fled with his family to Ireland. This was 
probably in the winter of 1208-9.^ He was 
driven by stress of weather to Wicklow, where 
Earl William Marshal was then sojourning, and De 
the earl gave him and his family kindly shelter sheltered 
and entertained them for twenty days. When EarV^ 
the justiciar, John de Gray, heard of it he at ^^arshai. 
once informed the earl that he was harbouring 
the king's traitor, and on the part of the king 
ordered the earl to deliver him up to him without 
delay. The Marshal replied that he had only 
sheltered his lord,^ as he was bound to do, and 
that he did not know that the king was other- 
wise than well disposed towards him. To deliver 

^ The flight of William de Braose to Ireland is placed in 
1208 by Roger de Wendover (vol. ii, p. 49) and by the 
Laud MS. Annals, Chart. St. Mary's, Dublin, vol. ii, p. 310 ; 
of. Brut y Tywys. 1207. Miss Norgate, however, places it 
in 1209, but without giving her authority : John Lackland, 
p. 150. From the passage in L'Histoire de G. le Marechal 
immediately referred to it appears that the flight took place 
when John de Gray Avas justiciar. Unfortunately, in the 
absence of the Patent and Close Rolls for 1209, the date 
of John de Gray's appointment is uncertain. The Four 
Masters place it in 1208 {recte 1209). He was certainly in 
Ireland at the close of 1209 (Rot. Misae, p. 144), and Hugh 
de Lacy, if appointed justiciar in the autumn of 1208, 
would probably have been soon superseded owing to his 
comiexion with William de Braose. 

■^ How William de Braose was the Marshal's seignor is 
obscure. Possibly it was in respect of some of the de Clare 
property in Wales. 


him up now to the bishop would be a treachery 
which he refused to commit. Accordingly he 
conducted him safely to Walter de Lacy.^ The 
Marshal was prepared to resist John's will and 
risk the loss of his fief rather than do a dis- 
honourable act. 
King According to his own account, then, it was 

motive in simply to chastise William de Braose and his 
Ireland *° aiders and abettors, and to enforce payment of 
a crown debt, that John made his expedition to 
Ireland in the summer of 1210. This may seem 
a mean and paltry motive for the royal expedi- 
tion, but John's motives were often mean and 
paltry. Moreover, he certainly did not come to 
quell dissension among the barons, for he had 
received the dissentient barons into favour two 
years previously, and since Meiler was discredited 
and superseded there were no further dissensions. 
Nor was there any turbulence among the barons, 
except what had been excited by John's relent- 
less persecution of William de Braose, his family, 
and those who sheltered them. Even more 
certainly he did not come either to protect the 
Irish from aggression or to put down their 
revolt, though all these causes have been alleged. 
There had been no inter-racial conflicts for some 
years, while, as we shall see, the policy of his 
new minister, John de Gray, was first to obtain 
control in Connaught, and next to subdue the 
1 Histoire, 11. 14137-232. 


chieftains of the north. It will be seen, too, 
that all John's military efforts, when he was in 
Ireland, were expended in taking possession of 
the lands and castles of the de Lacys, and in 
endeavouring to capture their persons, as well as 
to hunt down Maud de Braose and her family. 

As to William de Braose himself, John in his John's 
elaborate statement goes on to say that William c?n-°^^ 
came to the neighbourhood of Pembroke, where ti'^^ed. 
the king was with his army, and offered by 
his intermediaries 40,000 marks for the king's 
peace. But the king replied that he well knew 
that William was not his own master at all, 
but was ruled by his wife, who was in Ireland,^ 
and proposed that William should accompany 
him to Ireland and that the matter should be 
settled there. William, however, remained in 
Wales. Evidently he feared to put himself into 
John's power. 

One incident of disturbance is indeed usually Black 
here mentioned as having taken place in 1209, ^°°^^y- 
namely, a massacre of 300 of the citizens of 
Dublin, who were making holiday near the town 
on a certain Easter Monday. This day, remem- 
bered as Black Monday, is said to have been 
celebrated in Elizabeth's time by the mayor, 

1 So I understand the passage : ' Quod bene novimus quod 
non erat omnino in potestate sua, sed magis in potestate 
uxoris suae quae fuit in Hibernia ' : Rymer's Foedera, vol. r, 
pt. i, p. 107. 

1226 n Q 


sheriffs, and citizens feasting on the spot, and 
daring the enemy to come and attack them. 
But the sole authority for this story is Hanmer,^ 
who, it should be needless to say, is no authority 
for the thirteenth century. His account of the 
period is often a mere travesty of the facts, and 
sometimes dull invention. Black Monday may 
have been celebrated in Hanmer's time, as he 
says, and the tradition of a massacre on the 
spot may have been well founded, but there is 
good reason for thinking that in ascribing it to 
the year 1209 tradition (or Hanmer) antedated it 
by half a century at least, as we have no evidence 
of any raids of the O'Birnes or the O'Tooles until 
near the close of the reign of Henry III. 
John's We shall now endeavour to follow John in his 

progress in Ireland. Unfortunately there is at 
this period a great gap in the series of enrolments 
which from the beginning of John's reign have 
thrown authentic light on affairs in Ireland. The 
Patent, Close, Charter, and Fine Rolls for the 
eleventh to the thirteenth years of John's reign 
are missing. Also the Close Rolls for the tenth 
John. Had these been preserved we should 
probably have a much clearer idea of what had 
happened in Ireland immediately prior to John's 
visit, and of his transactions during his visit. 
Covering the period of his stay in Ireland we 
have indeed the Prestita Roll of the twelfth 
1 Hanmer's Chronicle (1633).. p. 186. Hanmer died in 1604. 





regnal year. This contains accounts of payments 
made to the Earl of SaHsbury and other officials, 
for their fees and for the pay of soldiers and sailors 
and others connected with the expedition. It 
gives long lists of the knights and others who 
accompanied the expedition, and, above all, 
from it we can glean an authentic itinerary of 
the king's visit. ^ We are thus enabled to follow 
John's course almost from day to day, to note 
some of his transactions, and, by requisitioning 
information from other scattered sources, form 
a correct, though no doubt incomplete, idea of 
the purpose, scope, and results of his expedition. 

From the 3rd to the 16th of June John was Cross on 
at Cross on the sea, below Pembroke, the usual jun?^' 
place of embarkation.^ Here he was busy ^~^^' 
making final arrangements for the expedition, 
and made payments to knights, mariners, &c., 
amounting to £1,433 13^. 6d. His half-brother, 
William Longsword, Earl of Salisbury, supposed 
to be son of Henry II by Rosamond Clifford, 
was in chief command of the army. John 
landed at Crook, near Waterford, on June 20, Crook, 
thus following precisely the route which his 

1 The Rotulus de Prestito does not account for all of the 
53 dozen skins of parchment which John brought with him 
to Ireland : Rot. Misae, 11 John, p. 167. 

2 ' Apud Crucem subtus Penbroc ' or 'super mare'. Cf. 
Song of Dermot, 1. 2590, note ; where, however, delete 
the suggestion that Carew Cross marks the place. More 
probably it was near Pembroke Dock. 



father had adopted thirty-nine years before, and 
which he himself seems to have taken in 1185. 
At Crook he was joined by the justiciar, the 
Bishop of Norwich, with a body of Irish troops. 
John, no doubt, visited Waterford, where, we are 
told, Donough Cairbrech O'Brien repaired to 
make his submission, and received a charter 
for Carrigogunnell and the lordship thereunto 
belonging at a yearly rent of sixty marks.^ 
New On June 21 John was at New Ross,^ having 

Ross, ' ^ 

June 21. perhaps come from Crook or Waterford by river. 
This town owed its origin to William Marshal, 
or perhaps, following tradition, we should say, 
to the Countess Isabel. It is generally supposed, 
indeed, to have been the site of a great monastery 
founded by St. Abban in the sixth century, but 
the identification is very doubtful, and in any 
case this monastery seems to have disappeared 
before the arrival of the Normans. Situated on 
the banks of a great navigable river. New Ross 
soon became the principal port of the lordship 
of Leinster, in the race for trade outpacing the 
old Scandinavian port of Wexford, and rivalling 
the king's vill of Waterford. So keenly did the 
latter port feel the rivalry that for nearly two 
centuries it endeavoured to deprive New Ross 

1 Ann. Inisfallen (Dublin MS.), 1209. As to tliis grant 
see ante, p. 168, note 2. 

2 'Apud pontem novum,' also referred to as 'villa Willielmi 


of the privileges of a trading port. Already at 
the date of John's visit William ]\Iarshal had 
spanned the" river with a wooden bridge at the 
spot, thus facilitating the connexion with Kil- 
kenny. Hence, the town was called villa 
novi pontis, or villa de Eosponte. The caput of 
the manor, however, throughout the century was 
at Old Ross, some five miles to the east, where 
a mote still marks the original castle-site. 

Next day John was at a wood near the J^®.^'" 

•^ mis- 

land of Thomas Fitz Anthony.^ He was one tiogue, 

June 22. 

of William Marshal's principal tenants, and at 
a later period his seneschal. Thomastown, 
situated at a bend of the river Nore about ten 
miles above its junction with the Barrow, pre- 
serves the name of Thomas Fitz Anthony. He 
founded a monastery for canons regular at 
Inistiogue.^ There is a mote here, and it may 
have been the caput of the manor at the time 
of John's visit, and the wood where he halted 
and made a payment for ' six galleys going with 
Geoffrey de Lucy in search of pirates ' may be 
now represented by Woodstock demesne. He 
probably went on to Earl William Marshal's 
castle of Kilkenny for the night. Here he and 

1 'ApudBoscum juxta terrain Thome filiiAntonii'. He is 
called seneschal of Leinster in 1215 (C. D. I., vol. i, no. 673). 
He probably succeeded in that office Geoffrey Fitz Robert, 
baron of Kells, who died circa 1211. 

2 Circa 1206, Dugdale, Mon. Angl., vol. ii, p. 1041 ; but 
according to Archdall, circa 1210. 


Kilkenny, his host Were entertained by the earl, who had 
22-4. accompanied him from Pembroke/ We have 
abready noted the early history of this castle, 
so far as it is ascertainable, and have shown 
that what became known as the ' High town ' 
or ' English town ' of Kilkenny owed its origin 
and incorporation to the earl. It was the earl's 
chief seat in Leinster, and the river was already 
spanned by a bridge connecting the town with 
the new foundation of the priory of St. John's 
on the north-eastern side. 

On June 24 John was still at Kilkenny, and 

on the 26th he was at Naas.^ At this time the 

baron of Naas was William Fitz William.* In a 

Naas, pedigree in the Gormanston Register he appears 

as second son of the William to whom John 

confirmed Naas in 1185, but he must hav^e been 

older than his brother David, whom he preceded 

in the barony. 

Dublin, On June 28 John was at Dublin. Here he 

28-9. probably stayed at the rich abbey of St. Thomas,* 

1 Hist. G. le Mar., 11. 14259-66. John probably arrived 
at Kilkenny on the evening of the 22nd June and left on 
the morning of the 24th : Rot. de Prest., pp. 247 and 179. 

2 From Kilkenny to Naas must have been two days' 
journey. One night was perhaps spent in tents : ' quando 
dominus Rex jacuit in papihonibus ' : Rot. de Prest., p. 181. 

3 Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, no. 448, and of. no. 89. Ho 
married the widow of Philip de Braose ; ibid., no. 962. 

' A battlemented building here was known in 1634 as 
* King John's chamber ' (Journ. R. S. A. I. 1907, p. 395). 


founded thirty-three years before. At Dublin 
he gave audience to some of the barons of Meath, 
who came to intercede on behalf of their lord, 
Walter de Lacy. In his name they offered his 
complete submission, endeavoured to dissociate 
him from the action of his brother Hugh, and 
prayed the king to relax his ire.^ The inter- 
cession was of no avail. John now proceeded 
to take possession of Walter's principal castles 
in Meath (as well as Hugh's), and it was not 
until 1215 that he came to an agreement with 
Walter for the restoration of his lands. 

On June 30 John advanced as far as Greenoge, Greenoge, 
in the barony of Ratoath and county of Meath, 
and on July 2 he was at Trim. He must there- 
fore have passed by Ratoath, where Hugh de 
Lacy had an important mote-castle, which was 
now seized by the king. Indeed, Hugh, as we 
have seen, held the whole barony of Ratoath 
(as well as that of Morgallion) of his brother 
Walter.^ By a deed which may be confidently 
assigned to this period John granted the whole 

1 These "barons of Meath were William le Petit, Richard 
de Tuit, Richard de Feipo, Richard de Capella, and Hugh 
Hose : Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, no. 402, According to 
WilHam of Newburgh (vol. ii, p. 511), ' Walterus de Lacy 
se et sua omnia ei reddidit, quod ilium postea poenituit, 
quia ilium praedictus rex abjurare omnia tenementa et 
terras et redditus quos habebat in Hibernia fecit, ipsumque 
postea et omnes suos de Anglia depulit.' 

2 Supra, p. 76. 


of Ratoath to Philip of Worcester for the ser- 
vice of one knight. Among the witnesses, who 
we may infer had not risen to arms with the 
de Lacys, were Richard Tyrell, Richard de 
Tuit, Wilham le Petit, Peter de Meset, Richard 
de Feipo, Martin de Mandeville, and Adam 

John was now accompanied by a considerable 
force, including, besides Flemish mercenaries, an 
Irish contingent from Munster and Desmond, and 
troops which came with Geoffrey de Marisco, 
Trim, Thomas Fitz Maurice, and others. At Trim, 
where John remained until July 4, he, no doubt, 
took Walter de Lacy's castle into his hands. 
It was one of those restored in 1215. What sort 
of castle it was is obscure. Probably the original 
mote-fortress had been vastly strengthened by 
stone walls, but it would seem that, like other 
Irish castles, it was too small for John to hold 
his court in it. Accordingly here, as in several 
other cases, his writs are dated at a mead 
(pratum) near the place. He evidently held his 
court under a tent in the open field. The keep, 
the oldest part of the existing castle-ruins at 
Trim, is of a peculiar plan. It may be described 

1 Gormanston Register, f. 6. The castle of Ratoath was 
restored to Walter de Lacy in 1216 : Rot. Pat., 18 John, 
p. 194, The large grant made about the same time to 
Philip of Worcester in Munster may perhaps be regarded 
as compensator}'. 


as a square with a square tower projecting from 
the middle of each of the four sides, thus forming 
a twenty-sided figure. It resembles in plan the 
keep of Warkworth castle in Northumberland, 
which is a square with a semi-octagonal pro- 
jection in the middle of each side. The latter 
keep is said to have been built in 1200, but the 
keep at Trim is probably somewhat later. It 
may be ascribed with much probability to about 
the year 1220.^ 

From Trim John moved by way of Ardbrac- Aid. 


can to Kells. At Ardbraccan, Cathal Crovderg 

1 To this year is assigned the building of the castle of 
Ath Truim in the Annals of Inisfallen (Dubhn MS.)- So 
in Hanmer's Chronicle (which is followed by Ware), with 
the confused addition that it was after the wars between 
WilHam Marshal and Hugh de Lacy, when Trim was be- 
sieged and brought to a lamentable plight, ' to prevent 
after-claps and subsequent calamities, the castle of Trim 
was builded ' (p. 189). But the siege of Trim took place in 
1224, and as the castle then withstood successfully for seven 
weeks all the efforts of so skilful a commander as WiUiam 
Marshal the j^ounger, we must infer that it was an excep- 
tionally strong castle (see Royal Letters, ed. Sliirley, vol. i, 
p. 500). Moreover, in the previous March, when the castle 
was in the king's hand, the justiciar was commanded to 
allow ' Walter de Lacy to have the hall, houses, and cham- 
bers in the castle of Trim, in which he and his retinue 
may dwell while he is fighting the enemies of the king 
and himself ' : Rot. Claus., 8 Hen. Ill, p. 591). From this 
mandate we may not only infer that a strong and well- 
provided castle then existed, but that the turris or keep was 
to be retained by the king's constable. All this bears out 
the date given in the Amials of Inisfallen. 


0' Conor, King of Connaught, made submission 
to King John, and accompanied him as far as 
Carrickfergus.^ John's prests on the 4th and 

Keils, 5th July are dated ' at a mead near Kells '. It 
is doubtful whether there was any castle here at 
this time. It was not one of those restored, and 
at any rate its site is unknown. Here John 
dispatched a small expeditionary force under 
John Marshal, probably to take possession of 
some other de Lacy strongholds. John himself 
now turned northwards to Uriel — probably 
taking possession of the castle of Nobber, which 
belonged to Hugh de Lacy, on the way — and 
stopping on the 7th at his own vill of Louth. 

Louth, There is a small mote at Louth, formerly con- 
nected with the town trench which marks the 
site of the castle.^ 

1 Ann. Clonmacnois, where Cathal is said to have ' come 
to the king's house ' at ' Tibreydultan called Ardbracken 
in Meath '. St. Ul tan's well {Tioprait Ultdin) is still 
pointed out at Ardbraccan close to the church. Land here 
as well as at Navan had been given to Jocelin de Angulo. 
A lofty mote on an esker-knoll at Navan, and a small mote 
on high ground near the church and village of Ardbraccan, 
mark the Norman centres. 

2 j'or this and other motes in the neighbourhood see my 
paper on ' Motes and Norman Castles in County Louth ', 
Joum. R. S. A. I. 1908, pp. 241-69. John paid his hunts- 
men on July 7 ' apud pratum juxta Luvet ' (Louth) : Rot, 
de Prest., p. 248 ; but after leaving Kells he made prests 
for his army ' apud pratum subtus aquam quandam que 
vocatur Struthe ' : ibid., p. 192. 'Struthe' represents the 
Irish sruth, ' a river,' perhaps the Dee near Nobber. 


On the 8th John was seemingly at Dundalk,^ Dun- 

J 11 /n\ 

the chief manor of Nicholas de Verdun. Here juiy s. ' 
he made a prest for 400 soldiers lately come 
[to their allegiance], who had been with Hugh 
de Lacy. Evidently in the face of the king's 
advance Hugh could no longer command the 
allegiance of all his followers. We are told that 
Hugh, ' when he found that the king was going 
north, burned his own castles in Machaire 
Conaille and Cuailgne (the baronies of Upper 
and Lower Dundalk) before the king's eyes, and 
also the castles which had been erected by the 
Earl of Ulster [John de Courcy ?] and the men 
of Uriel, and he himself fled to Carrickfergus, 
leaving the chiefs of his people burning and 
destroying the castles of the country.' ^ It is 
probable, then, that the mote-castle of Dundalk 
was one of those burned by Hugh de Lacy at this 
time. In spite of the agreement with Thomas 
de Verdun to which reference has already been 
made, Hugh seems to have claimed the castelry 
of Dundalk,^ but King John gave it to Nicholas 
de Verdun with the whole barony of Lower Dun- 
dalk, and Nicholas was now in John's army. 

From Dundalk John went to Carlingford, parlmg- 

° ford, 

where he seized the castle, which belonged to Juiy9-ii. 

1 ' Apud pratum juxta Cadelac ' (Gather Delgan ?). 

2 Ann. Inisfallen, Dublin MS. 1211. This passage is 
quoted by 0' Donovan, Four Masters, vol. iii, p. 164, note. 

3 Supra, p. 121, and see Reg. St. Thomas's, Dublin, p. 9. 


Hugh de Lacy. The existing ruins, in the main 
Edwardian, stand on a rock overlooking Carhng- 
ford Bay. It was retained as a royal castle until 
1 226, when it was restored to Hugh de Lacy.^ Here 
John stayed for three days (July 9-11), and made 
payments for carpenters, quarriers, ditchers, and 
miners, probably for the repair of injuries made 
by Hugh de Lacy on abandoning the castle. 

So far John had advanced without meeting any 
opposition, and, seemingly, had not unsheathed 
a sword. Hugh de Lacy, however, evidently 
hoped to defend his lordship of Ulster against 
him. The only practicable approach by land 
into Lecale was by a long and difficult detour 
between the Mourne Mountains on the south and 
those which culminate in Slieve Croob on the 
north. This was called the gate of Lecale, and 
it was already guarded by the castle of Dundrum, 
then known as the castle of Rath.^ As its ruins 

1 Rot. Pat., 17 John, m. 19 (p. 148), and Cal. Docs. 
Ireland, vol. i, nos. 742, 1015, 1386. We have already seen 
{supra, p. 121) that Hugh de Lacy obtained the barony of 
Lower Dundalk from Thomas de Verdun. Probably Hugh 
built the first castle of Carlingford. He afterwards granted 
the castle to his daughter Matilda, together with all the 
lands which he had received with her mother in ' Cole et 
Ergalea ' (Cooley and Uriel) on the occasion of Matilda's 
marriage with David, baron of Naas : Gormanston Register, 
f. 191 dors. 

2 For the identification of the castrum de Rath with the 
castle of Dundrum see my paper, Journ. R. S. A. I. 1909, 
pp. 23-9. 


still bear witness, this castle was a formidable 
structure, built on a rock, and consisting of 
a massive circular donjon-keep surrounded by 
stout walls and rock-hewn trenches. Here, if 
anywhere, Hugh de Lacy must have prepared to 
make a stand. But John had collected a large 
fleet of transports. He threw a bridge of boats 
across Carlingford Lough, probably at Narrow- 
water, and sent the main body of his troops 
across the bridge to advance round the moun- 
tains towards the castle of Rath, while he 
himself with the rest went by sea. He landed 
first at Ardglas, where he was on the 12th at Ardgias, 
Jordan de Saukeville's castle, and then he 
immediately turned back to the castle of Rath, 
which appears to have been for the moment the 
objective.^ Probably its defenders, seeing them- ^un- 


selves out-manoeuvred, retreated before retreat July u. 
was cut off. At any rate, on the 14th the castle 
was occupied by John, apparently without 

1 That there was some such manoeuvre appears to follow 
(1) from the statements in the Annals of Inisf alien (see 
Four Masters, sub anno 1209), which after mentioning 
Hugh's retreat says that the king at CarUngford ' made 
a bridge of his ships across the harbour by which he landed 
some of his troops on the other side and proceeded thence 
to Carrickfergus partly by sea and partly by land ' ; (2) from 
the recorded itinerary of the king ; and (3) from general 
topographical considerations. John brought a vast number 
of pontes — I suppose materials for making pontoon bridges 
— with him to Ireland, as many as 155 from York and still 
more from Dorset and Somerset : Pipe Roll, 12 and 13 John. 


resistance, and Hugh de Lacy's supporters con- 
centrated at Carrickfergus. 

On the 12th, while at Ardglas, John made 
a prest to ' Mariadac, King of Limerick '. This 
was Murtough Finn, son of Donnell O'Brien, 
who had apparently come with a contingent 
from Thomond. Jordan de Saukeville appears 
to have been disseised of his lands at Ardglas, 
Hotywood, and other places in Ulster at this 
time, as in 1217 his lands there were restored 
to him.^ A mote on the 'Ward of Ardglas', 
a promontory forming the southern boundary 
of the harbour, probably represents the original 
castle-site, but even at this early period 
the town, as the principal seaport of Lecale, 
must have risen to some importance, and 
a stone castle may have been already built 

At Rath, or Dundrum, John also set his 
carpenters, quarriers, and ditchers to work, 
probably, as at Carlingford, to repair the damage 
done by Hugh de Lacy. The castle was left in 
the custody of Roger Pipard, and was retained 
as a royal castle for seventeen years.^ 

1 Rot. Claus., 1 Hen. Ill (p. 304 b). 

2 A well-preserved castle at Ardglas, known as ' Jordan's 
castle ', is, however, of later date. In 1220-1 Jordan de 
Saukeville obtained respites ' in fortifjdng his land ' : Rot. 
Clans., 4 Hen. Ill (p. 413 b), and 5 Hen. Ill (p. 455). These, 
however, may have referred to other lands of his. 

^ See my paper, as above, p. 24. 


On the 16th John was at Downpatrick, the seat Down- 

• IP 11 pTi patrick, 

of the bishopric, and lormerly the caput oi John juiy i6. 
de Courcy's lordship. But now the objective 
was Carrickfergus. This was Hugh de Lacy's Camck- 
strongest castle, and the remnant of his followers juiy 
were gathered together in it, apparently pre- ~ * 
pared for a siege. John, however, made a great 
concentration of his forces here, both by sea and 
by land, and the castle soon surrendered. A 
large number of knights and gentlemen, feuda- 
tories of the de Lacys, and their retainers, were 
taken prisoners in the castle and deprived for 
the time of their lands. ^ Hugh de Lacy himself, 

^ Upwards of thirty are mentioned by name in the Rolls as 
having been taken prisoners in the castle, and subsequently, 
at different times extending over six years, as being released 
on payment of a fine. Among those connected with Ulster 
may be mentioned William and Luke de Audley, a name 
which survives in Audley Castle on Strangford Lough ; 
Walter de Logan, witness of John de Courcy's charter to 
the church of Down, and one of the magnates of Ireland 
in 1221 ; Robert de Weldebuef, whose land called Edereskel 
lay between Holy wood and BaUyoran (Reeves, Eccl. Tax., 
pp. 359, 361) ; Robert and Thomas Talbot, who had lands 
at Ire we and Brakenberg (Reeves, Eccl. Tax., p. 57) ; and 
Ralph de Rossal (RusseU). Among those connected with 
Meath were Hubert Hose of Galtrim, Lucian de Arquilla, and 
Gilbert de Weston, who had lands in the honour of Nobber; 
John de Feipo, son of Adam de Feipo of Skreen ; Michael, 
son of Adam le Gros, and Walter Sancmesle, both of whom 
were again in rebelhon in 1224. On the other hand, several 
names of those who either at this time or soon afterwards 
were landholders in Ulster, Uriel, or Meath appear among 
the knights who supported John, e. g. Robert and Thomas 


however, at the king's approach, escaped in 
a boat to Scotland, and at the same time Maud 
de Braose and her sons William and Reginald 
also fled. Maud, her son William, and others 
of the family were immediately captured by 
Duncan of Carrick, uncle of Alan of Galloway, 
but Hugh de Lacy and Reginald de Braose 
succeeded in escaping. The king, informed of 
this while still at Carrickfergus, sent John de 
Courcy (seemingly the former lord of Ulster) 
and Godfrey de Craucumbe to convey the 
prisoners to him, which they did.^ 

At first sight it may seem strange that the 
king should have become reconciled with John 
de Courcy, and should bring him on this expedi- 
tion to his former lordship, without intending 
to reinstate him ; but John's ways were not 
as other men's ways, and he probably de- 
rived a malign pleasure, first in using against 
Hugh de Lacy the man whom he had sup- 

le Savage, Robert de Mandeville, Ralph Gernun, Eborard de 
Vernun, Hugh de Bernevall ; besides Nicholas de Verdun 
and Roger Pipard, tenants in capite in Uriel. 

1 Rymer's Foedera, vol. i, pt. i, p. 108. There is just an 
element of doubt as to the identity of this John de Courcy, 
as there was another John de Courcy, son of Roger of 
Chester, who had been one of the hostages of the conqueror 
of Ulster {supra, p. 139, n.), and who early in the next reign 
claimed his father's lands in Ulster : Cal. Docs. Ireland, 
vol. i, no. 833. But for reasons already given {supra, p. 143) 
there can be little real doubt that it was the former lord of 
Ulster who accompanied King John. 


planted, and then in withholding from John 
de Courcy the lordship of which he had been 

As to Maud de Braose, according to John's John's 
own statement, when she was brought before conSed 
him she offered 40,000 marks for life and limb 
of her husband, her family, and herself, her 
husband to quit-claim to John all his lands and 
castles. It is obvious that these preposterous 
conditions must have been imposed by John, 
not with any expectation that they could be 
fulfilled, but in order that their non-fulfilment 
might form a pretext for confiscation and out- 
lawry. Ultimately the terms were agreed to 
and ratified, but default was made in the first 
payment, Maud declaring that she had not 
the money. Thereupon WiUiam de Braose was 
declared an outlaw. So far, with many addi- 
tional details to emphasize his forbearance, John 
gives his account of the matter, and as the 
document is attested by the Earl of Ferrers, 
nephew of William de Braose, and by Adam de 
Port, his brother-in-law, as well as by several 
eminent men, we may accept the facts stated as 
formally correct though misleading. John does 
not tell the sequel, however. William de Braose 
died next year, an exile in France, while his 

1 Before John left Ireland a prest of 20 marks was made 
to John de Courcy, presumably for his services : Rot. de 
Prest., p. 227. 

1226 H R 


wife and eldest son were starved to death in 
prison by order of the king.^ 
The As for the de Lacys, a story is told in some 

and St. late Latin annals to the effect that on being 
expelled from Ireland they fled for refuge to 
the monastery of St. Taurin in Normandy, and 
worked there, unknown, in menial employment 
until at length the abbot discovered who they 
were ; that at the abbot's intercession the king 
restored them to their former rank and lord- 
ships ; and that Walter de Lacy, out of gratitude, 
gave to the abbot's nephew, John Fitz Alured, 
the lordship of Dengyn, and brought monks 
from St. Taurin and gave them farms and the 
cell called Foure.'' Though most of the details 
of this story can be shown to be apocryphal, it is 
not improbable that the de Lacys did actually 
seek shelter and hospitality from the monks 
of St. Taurin at Evreux. It appears, however, 
that it was Hugh de Lacy the elder who granted 
to those monks the churches and tithes of 
Fore, and the mill of St. Fechin there, and a 
wood near the town for their habitation ; ® while 

1 So much seems certain. The story of John's vengeance 
is told with many variants by the chroniclers. See Miss 
Norgate's John Lackland, p. 288, where the statements are 
collected and examined. 

'^ Laud MS. Annals, printed in Chart. St. Mary's, Dublin, 
vol. ii, p. 3n. The story has been reproduced in the Book 
of Howth, p. 121, Grace's Annals, &c. 

^ Cal. Docs. France (Round), vol. i, p. 105. The charter 


Thomas and Walter, sons of Alured, made grants 
of the church of Laracor (the parish in which 
Dengyn, now Dangan, is situated) at dates pre- 
ceding the expulsion of the de Lacys.^ This 
already established connexion may have induced 
the de Lacys to seek shelter with the monks of 
St. Taurin. 

John was at Carrickfergus from the 19th to 
the 28th of July, and we have long lists of the 
knights to whom he made payments, dating 
from the 20th, when we must suppose the castle 
was in his hands. As at Carlingford and Rath, 
he made payments to carpenters and stone- 
workers, apparently for repairs to the castle. 
Indeed these three castles were the principal 
— perhaps the only — regular stone castles in 
the lordship. Carrickfergus is a well-preserved 
example of the keep and bailey plan, situated on 
a rocky headland. It is doubtful whether the 
keep should be ascribed to Hugh de Lacy or to 
John de Courcy, but it is probable that the latter 
had a castle here.^ The gateway and mural 

is by Hugh de Lacy the elder ; with the witnesses compare 
those of the elder Hugh's grant to William le Petit (one 
of whom was Thomas Fitz Alured) : Song of Dermot, p. 310. 
Walter de Lacy further endowed the monks of Fore, but, in 
part at least, before his expulsion. ] 

1 Reg. St. Thomas's, Dublin, p. 42. The name Fitz Alured 
became Fitz Averay, and a Thomas Fitz Averay was lord of 
the manor of Dengyn (now Dangan) in 1300 : ibid., p. 421. 

- From a letter of Reginald, Bishop of Connor, c. 1224, it 
apj)ears that John de Courcy endowed the House of St. Mary 



towers are later. While at Carrickfergus John 
sent a force to seize the castle of Antrim, and 
directed John de Gray to have two galleys built 
there for service on Lough Neagh. He gave 
Carrickfergus Castle to the custody of Geoffrey 
de Serland, and it was retained in the king's 
hand up to 1226.^ Having made provision for 
the custody of his prisoners, and having dis- 
missed his Irish auxiliaries, he now returned 
southwards. i 

Holy- On the 29th John was at Holywood, on the 

July 29. southern shore of Belfast Lough. This place, 
as well as Ardglas, appears to have belonged to 
Jordan de Saukeville,^ and until recently there 
was a mote in the town. He visited ' Balimoran ', 
probably now Ballymorran, a townland in the 
parish of Killinchy, barony of Dufferin, where 
' White's Castle ' stands on an earlier earthwork. 
Probably about the same time he seized the 
castles of Ballymaghan and Dundonald in the 
neighbourhood, as these castles were in the king's 

of Carrickfergus to the use of canons of the Premonstraten- 
sian Order, and conferred on them the church of St. Nicholas 
at Carrickfergus, which he had probably built : Royal 
Letters, Cal. Docs. Ireland, i, no. 1225. From this it seems 
probable that John de Courcy defended the place with 
a castle. 

1 Rot. Pat., 10 Hen. III. Geoffrey de Serland was suc- 
ceeded as constable by WiUiam de Serland, who in 1223 
was appointed Seneschal of Ulster: Rot. Pat., 7 Hen. III. 

2 Rot. Claus., I Hen. Ill (p. 304 b). 


hand in 1221.^ On the 2nd and 3rd of August Do^vB- 
John was again at Downpatrick, and on the 4th Aug. 2-3, 
at the river Bann. The exact spot on the river was 
probably at the place now called Hilltown, in the 
parish of Clonduff, where there is a mote. It lies 
on the direct route from Downpatrick to Narrow 
Water, where John probably crossed the inlet on 
his wav back to Carlinsfford, which he reached Cariing- 

^ ^ ford, 

on the 5th. Here he sent an officer to the Isle Aug 5. 
of Man 'to guard the king's supplies there', but, 
according to unofficial accounts, the island was 
plundered by John's men at this time.^ 

On the 8th John was at Drogheda, where the Diog- 


castle on ' the Millmount ' guarding the bridge was Aug. 8. 
taken into his hand and retained permanently. 
On the 9th he went on to Duleek, on the 10th 
to Kells, and on the 1 1th to Fore, where he took 
Walter de Lacy's castle into his hand.^ On 

1 Called ' Dundunnelan and Balimichgan ' : Rot. Pat., 
6 Hen. III. 

2 In the Aimals of Loch Ce it is stated that, after taking 
Carrie kfergus, John sent a fleet of his people to the Isle of 
Man and ' they plundered it and killed its people '. So 
WilHam of Newburgh,vol. ii, p. 511, ' insulam Man destruxit.' 
In May 1212 John granted to Reginald, King of Man, 
a knight's fee near Carhngford and 100 seams of wheat to 
be received yearly at Drogheda, and the two kings recipro- 
cally bound themselves to punish acts of violence of their 
subjects on each other's territory : Rot. Chart., 14 John, 
p. 186 b ; Rot. Pat., 14 John, p. 92 b. 

^ Fore (Irish, FahJiar, latinized Favoria) was restored 
to Walter de Lacy in 1215 : Rot. Pat., 17 John, p. 148 b. 


the 12th he reached Granard, the mote-castle of 
Richard de Tuit/ on the north-western frontier 

Ratiiw-ire, of the lordship of Meath. He now turned south, 

"^ ' and was at Rathwire on the 14th. It belonged 

to Robert de Lacy. The remains show that it 

was a mote and bailey castle, and that a stone 

castle was afterwards built in the bailey. 

John and At Rathwirc Cathal Crovderg came to meet 


Crovderg. John, according to arrangement, but failed to 
satisfy him. The relations between Cathal and 
John at this time are somewhat obscure. Cathal, 
as we have seen, owed his crown to the support 
given to him by William de Burgh and the 
English king — a support which was not given 
for nothing. When William de Burgh turned 
against Cathal after the massacre of his men 
in 1203, John, through Meiler Fitz Henry, forced 
William to give way, and continued to support 
Cathal, retaining in his hand, however, the rights 
acquired by William in Connaught. In March 
1204 the king sent Meiler and the Archdeacon 
of Stafford (Henri de Londres, the future Arch- 
bishop of Dublin), along with Walter de Lacy to 
arrange matters with Cathal.^ W^e have records 
of two proposals made to regulate Cathal's 

1 Apud Grenard, called 'castrum Eicardi de Thuit ' : Rot. 
de Prest., 12 John, p. 248. It was restored to Walter de 
Lacy along with other castles in 1215, but Richard de Tuit 
was killed in 1211, and the castle may in consequence have 
been in the king's hand. 

2 Liberate, 5 John, p. 83. 


position. The first was communicated by Meiler 
in August 1204. By it Cathal was to quit-claim 
two-thirds of Connaught to the king and retain 
the remaining third as an estate of inheri- 
tance at a rent of 100 marks.^ John's rapacity 
probably caused the negotiations to fail. In 
December 1205 a new proposal was presented 
by an Irishman ^ on Cathal's behalf, namely 
that he should hold in fee of the king a third of 
Connaught as a barony at 100 marks a year, and 
for the remaining two-thirds he should render 
a tribute of 300 marks. He was to grant to the 
king two cant reds with their villeins to farm or 
do his pleasure therein.^ A charter appears to 
have been granted on some such terms, and is 
referred to in a later document.* In 1207 the 
king made grants of lands in Connaught to John 
Marshal and Gilbert de Angulo.® These lands 
appear to have been (partly at any rate) comprised 
in the baronies of Athlone and Longford, in the 
counties of Roscommon and Galway respectively. 

1 Rot. Claus., 6 John, p. 6 b, Cal. no. 222 ; Rymer's 
Foedera, vol. i, pt. i, p. 91. 

2 The Irishman's name is printed Deremunt. It is 
probable that the individual was Dermot Mac Dermot, 
King of Moylurg, who accompanied Cathal to Rath\\dre and 
was seized as a hostage. 

3 Rot. Claus., 7 John, p. 62, Cal. no. 279. 

4 Ibid., 8 John, p. 78 b, Cal. no. 311, confirming Cathal's 
grant of Maenmagh to Gilbert de Angulo. 

5 Ibid., 9 John, pp. 173, 173 b. 


When John came to Ireland, Cathal Crovderg 
accompanied him with a force to Carrickfergus. 
On their return from the north it was arranged 
that Cathal was to meet John in a fortnight and 
bring his son Aedh with him as a hostage, and 
that John would grant him a charter, framed 
apparently so as to include Aedh, for the third 
part of Connaught. 0' Conor, on reaching home, 
however, adopted the advice of his wife not to 
take his son to the king, 'although,' says the 
annalist, 'this was the worst counsel.' Accord- 
ingly, when Cathal came to Rathwire without 
his son, John was evidently enraged, and seized 
four important members of 0' Conor's retinue, 
and took them with him as hostages.^ Later in 
the year, as we shall see, O' Conor was forced to 
come to terms with John de Gray, the justiciar, 
and to give his son Turlough as a hostage. 
Dublin, On the 18th of August John was back at 

i8"-24. Dublin. Here he stayed for six days before his 
departure, and we have a long list of his knights 

1 Ann. Loch Ce, 1210. The men seized as hostages were 
Dermot Mac Dermot, King of Magh Luirg, Conor O'Hara, 
King of Luighne, Find O'Carmacan and Toirberd, officers 
of O'Conor's household They were released next year 
when Cathal's son was sent. John stopped at Castellum 
Bret on the 17th. Its position is uncertain. Milo le Bret 
had lands near Dublin for which an exchange was ordered 
to be given him in 1207 : C. D. I., vol. i, nos. 360, 361. His 
principal seat seems to have been at Mainclare, said to be 
Moyclare in Meath: Chart. St. Mary's, Dublin, vol. i, 128-9. 




to whom he made payments. On the 24th he 
was at a mead near Dubhn, perhaps at Ringsend Fish- 
(if this was the place of his embarkation), and fjfg. 20 
on the 26th he was at Fishguard. 

When John was in Dubhn after the surrender King 
of Carrickfergus, he charged the Earl Marshal 
with having sheltered William de Braose, his ™hai 
mortal enemy, and having aided his escape. 
The earl made much the same answer as he had 
previously made to the justiciar, adding that 
if any one except the king accused him he was 
ready to defend himself according to the judge- 
ment of the court. As had happened once 
before, no one accepted the challenge. The king 
then demanded hostages, and named Geoffrey 
Fitz Robert, Jordan de Sauqueville, Thomas de 
Sanford, John d'Erlee, and Walter Purcell, and 
required that the castle of Dunamase should be 
delivered up to him. Only the two last named 
were present. These readily consented to give 
themselves up as hostages, and the earl delivered 
them and his castle to the king. John was 
still unsatisfied, and insisted on getting security 
from all the earl's barons who were present 
for the complete fulfilment of his demand. All 
agreed except David de la Roche, who was 
regarded with contempt by the rest.^ When 
John returned to England he bailed out his 
hostages in various places there. Next year the 
1 Histoire, 11. 14283-446. 


Marshal fought for the king against Llewelyn 
in Wales, and then the king restored to him his 
hostages, but to Geoffrey Fitz Robert death came 
before liberty.^ The earl returned to Ireland and 
remained there until the beginning of the year 
1213, when he was again summoned to England 
in view of the threatened invasion of England by 
Philip Augustus. Then at last the king handed 
over the earl's two sons, one to John d'Erlee 
and one to Thomas de Sanford.^ 
Whole- John was about nine weeks in Ireland. During 

fisSitk>ns. this time he had crushed William de Braose, 
expelled the de Lacys, and confiscated their 
lands. Even from Earl William Marshal he had 
exacted a number of hostages and taken the 
castle of Dunamase. In the course of his 
progress he had seized the principal castles of 
the lordships of Meath and Ulster, including 
the following : in Meath, Trim, Drogheda, Rat- 
oath, Nobber, Fore, Granard, Loughsewdy, and 
Clonard ; and in Ulster, Carrickfergus, Antrim, 
Carlingford, Dundrum, and others.^ Those in 

1 Histoire, 11. 14447-86. This was the Welsh war of 
1211 : Rog. de Wend., vol. ii, p. 58. 

2 Ibid., 11. 14487-578, and cf. Rot. Claus., 14 John, 
p. 132 b. 

3 This, the main result of John's progress in Ireland, has 
not, I think, been dul}^ noticed. Even so perspicacious a 
writerasDr. G. T. Stokes describes John as merely ' personally 
inspecting the fortresses from Carrickfergus in the north . . . 
to Waterford in the south' : Anglo-Norman Church, p. 242. 


Meath, except Ratoath and Nobber (which had 
belonged to Hugh de Lacy) were restored to 
Walter de Lacy for a fine of 4,000 marks in 1215, 
while the castles of Ulster were not restored to 
Hugh de Lacy until after 1226. Of the de Lacy 
feoffees John had taken a large number prisoners 
at the surrender of Carrickfergus, and these he 
committed to the custody of various persons in 
England. It would seem that by far the major 
part of the lands of the barons of Meath and of 
Ulster were confiscated or held to ransom, and 
in several cases new grants were made to those 
of John's adherents whom he wished to reward. 
Thus John immediately granted to Duncan, son 
of Gilbert, lord of Carrick, who had captured 
Maud de Braose and her son, ' the town of 
Wulfrichford (the Ulfreksfiordr of the Northmen, 
now Larne), and all the lands which Roger de 
Preston and Henry Clemens held near Wulfrich- 
ford ' and as far as Glenarm.^ Other grantees 
had afterwards to give up for an exchange the 
lands granted to them when the former owners 
were restored.^ 

1 Cal. Cane. Hib., vol. ii, p. 354, and see Rot. Claus., 
3 Hen. Ill, p. 402 b, where the charter is stated to have been 

2 Thus Sir William le Pugneor, ' the king's knight,' had 
to give up the land of William de Cusac in Ulster when 
the latter was reinstated : Rot. Pat., 18 John, p. 191 b ; 
and so of Godfrey de Serland, constable of Carrickfergus : 
Rot. Claus., 18 John, p. 271. 


Irish John was not ignored on this visit by the Irish 

assist princes, as he had been on his visit twenty-five 
John. years before. Indeed, the difference in their 
attitude is the measure of the growth of Anglo- 
Norman influence during the interval. At his 
summons the kings of Limerick or Thomond, 
Connaught, and Tirowen all appear to have led 
contingents to Carrickfergus. Aedh O'Neill was 
ready enough to assist in expelling his enemy 
Hugh de Lacy, but he managed to return home 
without giving hostages to John.^ Cathal Crov- 
derg's position was less independent, and, as 
we have seen, he was forced to give hostages. 
Murtough O'Brien ^ and his brother Donough 
were entirely dependent on English support. 
According to Roger de Wendover, more than 
twenty kinglets came to meet John in Dublin, 
and these, stricken with fear, did him homage 
and fealty. A few, however, who dwelt in inac- 
cessible places scorned to come to the king,* and 
the king, it may be added, in the spirit in which 
he had lost Normandy, seems to have scorned 
to subdue them. 

After this expedition, John was in a very 

^ Four Masters, sub anno 1209. 

2 A prest of 10 marks was given to Mariadae, King of 
Limerick, at Ardglas : Rot. de Prest., p. 196. Indeed 
the Irish contingents must have been considerable : there 
was a prest of £100 to the Bishop of Norwich for Irish 
soldiers he had retained, ibid., p. 178 ; and again £40, 
ibid., p. 188. ^ Rog. of Wendover, vol. ii, p. 56. 


literal sense dominus Hiherniae, meaning by Results 
Hibernia the parts occupied by the English, expedi- 
The lordships of both Ulster and Meath, with *^°"- 
their castles, were in his hand. Even the fiefs 
of most of the subordinate barons had been 
confiscated, only to be redeemed on payment of 
fines, and many of the owners were his prisoners. 
The settled parts of the kingdoms of Limerick 
and of Cork had been dealt with at one time or 
another almost at his will, and the principal 
tenants there held directly of him. The counties 
of Dublin (including most of Wicklow) and 
Waterford were from the first crown-lands. No 
great fief remained in the hands of his barons 
except the lordship of Leinster. This indeed he 
had endeavoured to curtail, and had it been in 
the hands of any one less strong, less patient, 
less upright, and less unswervingly loyal to the 
throne than William Marshal, he would assuredly 
have found some excuse for confiscating it also. 
Even of the Irish kinglets there were none except 
the chieftains of Irish Ulster and Irish Uriel that 
were not more or less dependent on his favour. 
From the greater part of these vast territories 
he enforced not only the feudal dues recognized 
as of right belonging to the immediate lord, but 
also in many cases those increases and arbitrary 
exactions which in a short time banded the 
barons of England together to wring from him 
the Great Charter. 


Had John really established the domination of 
the Crown over 'the five-fifths of Ireland', Celtic 
and Norman, and left behind him an organization 
and a government capable of maintaining peace, 
much might be said for this curbing and crushing 
of the Irish barons. But he personally made no 
attempt to do anything of the kind. The net 
result of his personal interference in Ireland 
would seem to have been to disturb and weaken 
the settlement which had already been effected, 
and to divert a considerable portion of the issues 
and profits of the land into his own coffers. 
Joiin But John is credited with introducing English 

with ad- laws iuto Ireland, organizing the administration 
Uve^^^'^^ of justice, parcelling out the parts of Ireland 
reforms, subject to his jurisdiction into counties, and 
appointing sheriffs to execute the judgements of 
the courts. Let us examine how far this was 
so. The principal authority on the subject is an 
English chronicler whose cursory notice of John's 
visit to Ireland certainly contains one misstate- 
ment of fact. He says that John ' established 
there the laws and customs of England, ap- 
pointing sheriffs and other officers to administer 
justice to the people of that kingdom according 
to English laws.'^ This statement, as it stands, 
is probably not incorrect. It is, however, vague 
and perhaps misleading. On the one hand, it 
must not be inferred that English laws and 
1 Rog. of Wendover, vol. ii, p. 56. 


customs were introduced into Ireland for the first 
time in 1210; and on the other, the statement 
as to sheriffs and other officers is no authority 
for the definite assertion, made first apparently 
by Hanmer at the close of the sixteenth century,^ 
then by Sir John Da vies in 1608,^ and since 
blindly repeated by a host of wTiters, that John 
' made twelve shires in Leinster and Munster, 
namely Dublin, Kildare, Meath, Uriel, Carlow, 
Kilkenny, Wexford, Waterford, Cork, Limerick, 
Kerry, and Tipperary '. 

Whether by a formal ordinance to that effect English 

• T ■ Tx IT 11 '^^ intro- 

or by mere implication, Henry had undoubt- ducedby 
edly introduced English laws and customs into ^^^ 
Ireland, so far at least as the new settlers, who 
were alone prepared to accept them, were con- 
cerned. His grants of the lordships of Leinster 
and Meath to be held on feudal conditions would 
alone show that English law and custom were 
to rule, and it seems unnecessary to labour the 
point ;^ but, except in the court of the justi- 
ciar and as regards the lands retained by the 
Crown, the administration of law would seem 
to have been left to the lords of the liberties 

1 Hanmer's Chronicle, first ed., p. 188. Hanmer (ob. 1604) 
was clearly only amplifying in his usual way Roger de Wen- 
dover's statement. 

2 Sir John Davies's Discovery (ed. 1787), p. 93 ; first 
published 1612. ^ See Lynch's Institutions, c. i. 


John's The dominating note of John's poUcy in Ireland 

crease tiie was the increase of the power of the Crown and 
Qi'^^l the weakening of that of the lords of the great 
Crown. liberties. In 1204 he granted authority to the 
justiciar that ' his writs should run throughout 
the king's entire land and dominion of Ireland ', 
namely the writs of Right, of Mort d' Ancestor, 
of Novel Disseisin, of Fugitives and Villeins, 
and for Making Bounds ; ^ and in 1207, at the 
time of the dissensions between Meiler and the 
barons, he forbade his subjects to answer in any 
court respecting their free tenements or on any 
plea of the Crown, save only before the king or 
his justiciar, or before the justices whom they 
should send for the upholding of the law.^ 
These ordinances appear to have been directed 
against the courts of the liberties, which had 
apparently assumed a co-ordinate jurisdiction 
with the justiciar's court. When in 1208 John 
granted confirmation charters to William the 
Marshal and Hugh de Lacy, he introduced, as we 
have seen, some express exceptions and reserva- 
tions not contained in the previous charters, 
and provided for appeals in certain cases to 
the king's court. 

It seems that when John came to Ireland in 

1 Rot. Pat., 6 John, p. 47 b. 

2 Rot. Pat., 9 John, p. 76 b ; cf. the king's reprimand 
of the barons of Leinster and Meath for attempting to create 
a new assize . Rot. Pat., 8 John, p. 72. 


1210 he took some formal steps to enjoin He took 
and secure the observance of EngUsh laws and It^l to 
customs. There are several allusions to this in En^Jjgf^ 
the rolls of Henry III. Thus in 1228 the king '^w, 

,,.,..._. especially 

commanaed the justiciar Richard de Burgh to proce- 
read before a specially convened assemblage ' the ^^^^' 
charter of the lord King John, our father, to 
which his seal was appended, which he caused 
to be made and to be sworn to by the magnates 
of Ireland concerning the observance of the 
laws and customs of England in Ireland ', and 
to enjoin again obedience to those laws and 
customs ; ^ and in the year 1233, in another 
ordinance, concerning pleas of lay fee and 
advowsons of churches, the king refers to ' the 
laws and customs of the realm of England which 
the lord King John our father of happy memory, 
with the common consent of all men of Ireland, 
ordained to be kept in that land.' ^ Here again 
it would seem that, though no doubt the whole 
common law of England was included by the 
terms of this ordinance, the main object was 
to settle the jurisdiction and procedure of the 
various courts. 

1 Rot. Claus, 12 Hen. Ill, m. 8 ; Early Statutes (Bern), 
p. 23. 

2 Rot. Pat., 18 Hen. III. m. 17 ; Early Statutes, p. 24. 
By ' all men of Ireland ' is of course meant the Norman or 
English magnates. To have imposed English laws on the 
Celtic chieftains and their tribesmen would have been an 
utterly impossible task. 

1226 II S 


Itinerant The appointment of justices in eyre probably 
dates from about this time. Itinerant justices 
are alluded to in John's charter to the city 
of Waterford in 1215,^ and in an ordinance of 
Henry III certain assizes are directed to be 
taken ' in the same form and plan and before the 
same judges as assizes were taken from the time 
when King John established English laws and 
customs in Ireland '.^ But the jurisdiction of 
these justices, except as regards pleas of the 
Crown, was limited to the settled districts out- 
side the great liberties, and was probably only 
gradually extended over even this restricted 
area, and proceeded pari passu with the forma- 
tion of counties in the strict sense of sheriffdoms. 
As long as a liberty existed ordinary legal 
processes therein were executed by the officers 
of the lord of the liberty, and not by a sheriff 
appointed by the Crown. Indeed, the touch- 
stone of a true liberty was that in it the king's 
writs were addressed to the lord of the liberty 
or to his seneschal, and not to the king's 

* Chartae Priv. et Immun., p. 13, where the charter is 
wrongly dated the 7th instead of the 17th John ; of. Cal. 
Docs. Ireland, vol. i, no. 580, and the witnesses to John's 
Dublin charter of 1215 and to his grant to Thomas Fitz 
Anthon}^, July 3 There appear to have been justices in 
eyre in Ulster in 1218 : Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, no. 833. 

2 Rot. Claus., 10 Hen. Ill, m. 2, Up to 1221 only a single 
justice went on circuit : Rot. Claus., 5 Hen. Ill, p. 451. 


The assertion that John divided Leinster and Forma- 
Munster into twelve counties in the sense of counties 
administrative units subject to sheriffs, is demon- !;,Sl*!o*' 
strably incorrect. Sheriffs may have been ap- 
pointed by the Crown or by the justiciar for the 
districts retained in the king's hand from the 
first, but there is no clear evidence of this until 
after John's visit. Soon after this we find 
Geoffrey Luterel, who was one of John's officers 
on his Irish expedition, described as vicecomes 
Dubliniensis,^ and we read of the counties 
(comitatus) of Waterford and of Cork or Desmond, 
which, however, were given to the custody of 
Thomas Fitz Anthony, who no doubt appointed 
his own legal officers. Uriel and the forfeited 
liberty of Ulster are called bailiwicks in 1215, 
when they were in the custody of Roger Pipard 
as seneschal.^ Meath, until restored to Walter 
de Lacy in 1215, may have been similarly treated. 
The honour of Limerick does not appear to 
have been revived, though the castle and city of 
Limerick were granted to the custody of Reginald 
de Braose, son of William de Braose, by Henry III 
in his first year at ' the old farm ', and the 
lands of his father were restored to him. When 
Limerick was first treated as a county under the 
, jurisdiction of a sheriff does not appear, but in 
the Pipe Roll of the 19th year of Henry III 

1 Chart. St. Mary's, Dublin, vol. i, p. 249 ; Reg. St. 
Thomas's, p. 17. 2 Rot. Pat., 17 John, p. 148. 



(1235) ^ we have the accounts of sheriffs for the 
counties of Dublin, Munster (or Cork), Limerick, 
Uriel, Waterford, and Kerry. In 1261 there 
were in addition sheriffs for the counties of 
Tipperary and Connaught,^ from which last- 
named was afterwards distinguished the county 
of Roscommon. So the list remained until the 
year 1297, when the first council of the magnates 
of Ireland which deserves the name of a parHa- 
ment assembled. The writs summoning this 
parliament, called Wogan's first parliament, were 
addressed to the sheriffs of Dublin, Louth, 
Kildare, Waterford, Tipperary, Cork, Limerick, 
Kerry, Connaught, and Roscommon, and to the 
seneschals of the liberties of Meath, Wexford, 
Carlo w, Kilkenny, and Ulster.^ 

It would be out of place here to pursue this 
inquiry further. Enough has been said to show 
that the formation of counties (in the sense 
of administrative units where pleas were heard 
before itinerant justices and legal processes were 
executed by a sheriff appointed by the central 
government) was a very gradual process, and 

^ 35th Rep. Dep. Keeper Ireland, pp. 34-7. 

2 Ibid., pp. 40, 44. 

^ Early Statutes of Ireland (Berry), p. 195. The text is 
given in Irish Arch. Soc. Misc., p. 15. Kildare here appears 
for the first time as a sheriffdom. It had been recently 
surrendered to the king, so that the liberty had merged in 
the Crown : Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. iv, no. 365. By this 
parliament Kildare was constituted a separate county. 


did not extend to the liberties included in the 
' twelve counties ' mentioned for many genera- 
tions. A beginning, however, was probably 
made about the time of King John's visit, but 
for this and other administrative improvements, 
as well as for an improved coinage, credit should 
probably be given not directly to John, but to 
his minister, John de Gray, whom he left behind 
him as justiciar. The appointment to the chief 
office in Ireland of a cultivated English eccle- 
siastic, trained in affairs, and with a practical 
knowledge of legal and administrative machinery, 
was the best thing John did for Ireland at this 




When King John departed from Ireland he 'The 

. Foreign 

left behind him his faithful minister, John Bishop.' 
de Gray, Bishop of Norwich, as justiciar.^ By 
the Irish annalists he is usually designated ' the 
Foreign Bishop '. The epithet, whether so in- 
tended or not, may serve to recall the facts 
that he was the first episcopal viceroy and, with 
one or two unimportant exceptions, the first 
chief governor who had not already thrown in 
his fortunes with Ireland and was not a great 
Irish landholder. Meiler Fitz Henry was a brave Mejler 


soldier and an able commander, and one well as a 
adapted to the rough-and-tumble work of the 
' first conquest ', but he had not developed the 
qualities of a statesman, and possessed neither 
the prudence, the tact, nor the authority requisite 
to guide and control the barons of Ireland. In 

^ The Four Masters in recording the bishop's appointment 
under the year 1208 (which may be right) add : ' and the 
Enghsh were excommunicated by the successor of St. Peter 
for sending the bishop to carry on war in Ireland ' — a novel 
reading of papal motives in proclaiming the interdict ! 


the course of his ten years' tenure of office he had 
fallen foul of, and even come into armed collision 
with, William de Burgh, William de Braose, 
Walter and Hugh de Lacy, Geoffrey de Marisco, 
and William Marshal. He had not even the 
territorial status to enable him, apart from his 
office, to take his place among the greater barons. 
He held lands about Dunamase in the lordship of 
Leinster and about Ardnurcher in the lordship 
of Meath, but he was tenant in capite only of 
some distant and unprofitable lands in the west 
of Kerry. Nor, so far as we can judge, was he 
always justified in his opposition to the great 
barons. It may indeed be said that he was 
always loyal to the Crown, and was at worst only 
the tool of a capricious and tyrannical master ; 
but there is reason to think that in some 
cases, at any rate, he was not merely a willing 
tool, but that in the counsel he gave to his 
sovereign he aimed rather at advancing his 
own interests than at promoting the general 

The new justiciar, whatever his imperfections 
as an ecclesiastic may have been, was a trained 
statesman and man of affairs, and something of 
a military strategist besides. He regarded the 
colony as a whole, set about strengthening the 
weak parts in its defence, and by diplomacy 
backed by military measures endeavoured to win 
the submission of those Irish chieftains who still 


retained more or less of their independence. He 
at once saw the strategic importance of Athlone. Athione 
Whoever held the passage over the Shannon here ^f con- 
held the gate between Connaught and Meath. "^"g^^*- 
This indeed had long been perceived by the 
O'Conors. As long ago as 1129 they had erected 
a fort of some sort here, and had again and again, 
in 1120 and subsequent years, thrown wicker- 
bridges across the river in order that, as one Irish 
annalist explains, ' they might at their pleasure 
have access to take the spoils of West meath '. 
As often as built, however, the bridges at the 
first opportunity had been destroyed by the 
O'MelaghHns of Meath, whose land was threat- 
ened thereby.^ 

1 Here are the notices in the annals of the Four Masters 
of the bridge of Athlone, which has been strangely described 
as ' a work of much merit and utility in those days ' : — 
1120 : Bridge built by Turlough O'Conor, after making 
' a false peace ' with Murrough O'MelaghHn. 1 125 : Bridge 
destroyed by the men of Meath. 1129 : Bridge and castle 
built by Turlough. 1133: Bridge and castle destroyed 
by O'Melaghlin and O'Rourke. 1140: A wicker-bridge 
made by Turlough, and ' he devastated the west of 
Meath '. 1153 : The wicker-bridge destroyed by Melaghlin 
O'MelaghHn and its fortress (daingen) demolished. 1155 : 
A wicker-bridge was made by Turlough '-for the purpose 
of making incursions into Meath '. It Avas destroyed in the 
same year, and its fortress {longport) burned by Donough 
O'Melaghlin. 1159 : A wicker-bridge made by Rory 
O'Conor ' for the purpose of making incursions into Meath ', 
The forces of Meath went to prevent the erection of the 
bridge, and a battle was fought at Athlone. 


Athlone had been occupied by the EngUsh 
before 1199, when, we are told, the bawn there 
was burned by Cathal Crovderg ; ^ and it seems 
probable that the mound of earth, to this day 
contained by the curtain walls of the castle, 
represents the mote thrown up in connexion with 
this bawn. Possibly the original wooden tower 
and wooden defences were no longer in existence 
in 1210. At any rate, immediately after the 
king's departure John de Gray commenced to 
build a bridge — no doubt a wooden bridge — and 
A castle a strong castle at Athlone." We are expressly 
buUt^"^ told by one Irish annalist ^ that the castle was 
there. of stouc, from whicli we may infer that such 
a castle was even then a novelty, at least in this 
neighbourhood. It included ' a stone tower ' or 
keep, built, no doubt, on the summit of the 
mote where its successor stands to-day. This 
tower, perhaps owing to the looseness of the 
artificial foundation, fell next year^ and in its 
fall killed Richard de Tuit and eight Englishmen 
besides. He was the Richard de Tuit at whose 
castle of Granard King John had stopped on 

1 Ann. Loch Ce, 1199, where the hodhun Atha, ' the ba^vn 
of the ford,' seems clearly to refer to Athlone. It was 
probably by way of reply to this attack that the cantred 
in Connaught known as Tir Fhiachrach bhfeadha, or the 
Faes of Athlone, was granted in the next year to Geoffrey 
de Costentin : Rot. Chart., 2 John, p. 79 b. 

2 Ann. Loch Ce, 1210. 

•^ Ann. Clonmacnois : caislen cloiche — tor cloiche. 


August 12, 1210, and was probably the same 
Richard de Tuit to whom the elder Hugh de 
Lacy had granted 'a rich feoffment'. According 
to some of the Irish annals he was left in Ireland 
as Lord Chief Justice in 1211, when John de Gray 
and the magnates of Ireland were summoned by 
the king to attend the expedition undertaken 
in that year against Llewelyn of Wales. This 
statement is probably correct, and Richard de 
Tuit was probably concerned with the castle of 
Athlone in his capacity as deputy at the time 
of his tragic death. ^ 

^ See Ann. Clonmacnois and Four Masters, 1210 (the 
true date was 1211 : Ann. Loch Ce ; Laud MS. Ann., Chart. 
St. Mary's Abbey, Dublin). O'Donovan, on quite insuffi- 
cient grounds, questions the statement that Richard de Tuit 
was justiciar at the time, but though the date is wrong and 
the entry in the Four Masters confused, it is pretty clear 
that John de Gray and the magnates were summoned for 
the campaign of 1211 (described by Rog. de Wendover, 
vol. ii, p. 58), as they certainly were for the abortive one of 
1212 (Rot. Claus., 16 John, p. 131 b). In the Histoire de 
Guillaume le Marechal it is expressly stated (11. 14447-86) 
that Wilham Marshal fought for the king against Llewelyn 
in the year after John's Irish expedition. From the 
Pipe Roll, 13 John, it appears that the Bishop of Nor\vich 
brought the king's money from Ireland in that year, and 
Roger de Wendover includes him among the king's con- 
siliarii iniquissimi at the time (Aug. 30, 1211) when Pandulf 
the papal legate absolved John's subjects from their allegi- 
ance. During the absence from Ireland of the Bishop of 
Norwich somebody must have been appointed justiciar or 
deputy in his room, and there is no reason to doubt that 
this was Richard de Tuit. 


The castle of Athlone was soon rebuilt, and 
perhaps the mote was this time revetted with 
masonry, similarly as we see it to-day, so that the 
disaster should not recur. The castle has been 
altered from time to time to suit later military 
requirements. It was tremendously shattered 
by Ginckell in 1691, and since restored. Yet it 
remains to-day in essentials much as we may 
suppose it to have been left by John de Gray : 
a great platform of earth, raised some twenty- 
five feet above the river-bank, held in position 
by strong retaining walls, and bearing on top 
a massive decagonal donjon-tower. The recon- 
structed castle was given to the custody of 
Geoffrey de Costentin, to whom John had pre- 
viously given lands in the neighbouring district 
on the Roscommon side, and except for a com- 
paratively brief period in the fifteenth century, 
when the Crown lost possession of it, it has 
always remained a royal castle.^ 
Peace of While John de Gray was building this castle 
mo?"^' ^^^ bridge at Athlone in 1210, an expedition, 
probably authorized by the king, was led into 
Connaught by Geoffrey de Marisco, Thomas 
Fitz Maurice, and the English of Munster, sup- 
ported as usual by Donough Cairbrech O'Brien 
and his men. Aedh, one of the sons of Rory 
0'Conor,was brought with them, in case it should 

^ See my paper, ' Athlone : its early history,' Journ. 
R. S. A. I. 1907, pp. 257-76. 


be necessary to play off a rival claimant to the 
throne. Cathal, however, showed no fight, and 
on his agreeing to meet the justiciar all depreda- 
tions were stayed. At Athlone peace was con- 
cluded between the justiciar and Cathal. The 
latter was now prepared to satisfy King John's 
demands. The obligation to pay rent or tribute 
was again acknowledged, and Cathal gave his 
son Turlough and the son of another noble as 

The terms of the Peace of Athlone were ap- 
parently more favourable to Cathal than the 
arrangement of 1205. They were finally em- 
bodied in the charter of 1215, by which John Charter 
granted and confirmed to Cathal all the land of naught, 
Connaught to hold of the king in fee during good ^^^^' 
service, and so that the King of Connaught 
should not be disseised of his land without 
judgement of the king's court, rendering for ever 
to the king 300 marks, and saving to the king 
the castle of Athlone.^ The grant, however, 

1 Ann. Clonmacnois, 1208 or 1209 (recte 1210) ; Ann. 
Loch Ce, 1210. Next year (1211) the four hostages forcibly 
taken by John at Rath wire were restored (ibid. 1211). 
Cathal kept Christmas probably in 1212 with the deputy 
in Dublin (Ann. Clonmacnois, 1211). Cathal's son, Tur- 
lough, died in restraint with the Englishmen (ibid. 1213). 

2 Rot. Chart., 17 John, p. 219. Cathal was to pay 
5,000 marks for this charter; Rot. Claus., 17 John, p. 228 b. 
At the same time an alternative charter was prepared 
granting to Richard de Burgh all the land of Connaught 
which William his father held of the king . Rot. Chart., 


was personal to Cathal, and he was liable to be 
disseised by judgement of the king's court in 
default of good service. In pursuance of this 
treaty two cantreds in the neighbourhood of 
Roscommon, which had been granted under the 
former arrangement to John Marshal and Philip 
de Angulo respectively, appear to have been re- 
stored to Cathal and the feoffees compensated.^ 
The Peace of Athlone seems to have been on 
the whole loyally observed on both sides until 
after Cathal's death in 1224. Cathal remained 
a faithful vassal of the king, sending petitions 
to him directly or through the English justiciar, ) 
and in common with other tenants in capite 
receiving the king's mandates.^ Though he was 
attacked more than once by the sons of Rory, 
these aspirants to the throne of Connaught 

17 John, m. 3 (p. 218 b). This charter, we must suppose, 
was to be dehvered only if Cathal failed to take up the other, 
and in the events which happened became for the time 
a dead letter. It is, however; an example of John's double- 

1 Rot. Claus., 17 John, p. 223, Cal. no. 630, Avhere ' the 
cantred of Roscoman ' appears to be equivalent to Moy Ai, 
and Rot. Pat., 17 John, p. 152, Cal. no. 537 where ' Kilman ' 
is probably now represented by the parish of Kilmeane, 
where we may perhaps see a trace of Anglo-Norman tenure 
in the demesne of Mote Park ; cf . the grant to John Marshal 
in 1207 (Rot. Chart., 9 John, p. 173 b) ' of the cantred in 
which the vill of Kylmien is situated '. 

2 Royal, &c., Letters, Hen. Ill (Shirley), vol. i, pp. 165, 
183, 223 ; Rot. Claus., 3 Hen. Ill, p. 390 b, and 5 Hen. Ill, 
p. 476 b. 


received no assistance from the English. Once 
indeed in 1221 Walter de Lacy made an attempt 
to build a castle at Athleague, a ford over the 
Shannon to the north of Lough Ree, but he was 
at once compelled by Cathal to desist ; ^ and 
once in 1219 Richard de Burgh, who had here- 
ditary claims to parts of Connaught, privately 
sought to obtain a charter curtailing Cathal's 
rights,^ but this proposal was for the time 
rejected, and to the end Cathal remained King 
of Connaught, owing tribute to, and receiving 
protection from, the English Crown. 

The ultimate aim of John de Gray's policy. Policy 
like that of Henry VIII more than three centuries ae Gray. 
later, seems to have been to convert the Irish 
kings who were still independent into feudal 
barons holding their several tribe-lands directly 
from the English Crown. No attempt was made 
to impose feudal law on the tribesmen, and 
though the charter to Cathal was in form similar 
to the grant of a liberty to an English baron, 
reserving the pleas of the Crown, it is probable 
that no attempt was made to hold these pleas or 
interfere in any way as long as Cathal ' served 
the king well'. A rent of 300 marks was ex- 
acted and an occasional aid demanded, as from 
the English barons. In return letters of protec- 
tion were granted, and, as we have said, during 

1 Ann. Loch Ce, 1221. 

- Rot. Glaus., 3 Hen. Ill, p. 401, Cal. no. 900. 


CathaFs lifetime the treaty seems to have worked 
well. It was certainly an improvement on the 
Treaty of Windsor, which left the other Irish 
kings subordinate to the King of Connaught, 
and tributary, through him, to the English 
Crown. This, as we have seen, was from the 
first unworkable. But even if John de Gray 
had succeeded in making similar arrangements 
with the northern chieftains, we may well doubt 
whether the aim of the policy could have been 
effected. On the one hand there was the constant 
pressure of English barons seeking more land and 
offering better security to the Crown for rents and 
services, and on the other there was a constant 
temptation, if not to the actual chiefs, at least to 
some aspirant to the throne, to gain popularity 
and power by refusing to pay tribute, throwing 
off the slight restraints imposed by the treaty, 
and carrying out some successful raid against the 
foreigners. Above all, the effect of granting the 
tribal territory as an hereditary fief to the existing 
chieftain was to introduce the feudal rule of descent 
and to disappoint the roydamnas, other than the 
chieftain's eldest son, of all hope of succession. 

Having thus secured the allegiance of the 
King of Connaught, while that of the O'Briens 
of Thomond was already assured, John de Gray 
next turned his attention to the chieftains of the 
north of Ireland. Aedh O'Neill, the most power- 
ful of these, had, as we have seen, joined the 


expedition to Carrickf ergus to expel his dangerous Attempt 
neighbour Hugh de Lacy, but he avoided giving the chief- 
hostages to King John — perhaps he refused to tEorth. 
give them. We may conclude that John had 
directed his justiciar, after securing Cathal's 
allegiance, to take measures to enforce the sub- 
mission of the north. It was a difficult enter- 
prise, as the whole history of Ireland shows, and, 
with the scanty means at the bishop's disposal, an 
impossible one. Nevertheless the bishop seems 
to have laid his plans well. The recalcitrant 
chieftains were attacked from three different 
quarters. First of all a hosting of Connaught 
men, presumably by agreement with Cathal, was 
sent under the leadership of Gilbert Mc Costello 
(who had long been in Cathal's service, and held 
land in Connaught) to Assaroe, at the debatable 
borderland between Connaught and Tirconnell. 
Here, somewhere in the district known as 
Caol-uisce (Narrow Water), where the waters of Castle of 
Lough Erne begin to narrow into the river, they uisce. 
erected a castle.^ This was the gate of Con- 
naught from the north, and the scene of many 
a battle with the Cinel Connell. Cathal may 
have consented to the erection of a castle here 
to protect Connaught from his hereditary foes, 

1 Ann. Ulster, Ann. Loch Ce, 1212 ; Four Masters, 1211. 
In 1214 the territory of Carbury (Co. Sligo), not many miles 
south of Assaroe, is called by the Four Masters the posses- 
sion of Philip Mac Costello. 

1226 n T 


while John de Gray's object may rather have 
been to obtain a basis for action in this direc- 
tion against the northern chieftains. About the 
same time the bishop led an English force to 
Castle of Clones and erected a castle there, with the object, 
according to an Irish annalist, ' of taking posses- 
sion of the North of Erinn '. Clones was an 
ancient ecclesiastical centre in Irish Uriel, and 
lay outside the area of English domination, the 
limits of which in this region seem to have been 
marked by Roger Pipard's castle of Donagh- 
mojme. There is a steep mote at Clones which 
may be regarded as a memorial of this expedi- 
tion. The attempt, however, failed. Mac Mahon, 
chieftain of Uriel, checked the advance into Tir- 
owen, and Aedh O'Neill completed the defeat.^ 
Lastly, the bishop probably countenanced, if 
he did not actually plan, an incursion made in 
Incursion this year by the Scots of Galloway to Derry and 
Scots of Inishowen against the Cinel Owen. John, as 
* °^*y- we have seen, had rewarded Duncan of Carrick's 
capture of Maud de Braose by a grant of territory 
between Wulfrichford (near Larne) and Glenarm 
in Antrim. He also, it seems, promised a huge 
grant of lands in the northern part of the lordship 
of Ulster to Alan Fitz Roland, Earl of Galloway, 
Duncan's nephew.^ Some time in the spring of 

1 Aim. Loch Ce, Aim. Ulster, 1212 ; Four Masters, 1211. 

2 ' Alanus filius Roulandi ' accompanied John's army in 
Ireland ; Rot. de Prest., 12 Jolm, p. 1S6. 


1212 the bishop met at Carrickfergus emissaries 
from Alan, including Alan's uncle, and there 
assigned to Alan on the king's behalf 140 fees, 
extending apparently over the whole north-east 
of Ulster from the river Foyle to the Glynns of 
Antrim. From this grant were excepted ten 
fees on each side of the Bann near the castle of 
Kilsantan, which were to be retained in the 
king's hand ; also all church-lands, and the lands 
already granted to Duncan of Carrick.^ It can 
hardly be a mere coincidence that in this same 
year Alan's brother, Thomas, Earl of Athol, and 
some of the Mac Donnells came with a fleet of 
seventy-six ships to Derry, and in company with 
O'Donnell spoiled Inishowen.^ Indeed the expe- 
ditions of the men of Galloway mentioned in 
the annals are regularly followed by grants from 

1 Rot. Pat., 14 John, p. 98; C. D. I., vol. i, no. 427. 
vSee tills document transcribed with annotations by Bishop 
Reeves : Eccl. Ant. Down, Connor, and Dromore, pp. 323-5. 
The grant to Alan was confirmed by John in 1215 (Rot. 
Chart., 17 John, p. 210), and by Henry III in 1220 ; Rot. 
Claus., 4 Hen. Ill, p. 420 b. 

2 Ami. Ulster, 1212 ; Ann. Loch Ce, 1211 ; Four Masters, 
1211. There can be little doubt that the true date of all 
three expeditions, to Caol-uisce, Clones, and Derry, was 1212. 
The entries in the Four Masters at this period are regularly 
antedated by a year. Inishowen, the peninsula between 
Lough Swilly and Lough Foyle, was for centuries debatable 
land between the Cinel Owen and the Cinel Connell. It had 
been plundered by John de Courcy in 1197, and seems to 
have been taken by O'Neill from O'Donnell after a bloody 
battle in 1209 (Ann. Ulster, &c.). 

T 2 


the Crown to the leaders engaged. Thus the 
expedition of 1212 was rewarded in July 1213 
by a grant to the Earl of Athol of that part of 
Derry which belonged to O'Neill.^ Again, in 1214 
Thomas Mac Uchtry (as the Irish annalists call 
the Earl of Athol after his grandfather, Uchtred 
Castle of or Gothred) built the castle of Coleraine, ' and 
they threw down all the cemeteries and clochans 
(probably dry-stone beehive-shaped cells) and 
buildings of the town, excepting the church alone, 
in order to build this castle.' ^ It was evidently of 
stone. On the same day as King John confirmed 
the charter to Alan of Galloway (June 27, 1215) 
he granted another to his brother Thomas, 
including Kilsantan and the castle of Coleraine, 
with ten knights' fees on both sides of the Bann.^ 

1 Rot. Chart., 15 John, m. 3 (p. 194), where ' Talachot ' 
is perhaps Tullyhoe in the parish of Tallaght-Finlagan, 
Keenaught, and not, as has been supposed, Tullaghoge near 
Dungannon. There are indications that this grant was not 
wholly inoperative. There were Mac Donnells in Derry in 
the middle of the thirteenth century. Thus in 1259 Aedh 
O' Conor went to Derry to espouse the daughter of Dugald, 
son of Sorley Mac Donnell, and he brought home eight-score 
men with her, together with Alan Mac Sorley ; Ann. Loch Ce. 

2 Ann. Ulster, 1214 ; Ann. Loch Ce, 1213. In the 
previous year O'Kane, the petty King of Ciannacta and 
Fir na Craibhe, districts west of the Bami which had been 
granted to Alan, was killed by the Foreigners ; and in 1214 
Thomas of Galloway and Rory Mac Raghnall (Mac Donnell) 
again plundered Derry and carried off the loot to Coleraine. 

3 Rot. Chart., 17 Jolm, pt. i, m. 10 (p. 210). The castle 
of Coleraine was demohshed by Hugh de Lacy and Aedh 


Thus early were the Scots planted in the north- 
east of Ireland, where they lived for centuries 
and formed a clan distinct from, but hardly 
less turbulent than, the Irish clans of Tirowen. 

Notwithstanding these comprehensive plans, The 
the attempt to enforce the submission of Aedh unsuc- 
O'Neill was a failure. Not only did he repulse ^^^^^'^^' 
the advance into Tirowen from the newly erected 
castle of Clones, but in the following year, 1213, 
he burned the castle itself.^ About the same 
time, at his instigation, the subordinate chieftain 
of Fermanagh, named O'Hegney, whose daughter 
Benmee was married to Aedh, burned the castle 
of Caol-uisce and killed its garrison, including 
Gilbert McCostello ; ' and in 1214 Aedh ' dealt 
a red slaughter ' on the foreigners of Ulidia.^ 

O'Neill in 1222 (Ann. Ulster, 1222 ; Ann. Loch Ce, 1221). 
When Hugh de Lacy's lands were restored in 1226-7 it 
would seem that the restoration was made ' saving the 
seisins of Alan and Thomas de Galloway ' (C. D. I., vol. i, 
nos. 1372, 1498). In the to\\'n of Coleraine on the west side 
of the Bann is an artificial mound known as Gallows Hill, 
near the church of Killowen. This was probably the site 
of Thomas of Galloway's castle, and also of a later castle, 
called Drum Tairsigh, erected in 1248. 

1 Ann. Ulster and Ann. Loch Ce, 1213. 

2 Ibid. O'Hegney's name is given, Ann. Clonmacnois 
and Four Masters, 1212. Benmee died 1215. 

3 Ann. Ulster and Ann. Loch Ce, 1214. O'Neill is said 
at the same time to have burned ' the Carlongphort '. This 
has been taken to refer to CarUngford, but it can hardly 
mean the castle, which seems to have been at this time safe 
in the custody of Roger Pipard (Rot. Pat., 17 John, p. 148), 


In fact, during a long reign of upwards of thirty 
years, though his territory was frequently raided 
by the foreigners, and though he had many con- 
flicts with the Cinel Connell, with Connaught, 
and even with his own tribesmen, Aedh O'Neill 
remained to the last ' a king who gave neither 
pledge nor hostage to Foreigner nor Gael '.^ 

After his repulse by Mac Mahon and O'Neill 
in 1212, John de Gray's attention was diverted 
Disturb- by disturbances in the south-western portion of 
Fiicai, Meath, which it will be recollected was at this 
and^Eiy. ^^^^ ^^ ^^® king's hand. The ancient kingdom 
of Meath extended into the western part of the 
modern King's County, where the barony of 
Garrycastle represents the Irish district of Delvin 
Mac Coghlan, and the baronies of Ballycowan, 
Ballyboy, and Eglish represent the district of 
Fircal. The remaining western baronies, Bally- 
britt and Clonlisk, were included in Ely 0' Carroll, 
which was reckoned part of Munster, and in 
the diocese of Killaloe. Since 1184, when Art 
O'Melaghlin, King of West Meath, was killed, 
Melaghlin Beg, or ' the Little ', was king of the 
Irish of that region. In recent years, like the 
Kings of Thomond and Coimaught, he seems to 

and it may be doubted whether it refers to that place at all, 
which is elsewhere always called Cairlinn in the Annals. 
Perhaps some minor fortress or fortified camp (longport) in 
the neighbourhood of Coleraine was intended. 
1 Ann. Loch Ce, 1230. 


have acquiesced in the Norman policy of ' pacific 
penetration ', in the building of castles and 
planting of English settlements in various parts 
of his reduced kingdom, and we find Norman 
baron and subordinate Irish chieftain living in 
amity as neighbours. But there were among 
the ' roydamnas ' some who resented the sub- 
mission of their rulers, and perhaps thought by 
a ' spirited foreign policy ' to earn for themselves 
the succession to the chieftainship. Such were 
Murtough, son of Brian O'Brien of Slieve Bloom, Mur- 
and Cormac, son of Art O'Melaghhn. Brian of BrikT 
of Slieve Bloom had been for a brief period, in ^f ^heve 
1168-9, King of Ormond, when he was blinded 
by his brother, Donnell Mor O'Brien,^ and thus 
Murtough had through his father special claims 
on Ormond, including presumably Ely 0' Carroll, 
or the territory to the west of Slieve Bloom. 
This district was included in the grant to 
Theobald Walter ; but he died in 1206, and as 
his son was a minor ^ the fief was taken into 
the king's hand. In 1207, however, John gave 
Matilda le Vavasour, widow of Theobald Walter, 
in marriage to Fulk Fitz Warin, with seisin of 
one-third of Theobald's land in dower.^ How 

^ Ann. Tigernach Continuation, 1168 ; Four Masters, 
1169. See Pedigree of the O'Briens, supra, p. 151. 

2 This son, Theobald II, came of age and obtained seisin 
in 1221 : Rot. Glaus., 5 Hen. Ill, p. 463 b. 

3 Rot. Glaus., 9 John, p. 92 b. 


far Theobald had exploited his Irish lands cannot 
be stated with certainty,^ but he gave a large 
grant in Ely in frank-marriage to his daughter 
Beatrice (by a former marriage) and Thomas de 
Hereford,^ and we may perhaps infer that the 
castles in Ely to be mentioned presently were 
erected by Theobald's feoffees. Fircal, as we 
have seen, seems to have been claimed by Meiler 
Fitz Henry adversely to Walter de Lacy, but in 
the winter of 1207-8, in the course of his dispute 
with William Marshal and the de Lacys, Meiler 
was driven out of Fircal and out of his castle 
of Ardnurcher. Soon afterwards, taking advan- 
tage, no doubt, of the falling out of the invaders 
to endeavour to regain the territory near Slieve 
Bloom, Murtough O'Brien destroyed the castles 
of Kinnity, Birr, and Lothra — perhaps Lorrha, 
in County Tipperary, or perhaps the place now 
known as the Mote of Laragh (Ir. Lathrach), in 
Upper Ossory.^ This was in 1208. In the 

^ We can trace Theobald exercising acts of ownership 
at Caherconlish and Abbeyowney in County Limerick, at 
Nenagh, Thurles, and perhaps Lorrha, in County Tipper- 
ary, as- well as in Ely. He also held lands at Arklow, 
Tullow, and Gowran, in Leinster, and at Ardmulchan in 
Meath. ♦ 

2 These lands included Corcatenny (now the parish of 
Templemore) and Ikerrin in County Tipperary : Reg. St. 
Thomas's, Dublin, pp. 196-7. Beatrice afterwards married 
Hugh Purcell, baron of Lochmoe (ibid., p. 193). Roger Poer 
was another of Theobald's feoffees in Ely (ibid., p. 198). 

3 Ann. Clonmacnois, 1207. At this time Murtough 



preceding year the sons of Art O'Melaghlin, who 
was the predecessor of Melaghhn Beg in the 
titular kingship of Meath, preyed the town of 
BaUyloughloe and burnt part thereof. Melaghhn 
Beg and certain English forces overtook the 
marauders, but were discomfited, and a son of 
the king was slain.^ In 1212 Cormac, one of Cormac 
the sons of Art O'Melaghlin, again became very laghiin. 
active. He was opposed not only by the English 
settlers, but sometimes by Irishmen as well, but 
he was generally successful, especially over the 
English. He wrested Delvin Mac Coghlan from 
them, probably early in 1212. Thereupon ' the 
foreign bishop' hastened to Leinster, and, joined 
by the forces of Munster under Donough Cair- 
brech O'Brien, delivered battle at a place called 
Kilnagrann in Fircal, but was defeated with loss 
of ' cows, horses, gold, silver, and other things '.^ 
Next, in 1213, a purely Irish combination, con- 
sisting of an O'Brien of Thomond, an O'Melaghlin 

O'Brien, with the sons of O'Conor of Connaught, also 
spoiled the castle of Athronny in Leix, identified by 
O'Donovan with Balljroan in Queen's County. There are, 
or were, motes at these four places : Journ. R. S. A. I. 
1909, p. 336. 

^ Ann. Clonmacnois, 1206. BaUyloughloe (Ir. Baile locha 
Luatha, ' the town of the lake of ashes,' i. e. dried-up lake ?) 
is six miles east of Athlone. There is ' a typical Norman 
mote here fashioned out of an esker ridge, and apparently 
untouched since it bore its wooden tower and wooden 
paUsades ' : Journ. R. S. A. I. 1907, p. 273. 

2 Ann. Clonmacnois, 1211 ; Ann. Loch Ce, 1212. 


of Meath, an O'Dempsy of Clan Malier, and a 
Mac Gillapatrick of Upper Ossory, succeeded 
in giving Cor mac ' an overthrow '.^ Evidently 
Cormac was a discontented roydamna, who tried 
to win a principality, or at least plunder, for him- 
self, and cared not at whose expense. Then the 
Englishmen of Meath combined against him, but 
once more were overthro^vn at the same battle- 
field of Kilnagrann in Fircal. Among the names 
of those slain we can recognize Piers Messet, 
Baron of Lune in Meath. This time Cormac 
was assisted by Aedh, son of Conor Mainmoy, 
and Melaghlin, son of Cathal Carragh, disap- 
pointed ' roydamnas ' like himself.'^ They formed 
a sort of ' cave of AduUam '. On the side of 
the English was Geoffrey de Marisco, who was 
perhaps temporarily appointed custos or deputy 

^ Ann. Clonmacnois, 1212. These chieftains had all 
probably made terms with the English. They were Mur- 
tough O'Brien of Thomond, Donnell, son of Donnell 
Bregach O'Melaghlin, the recognized tanist of Melaghlin 
Beg of West Meath, Cuilen O'Dempsy of Clan Malier, and 
Donnell Clannagh MacGillapatrick of Upper Ossory. All 
of them were left in possession of parts of their territories. 

2 Ann. Loch Ce, 1213 ; Ann. Clonmacnois, Four Masters, 

1212. The editor of the Annals of Loch Ce, following 
O' Donovan, suggests that the two entries as to Kihiagrann 
refer to the same battle, but the details as well as the 
dates are different. The second battle probably took 
place after John de Gray's return to England in July 

1213. Obit Petrus Messet, 1213, Chart. St. Mary's, DubUn, 
vol. i, p. 31, 


in the place of the Bishop of Norwich, prior 
to the arrival of the new justiciar, Archbishop 
Henri de Londres.^ 

Henri de Londres had been recently appointed Hemi de 
Archbishop of Dublin in succession to John justiciar. 
Cumin, who died about the close of 1212. He 
had been a trusted minister of King John from 
the beginning of his reign. He was an expe- 
rienced lawyer, and had acted as an itinerant 
justice in Berkshire and as a judge of the king's 
bench at Westminster. He was a skilful diplo- 
matist, and had been employed on various 
embassies to foreign countries. He had served 
as a treasury official, and it is probable that 
his experience as such was not the least of his 
recommendations for his new post in his master's 
eyes, now that Ireland was becoming a consider- 
able source of revenue to the Crown. He was 
not unknown in Ireland. As Archdeacon of 
Stafford he had formed one of a special commis- 
sion sent to Ireland in 1204 to adjudicate on the 
cross plaints of Meiler Fitz Henry and WiUiam 
de Burgh, and at the same time he was com- 
missioned along with Meiler Fitz Henry to 
negotiate with Cathal Crovderg concerning the 

^ The Bishop of Norwich, with 500 knights and many 
horsemen from Ireland, attended the great muster at 
Barham Down near Canterbury, May 4-6, 1213, and appears 
not to have returned to Ireland : Rog. of Wend., vol. ii, 
p. 67. Archbishop Hem^i did not reach Ireland before the 
end of July, when he came as justiciar. 


future tenure of Connaught.^ He was again sent 
to Ireland in June 1212,^ but for what purpose 
does not appear. And now, on July 23, 1213, 
three days after the ceremony of the king's 
absolution from the papal excommunication, 
John thanked the prelates and magnates of 
Ireland for their good and faithful service, which 
had been commended by the Bishop of Norwich, 
and notified to them the appointment of Arch- 
bishop Henri as justiciar.^ At this time the 
archbishop retained the office of justiciar for 
barely two years, when he was summoned to the 
king's presence and stood by the king at Runny- 
mede on June 15, 1215.^ On July 6, Geoffrey 
de Marisco was formally appointed justiciar in 
his stead,^ and it was not until July 1221 that 
the archbishop was again in complete control, 
under the king, of the government of Ireland.^ As 
justiciar, and still more indelibly as archbishop, 
he has left his mark on the country. At present, 
however, we are only concerned with his doings 
during his first tenure of office, when he was 

1 Rot. Pat., 5 John, p. 39 b ; Rot. de Lib., 5 John, p. 83. 

2 Rot. Claus., 14 John, m. 8. 

3 Rot. Pat., 15 John, p. 102. 

^ Rog. of Wend., vol. ii, p. 118. 

5 Rot. Pat., 17 John, p. 148. 

6 Cal. Docs. Ireland, no. 997. Prior to this, in 1217, 
Geoffrey de Marisco was ordered to abide by the archbishop's 
counsel, especially as to disbursements from the Exchequer, 
and do nothing without his assent ; ibid., no. 780. 


more of a statesman and less of an ecclesiastic 
than he afterwards became. 

The new justiciar arrived in Ireland about 
the beginning of August 1213, and had at once 
to deal with the disturbances in Ely 0' Carroll, 
Fircal, and Delvin. Carrying out the plans of 
castle-building initiated by his predecessor, he 
first of all built or completed a castle at Roscrea/ Castle at 
The situation, near the southern end of the 
Slieve Bloom Mountains, was well chosen to 
command and keep open at this critical point 
the main route from Dublin and Kildare to 
the newly settled districts in Ormond and 
Limerick. It was on the line of the ancient 
Irish road known as slighe Data. The old but 
now probably disused monastery of St. Cronan, 
still marked by the ruins of a round tower and 
Romanesque church, formerly existed at Roscrea, 
and the church-lands on which the castle was 
built belonged to the see of Killaloe, in which 
the ancient bishopric of Roscrea had been 
recently merged. An inquisition taken in 1245 ^ 
informs us of the circumstances in which the 
castle was built, and is substantiated on all 
essential points by the annals. It is interesting, 
too, as showing incontrovertibly that even at 
this period the Normans, sometimes at any rate, 

1 Four Masters, 1212 {recte 1213). 

2 Inquis. P. M., 29 Hen. Ill, no. 43 ; Cal. Docs. Ireland, 
vol. i, no. 2760. 


built castles of the mote and bretesche type. 
The inquisition was evidently taken at the re- 
quest of Donatus or Donough O' Kennedy, then 
Bishop of Killaloe, with a view to obtaining com- 
pensation for the church-lands occupied by the 
castle. The jurors found that in time past Mur- 
tough Mac Brien ravaged the land of Ormond 
and Ely 0' Carroll, and levelled five castles there, 
whereupon the king's force and council assembled 
at Roscrea to expel Murtough. The king's 
council commenced fortifying a castle in the 
vill of Roscrea, by erecting a mote and bretesche 
{mota et britagium). The lands at the time 
belonged as of right to the bishopric of Killaloe, 
and the bishop, Cornelius or Conor O'Heney, 
hearing that Archbishop Henri had by King 
John's direction repaired to the vill, came thither 
and forbade, under penalty of excommunica- 
tion, the continuing of the work. The justiciar 
thereupon besought Bishop Cornelius on behalf 
of the king that he might be allowed for the 
common good to fortify the mote and bretesche 
until the termination of the Avar, undertaking 
in the king's name that the bishop should then 
have the vill and its appurtenances, or the just 
value thereof. The bishop thereupon granted 
permission accordingly. The j urors further found 
that the lands were worth thirty-five marks 
a year, and that the custodian of the castle 
received the marches as his fee. Whether the 


bishop obtained compensation immediately as 
a result of this finding does not appear, but 
ultimately, in 1280, when an Edwardian castle, 
the ruins of which remain, was being built at 
Roscrea, the matter was settled by the bishop, 
Matthew O'Hogan, granting to the king the 
manor of Roscrea, and the king ' releasing ' to 
the bishop three carucates and 84| acres of 
land in the manor of Newcastle de Leuan in 
the vale of Dublin.^ 

After building the castle the English forces 
fought a battle with Murtough, son of Brian 
of Slieve Bloom, at Killeigh, a little to the 
south of TuUamore, in which Melaghlin, son of 
Cathal Carragh, was killed.^ We hear no more 
of Murtough. 

Next year (1214) Cormac, son of Art O' Me- 
laghlin, continued his raids and succeeded in, 
taking spoils from the castles of Ardnurcher and 
Kinclare. Then a great muster was made of 
all the forces of the English ' together with all 
the Irish forces that owed service to the King 
of England ', and at last Cormac suffered a defeat 
at their hands, probably at Clara, in the barony 
of Kilcoursy, and Cormac was banished from 
Delvin.^ Then the English built a castle at Castle 

of Clon- 

Clonmacnois, where a mote and bailey sur- macnois. 

1 Rot. Chart., 8 Ed. I ; Cal. Docs. Ireland, ii, 1663, 1664. 

2 Ann. Clonmacnois, Four Masters, 1212 {recte 1213). 

3 Ibid. 1213 {recte 1214). 


rounded by a deep ditch still support the ruins 
of a later stone castle. They also repaired or 
re-erected the castles of Durrow, Birr, and 
Kinnitty,^ so that the whole district was ringed 
round with castles, all probably of the mote and 
bretesche type. The wooden defences of these 
castles, once they were carried, were easily de- 
stroyed, but the earthworks remained and were 
almost as easily re-fortified. 

Like the castles of Athlone and Roscrea, the 
castle of Clonmacnois was built on church- 
land, and for all three compensation was duly 
paid to the ecclesiastical owner. In the case of 
Athlone the tithe of the expenses of the castle 
was ordered to be paid to the prior, and four 
cantreds in the fee of Loughsewdy, confiscated 
from Walter de Lacy, were assigned to him, 
and when these lands were restored to Walter 
an exchange was ordered to be made. For many 
years an annuity of ten marks for ' the vill, castle, 
mill, and fishery towards Connaught ' was paid 
to the prior of Athlone.^ In the case of Roscrea, 
as we have seen, the compensation appears to 
have been delayed, but when given at last it 

1 Ibid. In the Annals of Loch Ce, 1214, is mentioned the 
building of the castles of Clonmacnois and Durrow, and 
further depredations of Cormac, son of Art, including the 
burning of the bawns of the castles of Ballyboy in Fircal 
and of Birr. 

2 Rot. Claus., 16 John, p. 170 b ; 18 John, p. 273 ; Cal. 
Docs. Ireland, vol. i, no. 2289. 


was given with a generous hand. In the case 
of Clonmacnois the justiciar was ordered to 
compensate the bishop for his land occupied 
in fortifying the castle, for his fruit-trees cut 
down, his cows, horses, oxen, and household 
utensils taken away or ' commandeered ' during 
the carrying on of the works.^ 

This favourable treatment of church property, Favour- 


and indeed of the rights of the Church generally, ment of 
by the Normans in Ireland contrasts strongly property. 
with their comparative disregard of the rights 
and property of laymen, whether princes or 
peasants, and whether native or foreign, and 
indeed is a complete inversion of more modern 
notions on the subject. Laymen of Norman 
blood were disseised by the Crown, in John's 
reign at all events, on the slightest pretext. 
Irish tribe-lands were disposed of even before 
the tribes were subdued, but in the grants made, 
whether by the Crown or by the barons, church 
property was habitually respected. In Ireland, 
as elsewhere, the clergy enjoyed under the 
Normans many rights and exemptions denied 
to laymen, and occupied in the eye of the law 
an exceptionally favourable position. These 
and other considerations make it impossible 
to believe that the plundering of churches so 
frequently recorded by the monkish annalists, 
especially in the earlier years of the invasion, 

1 Rot. Claus., 18 John, p. 273. 
1226 II tr 


was due to want of piety or due respect for 
the Church. We have already given positive 
proof, both from EngHsh and from Irish 
sources, that it was usual, at any rate in 
times of disturbance, to store provisions and 
goods of all sorts in churches, or within the 
sanctuaries of churches, for their better pro- 
tection.* To seize these was an ordinary military 
measure, and does not evince a sacrilegious 
spirit. Nor was it a measure adopted only by 
the Normans. Cormac, son of Art O'Melaghlin, 
we are told, ' went to the castle of Birr, burned 
its bawn, and burned the entire church and 
took all its food {biadh) out of it, in order that 
the Foreigners of the castle should not get food 
in it.' 2 

First j|3 ig probable that about this time the first 

stone ^ 

castle in stonc castlc in Dublin was completed. There 

com- was indeed a castle here of some sort from the 
^®*^^ ■ early days of the Norman occupation. Accord- 
ing to the Song of Dermot, when Henry was 
leaving Ireland he gave the custody of the city 
of Dublin and of the castle and the keep (e le 
chastel e le dongun) to Hugh de Lacy.^ These 
are the very words with which the same writer 
describes the mote-fortress erected soon after- 
wards for Hugh de Lacy at Trim, and the 
inference is that the fortress at Dublin was of 

1 Supra, pp. 195-8. 2 Ann. Loch Ce, 1214. 

3 Song of Dermot, 1. 2715. 


the same type. The porta castelli is mentioned 
in one of Strongbow's grants.^ To judge by the 
analogy of other walled towns, Wexford, for 
instance, the mote would have been erected 
adjoining the walls at some one point so as to 
form part of the general enceinte for defensive 
purposes against outside attack, and yet be 
separated by its ditch from the town, so as to be 
capable of defence in this direction also. That 
the castle of Dublin was surrounded by a ditch 
and approached by a bridge prior to John's 
reign we know from a curious record of the 
year 1200. This was a criminal pleading which 
came before the king concerning the murder 
of William le Brun, who was struck on the 
bridge of Dublin Castle by a man with a hatchet, 
and fell into the castle-ditch.^ This description, 
so far as it goes, harmonizes with the supposition 
that the castle was of the mote type. Further, 
that it was not a strong stone castle appears 
from a mandate of King John to Meiler Fitz 
Henry in 1204, directing him to build one. 

This mandate was to the following effect : 
* You have informed us that you have no fit 
place for the custody of our treasure, and inas- 
much as for this and for other purposes we need 
fortalices at Dublin, we command you to con- 
struct a strong castle there with good ditches 

1 Reg. St. Thomas's, Dublin, no. 419. Supra, vol. i, p. 370. 

2 Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, no. 116. 



and strong walls in a suitable place for the 
governance and, if need be, the defence of the 
town ; but first you are to construct a tower 
or keep {turris), where afterwards a castle and 
bailey {castellum et haluum) ^ and other necessary 
works may conveniently be constructed. For 
this at present you are to take 300 marks which 
Geoffrey Fitz Robert owes us.' ^ This keep may 
have been built by Meiler, but we have no proof. 
The works, however, appear to have extended 
over several years, and it is probable that John 
de Gray, who, as we have seen, was an energetic 
castle-builder, had much to do with pushing on 
its construction. At all events, the king's castle 
of Dublin was in existence at the close of John 
de Gray's term of office, when its custody was 
ordered to be delivered to Archbishop Henry, the 
new justiciar.^ To the archbishop, indeed, the 
building of the castle is ascribed in the annals 
of St. Mary's abbey, but probably he only 
completed the works. To make room for the 
fortifications of the castle certain churches were 

1 This is a good example of the distinction at this time 
between the turris or keep and the castellum or enclosing 
walls. So in the Song of Dermot we have the expression 
donjon e chastel, and in Irish tech ocus caislen. 

2 Rot. Claus., 6 John, p. 6 b. The debt of 300 marks had 
not been recovered from Geoffrey Fitz Robert by March 6, 
1206, when Meiler was ordered to distrain Geoffrey's lands 
for it : C. D. I., vol. i, no. 287. 

3 Rot. Pat., 15 John, p. 105 b. 


cleared away, for which the archbishop received 
a grant of two cantreds without DubUn as 
compensation.^ This castle, of the keep and 
bailey plan, occupied part of the site of the 
present castle, and it seems probable that the 
Record Tower still preserves in its lower stages 
some of the masonry of the original keep. 

During the years that followed John's visit Loyalty 
to Ireland the barons there, unlike the English Irish 
barons, seem to have been thoroughly loyal to ''^^°°^- 
the Crown. This may have been in part due to 
the severe lesson which John had given to the 
de Lacys and William de Braose, but their loyal 
conduct, for which the king thanked his Irish 
barons more than once, should also be attributed 
to the skilful handling of the justiciar, John de 
Gray, and above all to the example and leading 
of the greatest of them, William Marshal. Two 
remarkable letters from the king, and a still 
more remarkable manifesto of the barons, are 
evidence of this loyalty. It is difficult to date 
these documents precisely, or even to determine 
their relative sequence, but on the whole it is 
probable that the manifesto preceded the letters, 
which seem rightly ascribed to about October 
1212.^ This manifesto purports to proceed from 

1 Rot. Pat., 1 Hen. Ill, m. 2 ; Cal. Docs. Ireland, no. 805. 

2 From its opening words the manifesto apparently 
followed the Pope's action in absolving or threatening to 
absolve the king's subjects from their fealty to the king. 




to the 
of Nor- 
wich and 

William Marshal, Earl of Pembroke, and twenty- 
six of the principal magnates of Ireland on 
behalf of the rest. ' Moved with grief and 
astonishment,' they say, ' they had lately heard 
that the Pope proposed to absolve the subjects 
of the king from their fealty, because the king 
resisted the injury done to him regarding the 
matter of the church of Canterbury.' They go 
on to defend the king's action as directed to 
preserve the liberty and dignity which the Crown 
had hitherto enjoyed, and conclude by stating 
that ' with the king they are prepared to live 
or die, and to the last they will faithfully and 
inseparably adhere to the king.' ^ 

John's letter to the Bishop of Norwich com- 
mends the discretion of the bishop, thanks him 
and the barons of Ireland for the oath of fealtv 
which the barons lately tendered, and repeats 
the substance of his letter to the Earl Marshal. 
In this latter John returns special thanks to the 
earl as the prime mover in the matter (which 

This appears to have been done either by Pandulf on the 
failure of his negotiations with John on the 30th August, 
1211 (Ann. of Burton), or, more probably, b}^ the Pope 
himself on the return of his envoj^s (Rog. de Wendover^ 
ii. 59). Doubt has been thrown on this storj^ by Sir James 
Ramsay (Angevin Empire, p. 430), but it would seem to 
have been believed at the time in Wales : Brut y Tywys. 
(1212), p. 273. 

1 Cal. Docs. Ireland, i, no. 448, from the Red Book 
Exchequer, Q. R. 


we can well believe), begs him to remain in 
Ireland to assist the bishop in expediting the 
king's affairs, sends a transcript of letters (about 
which nothing further is known) made to the 
king by the magnates of England, and prays the 
earl with the other barons of Ireland to put their 
seals to similar letters. Finally, he alludes to 
the Marshal's counsel about establishing peace 
with the Church, and desires him to notify under 
what form it seems meet to the common council 
of the king's faithful subjects of Ireland that 
peace should be made without injury to the 
king's rights.^ 

Early in 1213 King John issued a general 
summons to all who owed him fealty to muster 
at Dover at the close of Easter. This was in 
view of the meditated invasion of the French 
king. The muster took place, and the troops, 
said to be 60,000 strong, were reviewed at ij,Jij 
Barham Down near Canterbury, early in May. ^^^^^^ ^^ 
Among those assembled were Bishop John of Barham 


Norwich and Earl William Marshal, with 500 May 4-6. 
knights and many other horsemen from Ireland.^ 
That Ireland could be denuded of such a force 
without any disturbance arising, beyond a con- 

1 Rot. Claus., 14 John, p. 132 b. 

2 Roger of Wendover, vol. ii, p. 67. William Marshal, 
when summoned to John, is said to have advised this 
muster : Hist. G. le Marechal, vol ii, p. 161 ; where ' le 
mont de Brandone " no doubt represents Barham Down. 


tinuance of the petty raids of the disappomted 
roydamnas, is a noteworthy proof of the strength 
of the Enghsh colonists when not divided against 
themselves, and a striking indication of the 
general contentment of the Irish among them 
with the new order of things. 
John's On May 15 John met Pandulf the papal legate 

der. at the house of the Templars near Dover, where 
' of his own free-will and by the common counsel 
of his barons ', as he says, he surrendered to 
the Pope the realms of England and Ireland to 
receive them back and hold them as a feudatory 
of the Roman Church. He also swore fealty to 
the Pope and undertook to pay to the Roman 
Church 1,000 marks annually, 700 for England 
and 300 for Ireland. Among the witnesses 
to this humiliating charter were Henry, Arch- 
bishop of Dublin, John, Bishop of Norwich, 
and William, Earl of Pembroke.^ This took place 
a few days before Ascension Day. Verily the 
hermit Peter, who prophesied that on that day 
John would no longer be king, might claim that 
his prophecy had come true. The immediate 
effect, however, was to disperse the storm that 
was gathering both at home and abroad, and 
fix John's crown more securely on his head. In 
Ireland, indeed, John's reconciliation with the 
papacy had no more effect than his previous 
quarrel. The interdict did not apply to Ireland, 
1 Roger of Wendover, vol. ii, pp. 74-6. 


and there were now no disloyal barons. They 
had expressed their indignation at the Pope's 
sentence of deposition and their determination 
to adhere to the king, but at the same time they 
had apparently counselled him to make peace 
with the Church, and their leader and spokesman, 
William Marshal, stood by John's side when 
the submission was made. In Ireland there was 
certainly no indignation at the surrender, if 
indeed that sentiment was widely felt anywhere 
at the time. 

In the wringing of the Great Charter from Magna 


John the Irish barons, though they had suffered 
much from his exactions, extortions, and oppres- 
sions, played no part. It may be, however, 
that, while the chief credit for that achievement 
must be assigned to the firmness and far-sighted 
statesmanship of Stephen Langton, John was 
actually induced to sign the document by the 
upright, wise, and loyal counsel given him by 
William the Marshal, who stood by his side and 
acted as intermediary, rather than by the bluster 
and threats of the revolted barons. John in 
his adversity had at last learned to value and 
trust in the earl as one who would give him 
disinterested, if not always palatable, advice, 
and for the last three years of his reign kept him 
pretty constantly at his side. 

In the weeks that followed the signing of the 
Great Charter, John made a large number of 


Followed grants to towns and individuals in Ireland of 

numerous ^ beneficial nature. The object in view may 

^^"0^10 ^^^ve been to keep the Irish barons steadfast in 

Ireland, their loyalty, or even largely to obtain money, 

but in the wise attention bestowed on Irish 

affairs at this time we may perhaps detect the 

influence of William Marshal and of the Dublin 

archbishop, both of whom were among the king's 

diminished counsellors. 

Charters Some of thesc grants we may here mention. 

Water- ^ ' To the citizcus of Dublin John granted the city 

Dungar-^ ^^^^ ^^^ provostship to be held in fee-farm at an 

van, 1215. annual rent of 200 marks, adding some new 

privileges and confirming all liberties and free 

customs previously conferred.^ To the citizens 

of Waterford he gave a charter defining the 

extent of the port of Waterford and granting 

a number of liberties and free customs similar 

to those given to Dublin by the charter of 1192, 

and in addition a declaration that all ships or 

boats entering the port between Rodybanke 

(Red Head, near Dunmore) and Ryndowane (the 

Hook) should load and unload at the Quay of 

Waterford and nowhere else within the port.^ 

William Marshal, who witnessed this charter, 

1 Rot. Chart., 17 John, p. 210 b. 

2 Chartae Priv. et Immun., p. 13, where the charter is 
wrongly dated 3rd July, a. r, vii, instead of 3rd July, a. r. 
xvii. It is witnessed by H[enri] Archbishop of DubUn and 
others who were all present at court on the 3rd July, 1215. 


cannot at the moment have foreseen how unfairly 
this exclusive privilege would work against his 
own port of New Ross, for there was no way of 
reaching it except between Red Head and the 
Hook. A few weeks later he obtained a mandate 
from John authorizing shipping to come to New 
Ross, ' provided no injury should thereby accrue 
to the king's vill of Waterford ' ; ^ but the 
proviso virtually nullified the concession, and 
century-long disputes resulted. To the burgesses 
of Dungarvan John granted all the liberties and 
free customs of Breteuil,^ a town in Normandy. 
This expression has been misunderstood. Fol- 
lowing the precedent of Henry's charter to 
Dublin, it became customary in Ireland, when 
granting charters to towns for the first time, to 
grant to them ' the law of Bristol '. Thus John 
in Henry's lifetime seems to have granted to the 
citizens of Cork the same free laws and free 
customs as the citizens of Bristol enjoyed.^ 
After 1188, when John granted an extended 
charter to Bristol, the law of Bristol would in- 
clude the liberties and free customs mentioned 
in that charter. These were substantially the 
liberties and free customs expressly included in 

1 Rot. Pat., 17 John, p. 153 b. 

2 Rot. Chart., 17 John, p. 211: ' omnes libertates et 
hberas consuetudines de Bretoill[io],' absurdly taken by 
Sweetman, Cal., vol. i, no. 578, as meaning ' bridge-toll '. 

^ See Council Book of Cork (Caulfield), p. x, referring to 
Harleian MS. no. 441. 


John's Dublin charter of 1192. In 1213, how- 
ever, John granted to the burgesses of Drogheda 
the law, not of Bristol, but of Breteuil, with all 
the Hberties and customs appertaining to that 
law.^ And now in granting a charter to Dun- 
garvan a similar phrase is used. What these 
customs of Breteuil exactly were we do not 
know, but they were probably not dissimilar 
from those granted to Bristol in 1188. In the 
first year of his reign John granted a charter to 
his burgesses of Breteuil {de Bretolio), on account 
of the great loss they had incurred in his service, 
that they might buy and sell throughout his 
land by the same liberties as were enjoyed by the 
burgesses of Verneuil (near Breteuil).^ The feudal 
lords in Ireland, however, in granting charters for 
the first time, granted liberties ' according to the 
law of Bristol ' . Thus Walter de Lacy granted the 
law of Bristol to his burgesses of Trim and Kells, 
and we find the burgesses of the archiepiscopal 
towns of Rathcoole, Ballymore, and Holywood 
holding according to the same laws and liberties.^ 

1 Rot. Chart., 17 John, p. 194: 'legem de Breteill[io] 
cum omnibus libertatibus et consuetudinibus ad eandem 
legem pertinentibus.' 

2 Rot. Chart., 1 John, p. 5 : 'ut emant et vendant per 
totam terram nostram per easdem Ubertates quas burgenses 
nostri de V[er]nolio habent.' 

^ For Trim and Kells see Chartae Priv. et Immun., p. 10 ; 
for Rathcoole, ibid., p. 33 ; for Ballymore and Holywood, 
Cal. Lib. Niger, Proc. R. I. A., xxvii (c), pp. 60, 62. 


Whatever the motive may have been, John's 
grants of charters to the seaport towns of Ireland 
gave a great impetus to the growth of Irish trade. 

His grants and restorations of lands to Grants to 
individuals at this time were no less remark- ^uais. 
able, and did something to restore the sense 
of security which must have been shattered by 
his wholesale confiscations in 1210. The lord- 
ship of Ulster was not restored to Hugh de Lacy,^ 
but many of the freeholders there and in Meath 
who had been taken prisoners in the castle of 
Carrickfergus were restored on payment of fines 
to their liberty and their lands. About the same 
time large grants of lands in the north of Ulster 
were, as we have seen, made to Thomas and 
Alan of Galloway and their uncle, Duncan of 
Carrick. With Walter de Lacy, however, the 
king now came to terms, and, in consideration 
of a fine of 4,000 marks, restored to him his 
lands and castles, except the castle of Drogheda, 
which was retained as a royal castle.^ In 
Leinster John made, or purported to make, a 
tardy restitution to William the Marshal by re- 
peatedly ordering that the castle of Dunamase, 
and all his fees in the lands held by Meiler 

1 There appear to have been negotiations for the restora- 
tion of Ulster to Hugh, but the stipulated fine (the amount 
is not stated) was not paid, so the king announced that he 
could only convert the land of Ulster to his own profit : 
Rot. Pat., 16 John, p. 134. 

2 Rot. Pat., 17 John, p. 181. 


Fitz Henry, should be restored to him.^ It 
seems, however, that these orders were not 
entirely carried out in John's lifetime.^ In 
Munster John granted to Thomas Fitz Anthony 
and his heirs the custody of the counties of 
Waterf ord and Desmond and of the city of Cork, 
and of all the demesnes and escheats of the king 
in those counties, for the yearly rent of 250 
marks.^ John appears to have treated the 
southern portion of the present county of Tip- 
perary as his demesne or escheat, probably as 
having been demesne of William de Braose, and 
for a fine of £100 he now granted to Philip 
of Worcester ' to maintain him on the king's 
service ' five cantreds in this district, and the 
castles of Knockgraffon, Kiltinan, and Ardmayle.* 
The honour of Limerick was not revived, but 
Kichard, son of William de Burgh, Maurice, son 

1 Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, nos. 644, 647, 664, 684, 
689, 691. 

2 On December 2, 1216, a few weeks after John's 
death, Meiler's service for his land in Leinster was ordered 
to be restored to the earl in a remarkable mandate : Rot. 
Pat., 1 Hen. Ill, m. 16. It would appear from Rot. Pat., 
17 John, pp. 161 b and 180, touching the restoration of 
Dunamase, that John employed certain secret signs {inter- 
signa) without which his justiciar was not to carry out his 
ostensible orders. 

3 Rot. Chart., 17 John, p. 210 b. 

4 Rot. Pat., 17 John, p. 147 b. The castle of Ardmayle, 
however, had belonged to Walter de Lacy and was afterwards 
restored to him. For Knockgraffon see supra, p. 147. 


of Gerald Fitz Gerald, and Hamo, son of Hamo 
de Valognes, were given seisin of their respective 
fathers' lands ; ^ while the cantred of Okonach 
(Coonagh), which seems to have been also demesne 
of William de Braose, and the vill and cantred 
of Tibrary (Tipperary) were granted to Arch- 
bishop Henry. ^ As regards Connaught, John 
made the grant to Cathal Crovderg to which we 
have already referred.^ 

John made several other grants and conces- 
sions to his Irish subjects during the last year 
of his reign, but we have mentioned the most 
important. Altogether the fines payable for 
them amounted to a considerable sum, which 
was badly needed for ' the Barons' War '. One 
of his very last acts indicates remorse for one 
of his many crimes. On the 10th of October, 
1216, he granted to Margaret de Lacy a site 
whereon to build a monastery for the good of the 
souls of her father, William de Braose, his wife 
and son.* John died on the 18th of October, 1216. 

It has been the fashion, especially with Charac- 
writers who have seldom a good word for Eng- John's 
lish policy in Ireland, to bestow a considerable "'^ ™ ^' 
measure of praise upon the action of King John 
in that country. But if we have correctly read 
the record of his rule, this praise was wholly 

1 Rot. Pat., 16 John, p. 118 b ; 17 John, p. 147. 

2 Rot. Chart., 17 John, p. 213. 

3 Supra, p. 285. « Rot. Pat., 18 John, p. 199. 


undeserved. We need not recall his disastrous 
boyish visit in 1185, nor dwell on the obscure 
period that elapsed before his accession to the 
throne. But from the commencement of his 
reign until near its close, when by his conduct in 
England he had alienated almost all support and 
could no longer make his will prevail, his action 
in Ireland seems to have been swayed by 
capricious favouritism or by vindictive personal 
animosity, without any regard for the general 
weal of his Irish dominion. For the native 
Irish themselves, in common with too many of 
his contemporaries, he had no sort of regard. 
But while aways ready to grant away their 
territories (for a consideration) to his favourites, 
he gave the latter no assistance in making his 
grants effective, and no support in establishing 
their rule. On the contrarv, with or without 
pretext, he again and again overrode his own 
grants in the most capricious manner. To recall 
only the principal examples : He first parcelled 
out the kingdom of Limerick among a number 
of tenants-in-chief of the Crown, and then, with- 
out any regard to the rights so conferred, sold 
the whole honour of Limerick to his favourite 
for the moment, William de Braose. A few years 
later he remorselessly hunted down William de 
Braose and his family, because he was unable 
to pay the stipulated consideration. He encour- 
aged Hugh de Lacy to make war upon John 


de Courcy, and when Hugh had succeeded, 
loaded him with honours and granted him the 
lands which his victim had won and organized. 
Then five years later he led a great army into 
Ireland, expelled both Hugh and his brother 
Walter, and confiscated their lands, on no better 
pretext than that they had endeavoured to 
shelter the objects of his tyranny. He similarly 
encouraged his justiciar Meiler Fitz Henry to 
make private war on William Marshal, and it 
was only when Meiler failed that he grudgingly 
acknowledged the earl's rights. Had John dared, 
however, we can hardly doubt that the fief of 
Leinster would have gone the same way as 
those of Limerick, Ulster, and Meath. John, in 
a word, was the same man in Ireland as in 
England : capricious, vindictive, tjrrannical, only 
that in his tyranny he was even less under 
control. But when he found himself almost 
alone and in need of the support of his Irish 
barons, then he did something to undo the evil 
he had done, to reinstate those he had dispos- 
sessed, and to grant a number of charters 
favourable to the trade of the seaport towns. 
Among the first acts of the new boy-king, or 
rather of his great regent Earl William Marshal, 
was to extend to Ireland the liberties which had 
been wrested from John for England, and to 
further the work of undoing, so far as might be, 
the wrong that John had done. 

1226 n 5 




Not quite half a century had now elapsed The Pax 


since the Norman invader first set foot on nica'^lth. 
Bannow Island, and in the course of that brief ^^^^^ 


period a great change had taken place over 
at least two-thirds of Ireland. In the eastern 
parts of Ulster and Uriel, throughout the whole 
of the ancient kingdoms of Meath, Leinster, 
Ossory, Desmond, and Limerick, the Normans 
dominated almost everywhere. In each lord- 
ship, after the first few years of resistance, a 
period of comparative peace and order com- 
menced such as Ireland had never known before. 
It was a veritable ' pax Normannica ', and was 
co-extensive with Norman sway. It was not 
produced by strong legionary forces encamped 
at strategic points, nor by armed garrisons 
within impregnable castles of stone. Wooden 
fortresses protected by earthworks were indeed 
erected on almost every manor, but except as 
j a safe retreat in the event of a sudden rising or 
for a last stand in the face of overwhelming odds, 
they were of little military avail, and in most 
cases after a generation or so were either con- 



verted into stone castles or fell into disuse. The 
conquest, rendered inevitable by the previous 
anarchy, was effected primarily by superior 
weapons and better discipline in the field, but 
the position won was maintained and peace 
secured by that instinct for organized rule which 
is the mark of progressive races all the world 
over, and which, for the time at any rate, in the 
districts named, led to a general acquiescence 
in the change of rulers. 

Some disturbances, no doubt, took place 
within this region, especially along the marches 
or borders between ' the land of peace ' and ' the 
land of war ', as the English and Irish districts 
were sometimes respectively called ; ^ but they 
were of small moment in comparison with the 
desolating raids that went on with little rest 
before the strong hand of the Normans stayed 
them. Above all, there were no more inter- 
provincial wars in this region. Neither an 
O'Brien, nor an 0' Conor, nor an O'Rourke, came 
swooping down with their hosts over Leinster or 
Meath, carrying off whatever booty they could 
lay hands on. Nor was the lordship of Ulster 
subject any longer to periodical devastation at 
the hands of the Cinel Owen. Only in those 
districts where the Normans were not supreme 

^ The use of the term ' English Pale ' to denote the 
districts dominated by the English prior to the fifteenth 
century is a misnomer and an anachronism. 


did the turmoil of the past continue — a turmoil 
now caused partly, but not exclusively, by the 
efforts of the new-comers to extend their domina- 
tion. Some of the leading barons, indeed, op- 
posed armed resistance to the forces of King 
John's first justiciar, and writers have dwelt 
on these conflicts as evincing the innate turbu- 
lence of the Normans. We have traced these 
disturbances, such as they were, to him who 
appears to have been their real author ; but in 
any case they were as nothing to the ' Barons' 
War ' which broke out in England a few years 
later from the same cause. On the whole, with 
one or two exceptions, the barons of Ireland 
stood faithfully by each other and by the 
common cause of the colony. 

As to the treatment of the Irish by the invaders Treat- 
I do not propose to consider the question from the Irish. 
the moral point of view. This is emphatically 
one of those questions which cannot be fairly 
or usefully discussed with a tacit reference to 
modern standards. In any case we must first 
of all find out, if we can, how the Normans did in 
fact treat the Irish. Then those whose knowledge 
of history is sufficient for the comparison may, if 
they wish, compare the action of the Normans with 
that of other conquering races in similar conditions 
elsewhere. To the preliminary investigation, 
which is encompassed by much difficulty, we may 
make the following tentative contribution. 


From what is known of the sub-infeudation 
of Leinster, Meath, and Uriel — and the same 
is probably true of other districts also — each of 
the larger sub-grants appears to have generally 
comprised the territory of a distinct sept, or 
smaller tribe, and to be now roughly represented 
by the baronial divisions. The few surviving 
charters or transcripts of charters show that the 
lands were conveyed under their old denomina- 
tions without any express mention of boundaries, 
and often as some particular sept or chieftain 
Expio- of a sept held the same. The former chieftain, 
Sf former whcthcr of a scpt or of a group of septs or larger 
chief?. division, was of course deprived in whole or in 
part of his ancient privileges. Where he resisted 
the invaders he either fell in the conflict or was 
expelled, or perhaps retired into a monastery.* 
In most cases, however, even in Meath and 
Leinster, and apparently still more often in 
Ulster and Munster, the more important chief- 
tains submitted to terms, accepted portions of 
their former territories, and continued to rule 
there according to Irish law. Thus the O'Me- 
laghlins in part of Westmeath, the 0'B3rrnes 
and O'Tooles on the skirts of the Wicklow Moun- 
tains, the MacMurroughs about the northern 
borders of their former principality, the O'Conors 

* Faelan MacFaelain, lord of Offelan, died in the monas- 
tery of Old Connell founded by Meiler Fitz Henry : Four 
Masters, 1203. 


Faly and the 0' Mores in the western parts of 
their territories, the Mac Gillapatricks in Upper 
Ossory, and other smaller chieftains, continued 
their tribal rule and organization, though in 
much more confined areas. In Munster, and 
perhaps in Ulster, English and Irish districts 
seem to have been still more closely intermixed. 
As an example of the gradual expropriation of 
an Irish chieftain we may mention the case of 
Donnell O'Faelain, lord of the Decies of Munster, 
who in 1204 quit-claimed to the king the pro- 
vince of Dungarvan, one of the three cantreds 
held by him, on condition that the other two 
should remain with him, one for his life, and 
the other as an inheritance.^ Somewhat similar 
arrangements were made, as we have seen, with 
the Mac Carthys, the O'Briens, and the 0' Conors. 
There is also at least one example — that of 
Donnell Mac Gillamocholmog — of an Irish chief- 
tain who became a feudal lord, and whose 
grandson, by intermarrying with the Geraldines 
and dropping the Irish surname, became almost 
indistinguishable from his Norman neighbours.^ 
Of the smaller chieftains some may have been 
treated similarly. Others perhaps were driven 

^ Rot. Claus., 6 John, p. 6 b : ' ita quod alii duo sibi 
re maneret, scilicet alter eorum in vita sua et alter hereditarie.' 

2 Supra, vol. i, p. 368, and see Gilbert's History of Dublin, 
vol. i, pp. 230-5, and Mr. Mills's paper, Journ. R. S. A. I. 
1894, p. 162. 



into the Irish districts at once. Sooner or later, 
throughout large parts of the east and south of 
Ireland, the lands held in severalty were ex- 
propriated, and probably became the demesnes 
of early Norman manors. 
Inter- Thus in many parts of the region nominally 


Irish dis- dominated by the Normans, as well as in the 
parts where they had effected no settlement, 
there remained Irish districts where the former 
Irish tribal organization was continued, where 
the ancient Brehon law was observed, where the 
former ruling families still continued to draw 
the allegiance of the tribesmen, and where the 
king's writ did not run. Even when these Irish 
districts were quiet and at peace with the 
Normans there was at first no amalgamation of 
the two peoples ; and, except so far as the Irish 
may have adopted from their neighbours some 
improved methods of building and perhaps of 
agriculture, or have taken advantage of the 
greater facilities now offered for trade, they seem 
to have participated but little in the increased 
prosperity of the rest of the country. On the 
other hand, these Celtic tribes interspersed 
among the feudalized districts had always the 
feeling rankling in their minds that the invaders 
had robbed them of the best lands, and they 
remained always ready, when opportunity should 
occur, to raid and plunder as of old, and if 
possible recover the land they had lost. 


But though sooner or later most of the free Retention 
tribesmen were thus in one way or another cleared of the 
off the feudalized districts, it was not so with the ^^^ " 
actual tillers of the soil. Every inducement was 
offered to them to remain on the newly settled 
land, and a variety of evidence goes to show 
that the inducements offered were effective. We 
have not only the express statement of Giraldus 
that it was a prime object with Hugh de Lacy 
to invite back to peace the rural inhabitants 
who had been driven out in the course of the 
reprisals that followed the rising of 1174, and to 
restore to them their farms and pasture lands, 
but we can see from the Treaty of Windsor with 
Rory O'Conor in 1175,* and from the mandate 
to the justiciary in 1204, ' to cause the villeins 
and fugitives from the province of Dungarvan 
to return with their chattels and retinue,' ^ that 
measures were taken to enforce the return to 
their homes of those who had fled when their 
tribe-land was first overrun. Moreover, from 
the surviving extents and accounts of manors Betaghs. 
dating from about the middle of the thirteenth 
century and from other sources, it appears that 
a class of Irish farmers called betagii or betaghs 
was generally to be found on each manor. Thus 
in the earliest Irish Pipe Roll that has been 
preserved we find in the crown-lands near Dublin 
considerable sums paid as rent by the betaghs 
* Supra, vol. i, p. 350. ^ j^q^^ Claus., 6 John, p. 6 b. 


of Othee, Obrun, and Okelli, tribe-lands on the 
skirts of the DubUn and Wicklow mountains.^ 
In some manors the rents of the betaghs were the 
principal source of income,^ and we can hardly 
doubt that they were very numerous, especially 
in the settled districts more remote from Dublin. 
Betaghs are identified as regards their legal 
status with the nativi or villeins of feudal law.* 
In the Rolls of Court they are often termed 
hihernici in a technical sense — in full phrase, 
hibernici servilis conditionis} Probably they 
represented the ' daer-stock tenants ' or ' base 
vassals ' of the Brehon law, who, as we have 
seen, were bound to pay food-rents and provide 
refection for their lord, to whom they had parted 
with their honour-price, and against whom they 
could not bear witness.^ Similarly in the Anglo- 

1 Irish Pipe Roll, 13 Hen. Ill, 35th Rep. D. K., p. 29. 

2 See the account of the manor of Lucan, Pipe Roll, 
2 Ed. I, summarized by IVIr. Mills, Journ. R. S. A. I. 1894, 
p. 174 ; and for further evidence as to the position of betaghs, 
the same writer's notice of the manor of St. Sepulchre, 
ibid. 1889, pp. 31-41, and 1890, pp. 54-63 ; and the extents 
of certain Munster manors, Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. i, nos. 
2607 (Kilsheelan) and 3203, vol. iii, no. 459. 

3 Stat., 14 Ed. II and 5 Ed. Ill, § 3 ; Early Statutes 
(Berry), pp. 292, 325 ; and cf. Harris's Ware, Antiquities 
(1764), p. 157. 

* Justiciary Rolls, Pref., p. viii. This double meaning 
of the term hibernicus has misled many writers. 

^ Supra, vol. i, p. 116. It would seem that the name 
must be connected with hiathad, the word used in the Book 
of Rights for refection. Orha hiatach is applied in the 


Irish courts it was a valid plea in bar that the 
plaintiff was a betagh or hibernicus who had 
not obtained the right to use English laws ; ^ 
and again similarly the Anglo-Irish lord could 
recover damages for the killing, assaulting, or 
robbing of his hibernici.^ It would seem, then, 
that the Normans, in not admitting betaghs to 
the full rights of freemen, were not lowering their 
status. The hibernicus might, however, be en- 
franchised by the king, or by his immediate lord,^ 
and in most of the cases that came before the 
courts such enfranchisement was in fact proved, 
and the plea in bar failed. Betaghs were perhaps 
at first adscripti glebae, like the sept of Mac- 
feilecan, transferred with the land of Baldoyle by 
Dermot's charter to the canons of All Saints, 
Dublin,* but some of them seem to have risen into 
the class of firmarii^ whose position was regulated 
by contract. 

Besides betaghs there was a large class of Irish 
agricultural labourers, including the lord's churls, 

Brehon Laws, vol. iv, p. 44, 1. 10, to lands set apart for 
providing food for the chief. The hiatach coitchenn, or 
' public hospitaller', must, however, be distinguished from 
these ordinary betaghs : Four Masters, 1225, note s ; and 
cf. the Idnbiatach of the Ann. Ulster, 1178. 
^ Justiciary Rolls, pp. 82, 454, &c. 

2 Ibid., pp. 156, 162, 221, &c. 

3 Ibid., p. 271, where Walter Otothel (O'Toole) produced 
a charter of enfranchisement given to his great-grandfather 
by William Marshal, Earl of Pembroke, in the tenth year 
of King John. * Reg. All Hallows, I. A. S., p. 50. 


who worked on his farms, and who perhaps 
represented the fuidhirs or bondsmen of the Celtic 
chief. Above these classes were Irish artisans 
of various sorts, who, though hibernici, were 
not of servile condition, and could sue and 
recover damages even against their employers.^ 
Mr. Mills, the present deputy-keeper of the 
records in Ireland, who has studied the condition 
of the inferior agricultural classes in the thir- 
teenth century, considers that their condition 
'was steadily improving where the power of the 
Norman colony was least disturbed, and while 
it retained anything of its pristine vigour '.^ 
'No To modern minds, however, the withholding 

to kiH the benefit of the laws of England from the Irish 
is the greatest blot on the record of the Normans 
in Ireland. Sir John Davies puts it in the fore- 
front of ' the defects in the civil policy and 
government which impeded a full conquest '. 
To take the most glaring case, ' it was often,' he 
says, ' adjudged no felony to kill a mere Irishman 
in time of peace.' ^ This is a difficult subject, 
which has never been adequately treated, and 

^ See Just. Rolls, p. 342. A case where the jury found 
that the plaintiff and his father were hibernici (Irishmen) 
and millers of the defendant and his father, but not hiber- 
nici (villeins) of the defendant. The plaintiff was therefore 
capable of suing, and in fact recovered damages. This is 
a good example of the double meaning of hibernictis. 

2 Journ. R. S. A. I. 1890-1, p. 62. 

3 Discovery (1787), pp. 75-7. 

an Irish 


cannot here be fully discussed. It may, however, 
be observed, in the first place, that it would 
have been quite futile to attempt to extend 
English laws over all Ireland without having first 
established adequate machinery to enforce them. 
The laws would have been contemptuously dis- 
regarded by the Irish themselves. Sir John 
Davies in fact inverts cause and effect. Until 
the conquest was perfected it was obviously 
impossible to maintain sheriffs and enforce 
judgements in Irish districts. It was difficult 
enough to do so after the Elizabethan wars. If 
an Irishman living in an Irish district killed an 
Englishman in time of peace we may be quite 
sure that, unless caught by the English, he would 
either be not punished at all or at most be liable 
under the Brehon law to pay a fine for the 
homicide. With the Irish it was certainly no 
felony to kill an Englishman. This being so, we 
can hardly wonder that in the converse case an 
Englishman could not be hung. Again, in the 
case of Irishmen of servile condition living under 
a lord in a feudalized district, it would be un- 
reasonable to expect the Normans, at the period 
we have reached, at any rate, to grant them, as 
a body, liberties which they had not enjoyed 
under their former chieftains, and that, too, at 
a time when similar classes in England were in 
a state of serfdom. The lord of the betagh, as 
we have seen, had his remedy in damages for 


Real case any violence done to his men. There remains 
treat- then only the case of those Irishmen who had 
"^^^ ' enjoyed freedom under the Brehon laws and who 
remained in the feudalized districts. Probably 
these free-born Irishmen so remaining were not 
very numerous, and probably, too, the right to 
use English laws was granted to most of them 
individually, though here again, perhaps follow- 
ing the unfortunate precedent of the Brehon law, 
the English law ' as to life and limb ' seems not 
at first to have been included in the grant — so 
slow were the Normans to admit any class of 
Irishmen to equality with themselves.^ 

A wider experience has gradually taught the 
western world that to make a united and con- 
tented nation equal rights before the law must 
be secured to all. Such a conception was, how- 
ever, entirely beyond the ken of the statesmen 
of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, and 
indeed could not have been realized in Ireland 
without a complete conquest and a rooting up 
of old customs, which would have inevitably 
entailed, for the time at any rate, immense hard- 
ship. But had the Normans been wiser in their 
generation, they would have spared no pains to 
induce as many as possible of the free-born Irish- 
men to remain amongst them, and by good faith 

^ It was extended to them by Stat., 14 Ed. II ; Early 
Statutes, p. 292 ; cf. Rot. Glaus., 12 Hen. Ill, m. 8 ; ibid.j 
pp. 2a-4. 


and liberal treatment have won them over to 
the support of the new regime. This, indeed, 
appears to have been the idea of Giraldus.^ They 
might, we should imagine, have converted them 
into feudal owners, living in their midst, and 
thus have enormously strengthened their own 
position, and, while preserving their own more 
advanced ideas of order and government, have 
made a commencement in the amalgamation of 
the two races. But it is plain that the Normans 
regarded the Irish as an uncouth and barbarous 
people and the fit spoil of their conquerors, and 
those who guided the destinies of the colony were 
not far-seeing enough to perceive the ultimate 
effect of a half-conquest carried out in such a 

The Ostmen of the seaport towns were perhaps Treat- 
more ready than the Irish to accept the new Sie°Os*tf- 
regime, and were treated more liberally ; but in °^®"- 
their case it is obvious the same difficulties did 
not arise. In Dublin they were given a district 
to inhabit on the north side of the river, outside 
the waUs. This was long known as the villa 
Ostmannorum, Ostmantown, or (corruptly) Ox- 
mantown. In Waterford they were given a 
charter by Henry II entitling them to the law of 

^ See his condemnation of the taking away ' the lands 
of our Irishmen who had faithfully stood by us from the 
first ', vol. V, p. 390, and his opinion (p. 398) as to how 
Ireland should be governed. 


the English,^ and, perhaps after the revolt of 
1174, they were settled in a quarter of their own 
outside the town.^ Henry III took them under 
his protection, and Edward I confirmed his great- 
grandfather's charter.^ The Ostmen of Limerick, 
however, as we have seen, remained in the 
city and supplied the first mayor to the newly 
chartered town. In all cases the Ostmen seem 
to have had full rights of holding and inheriting 
property and of suing in the courts, though 
sometimes they had to prove that they were not 
Irishmen, and to petition for a recognition of 
their rights as Ostmen.'* 

The cantred of the Ostmen both at Cork and 
at Limerick was retained in the king's hand along 
with the cities. At Limerick forty carucates of 
this land were afterwards granted to the citizens 

^ A transcript of this charter is among the Carew Papers : 
Cal. Misc., p. 466. 

2 The vill of the Ostmen near Waterford is referred to 
in Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. ii, p. 426. The finding of a jury 
in 1310 as to the cause of the expulsion of the Ostmen 
of Waterford cannot, I think, be taken as correct. See 
Facsimiles Nat. MSS. of Ireland, vol. iii, Introd. vi, pi. vii, 
and App. iii, and supra, vol. i, p. 336. 

^ Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. ii, no. 2134, where Henry II's 
charter is stated to have been inspected. For Custmanni 
read Oustmanni. 

* See the petition of Philip Mac Gothmond, ' an Ostman 
and EngUshman ' of Waterford, for himself and 400 of his 
race : Cal. Docs. Ireland, vol. iii, p. 305 ; also of Maurice 
Macotere, ibid., p. 306. 


in burgage tenure.^ Most of the Ostmen men- 
tioned in the records belonged, as might be 
expected, to the towns, but some of them were 
to be found in rural parts as agriculturists. Thus 
about the year 1283 a Wexford jury found that 
there were in the time of the Marshals 100 well- 
to-do Ostmen, possessed of cattle, who had to pay 
certain dues to the provosts of Wexford for the 
lord of the liberty, and that provided they paid 
these dues they were free to hold of any lord 
in the county they chose. Some forty of these, 
reduced in wealth, survived in the time of 
William de Valence, when they were freed from 
the aforesaid burdens, and given licence to hold 
land of any lord in the county at rents and 
services proportionate to their reduced numbers 
and means. ^ 

It is quite certain then that there was no No 

^ _ , general 

general clearance of the native population. There clearance. 

P • T ^ J • n i- !• • of popula- 

is no sign oi any considerable influx ot foreigners tion. 
into the rural parts of Ireland. Land without 
inhabitants was obviously of no value to the 
Anglo-Norman lords, and it was their aim to 
retain as many of the former cultivators of the 
soil as possible. To the mass of these the Anglo- 
Norman settlement meant little more than a 

1 Rot. Chart., 17 John, p. 211. 

2 See this document transcribed in an interesting paper 
on the EngUsh and Ostmen in Ireland by E. Curtis, Eng. 
Hist. Rev. 1908, p. 217. 

1226 n Y 


change of territorial rulers. Instead of the 
exactions of their former chiefs, some small 
rents and certain services were required by their 
new lords. Some liberties might be lost, but in 
return they obtained greater security for their 
cattle and a better market for their produce. 
Though East Meath was more fully occupied by 
the foreigners than perhaps any other rural part 
of Ireland (with the possible exception of the 
parts near Dublin and the south-east corner of 
the County Wexford), and though that occupa- 
tion remained unchecked through the centuries, 
Irish continued to be the language spoken by the 
mass of the people, and in process of time even 
by some of the descendants of the foreign 
settlers, up to at least the middle of the seven- 
teenth century, and it only finally died out 
amongst the old people within living memory. 
Feuda- We have mentioned that the mote-castles of 
irdand. the first settlcrs served only a temporary mili- 
tary purpose, but as manorial centres they or 
their successors soon became the foci of new 
activities, agricultural, industrial, and com- 
mercial. Demesne lands were marked out, 
commons were set apart, in some few cases 
forests were reserved for game. Grants of lands 
were made to a number of free tenants of foreign 
birth, to be held for military service, and sub- 
ordinate manors were created. Lands were also 
let to farmers at a rent, and these were in some 


cases of Irish extraction. Improved methods of 
agriculture were introduced on the home farms. 
The manorial courts in their several degrees 
administered justice and settled disputes. Vills 
sprang up under the protection of the castles 
and grew to be towns where new industries were 
carried on, and where no doubt the foreign 
element predominated. Many of these are still 
among the chief towns of Ireland, while the 
memory of others which have entirely disappeared 
survives in persistent local tradition. Lands in 
the vicinity of the towns were divided among the 
burgesses at low fixed rents as burgage-land, and 
charters were granted to the more thriving towns 
to encourage trade and secure improvements. 
Even where the Norman mote now rises lonely 
amid the fields we often find records or traces or 
traditions of a town close at hand, and, except 
in cases where the manorial centre seems to have 
shifted at an early date, it is rare not to find the 
remains of a later castle, the ruins of a church 
with some early English features, and the evi- 
dence of an ancient mill-site, in close proximity 
to the grass-grown mound. Navigable rivers 
were now used for commerce, and not for raids, 
and were bridged in places for the same purpose. 
The Church was at the same time better organized 
and more adequately endowed, and her temples 
were re-erected on a grander scale and in the new 
transitional or, later, in the Early English style. 

y 2 


New monastic establishments were founded and 
endowed with indeed reckless profusion. Large 
sums were paid into the English exchequer, 
which, if of no benefit to Ireland, were at least 
a proof of growing wealth ; and again and again 
a feudal host was dispatched to the aid of the 
king in his wars in France, in Wales, and against 
his own revolted subjects. 

Thus in the course of two generations the whole 
face of two-thirds of Ireland became changed. 
The seaport towns in particular, most of which 
owed their origin and small beginnings to the 
Norsemen, rapidly expanded and became centres 
of a growing foreign trade. In a future work we 
hope to trace the development of this new life 
and to analyse the causes which ultimately 
checked and defeated its earlier promise. Here 
Weak it must sufficc to note two weak points in that 
the^struc- feudal organization which for the first time ren- 
ture. dered these peaceful activities possible. It did 
not extend all over Ireland within the four seas. 
It embraced in a firm grasp only the eastern 
parts of the island. It had a weaker hold on 
the south, while most of the north and west lay 
practically beyond its control. Moreover, the 
keystone of the structure was lacking, and its 
place filled by a weak substitute. The strong 
restraining hand of the Dominus Hiberniae was 
far away, and he was too fully engaged with 
other concerns, and indeed, in the person of 


King John, was not morally equipped, either 
to rule his barons with justice or to restrain 
them from harsh treatment of his Irish subjects. 
The first shock to the structure came not from 
the Gael, not even, if we go to the root of the 
matter, from the Norman barons, but from 
the alternate neglect and capricious interference 
of the Dominus Hiberniae himself. 



This map must be regarded as only a tentative 
survey. For want of space, and because they 
are of minor importance, I have not inserted all 
the true motes known to me in Leinster and 
Meath. Moreover, I have not personally in- 
spected the greater number of those marked 
throughout Ireland, and in many cases have had 
to rely on the descriptions of others. It is often 
difficult to distinguish between a mote, the forti- 
fications of which have been obliterated, and 
an ancient Celtic mound erected for sepulchral, 
ceremonial, or other purposes. It is probable, 
too, that in several cases the Norman mote 
occupies the site of an earlier Celtic fort which 
was adapted for the purpose, and this adapta- 
tion may account for some divergences from the 
normal type, especially in the plan and defences 
of the bailey or enclosure at foot. These and 
other circumstances sometimes render it doubtful 
whether we should regard a given earthwork as 
a mote or not. 

Outside the area of Eastern Ulster, Meath, 
Leinster, Tipperary, and Waterford, I have 
aimed at marking all earthworks which should 
be regarded as belonging to the type in question. 
In some of these districts, especially in parts of 
Mayo, Galway, and Roscommon, there are a 
few earthworks which appear from early Anglo- 
Norman times to have been called motes, but 
they are distinguishable in type as not contain- 
ing a high enclosed mound. They generally 
consist of a rectangular platform, sometimes 
artificially or naturally raised a few feet, and 
surrounded by ditches and ramparts rectangular 


in plan. Though from their features and sites, 
taken in connexion with the data of history, they 
appear to be Norman or English works, they are 
distinct in type from the high motes, and were 
probably formed at a later period, under different 
conditions, and with a somewhat different object. 
I have accordingly not included them. 

With the above qualifications and explana- 
tions the map shows with, I think, substantial 
accuracy the distribution of motes in Ireland, 
and this distribution, apart from other evidences, 
seems to offer a conclusive proof of their Norman 
origin. They are found thickly scattered through- 
out the lordships of Meath, Leinster, and Ulster, 
at the chief manorial seats. There are some fine 
examples, also at early manorial centres, in 
Southern Tipperary, and a few in other parts of 
the south of Ireland. In all Comiaught there 
are only a very few rather degraded examples, 
while in the districts to which the Normans did 
not penetrate there are, so far as is known, none 
at all. Even in Leinster and Meath the areas 
to which the Irish tribes appear to have been 
confined show no motes. The map, therefore, 
incidentally serves not only to indicate the general 
area of Norman domination about the close of 
the reign of King John, but also to mark nearly 
all the more important centres of manors and 
sub-manors formed at that period. 

For some of the evidence of Norman mote- 
building in Ireland, and for a description of 
a mote, see supra, vol. i, pp. 338-43 ; and for 
further evidence on the subject, and references 
to the writings of others, consult the papers 
mentioned in the note to p. 342o In chapters xi 
and XV, and elsewhere, allusion has been made 
to many of the motes marked on the map. 


Abbeylara or Larha, Leth-rdith, 

Aberteivi (Cardigan), i 97, 253. 

Adam, camerarius of J. de 
Courcy, ii 23. 

Adare, Aih-dara, ii 169. 

Adrian IV, Pope, his so-called 
Bull 'Laudabiliter', i 80, 82, 
278, cap. ix ; translation of the 
text, 294-7. 

Affreca, w. of J. de Courcy, ii 19, 
21, 144. 

Aghaboe, Achadh-hd, i 388-9 ; 
text of Strongbow's grant of, 
394 ; ii 227, 232. 

Ail ward juvenis, ' the king's 
merchant,' i 274. 

Aldelm, Adelelmus Dives of 
Bristol, i 272 and note. 

Alemannus, ' the German,' Wal- 
ter, ii 7. 

Alexander III, Pope, his confir- 
mation of Adrian's Privilege, 
i 297 and cap. ix passim ; his 
letters (1172), 301-6 ; confirms 
possessions of Dublin and Glen- 
dalough, ii 58. 

Antrim Castle, ii 20, 260. 

Ardbraccan, Tioprait Ultdin, ii 
84, 249. 

Ardee, Ath Fir-diad, ii 122-4. 

Ardfinan, i 261 note ; ii 98, 99, 

Ardglas, ii 253-4. 

Ardmayle, Ard-mdille, castle of, 
ii 318. 

Ardnurcher, Ath - an - urchair, 
castle of, ii 89, 128, 214, 303. 

Ardpatrick, ii 166. 

Ardri, now Ardi-ee, i 384. 

ard-ri, ' high-king,' his authority, 
i 23 ; his office the spoil of the 
strongest, 36 ; co fressabhra, 37. 

Argentan, in Normandy, Henry's 
council at, i 248, 250. 

Arklow, i 371, 380 note ; ii 203 

Armagh, council at (1170), i 216 

expedition to, ii 92, 93 note 

plundered, 117. Book of 

Candin Phatruic, i 30 note ; ii 

Armagh, archbishops of, Celsus, 

Cellach, i 43 ; Gelasius, Gilla 

Mac Liag, i 52, 62, 63, 275. 
Arsic, Manasser, ii 223. 
Askeaton, Eas Geibhtine, castle 

of, ii 163, 193 ; church of, 164. 
Athady, Ath fadat, now Aghade, 

cell of, i 72. 
Athassel, Ath-an-tuisel, priory 

of, ii 166. 
Athiis, Gerard de, ii 237 and note. 
Athlone, Ath-luain, ii 129, 155, 

183, 281-3, 285, 304. 
Athol, Thomas, earl of, called 

Thomas Mac Uchtry, ii 291-2. 
Auters, Robert and Thomas des, 

de Altaribus, ii 45. 
Ays, now Mount Ash near Louth, 

ii 125. 

Bachall Isa, ' Staff of Jesus,' 

Baginbun, site of Raymond's 

camp, see Dundonnell. 
Balimoran, now Ballymorran, 

ii 260. 
Bally loughloe, Baile locha luatha, 

ii 297. 
Ballymaghan, castle of, ii 260. 
Baltinglas, Belach conglais, 

monasterium de Valle Salutis, 

founded by Dermot, i 72 ; 

charter confirmed by John, 

ii 103. 
Bannow, Cuan an bhainbh, i 149 ; 

ii 231. 
Barham Down, muster at (1213), 

ii 311. 



Barry, Gerald de, one of the 
chief authorities for the inva- 
sion, i 8 ; his parents, 96 ; his 
chief sources of information, 
132 ; his account of the social 
state of Ireland, 133-40 ; visits 
Ireland (1183), ii 41 ; attests 
documents, ibid, note, 92 note ; 
accompanies John to Ireland 
(1185), 94 ; his account of the 
causes of John's failure, 96-7, 
106-8 ; remains in Ireland 
after John's departure, 121. 

Barry, Philip de, b. of Gerald, ii 
41, 43. 

Barry, Robert de, b. of Gerald, 
i 145, 154, 178. 

Barry, William de, s. of Philip, 
ii 44. 

Basilia, sister of Strongbow, see 

Beg-erin, Beg-Eri, i 234. 

Bermingham, Eva de, w. of 
Geoffrey Fitz Robert, ii 211 

Bermingham, Robert de, i 381. 

Betaghs, hibernici, nativi, ii 

Bigarz, Robert de, i 383 note, 

Birr, castle of, ii 296, 304. 

' Black Monday,' ii 241. 

Blinding, the, of rivals and 
hostages, i 58-60. 

Bluet, or Bloet, Thomas, ii 49 

Bluet, Walter, i 182, 226. 

Bohun, Humphrey de, i 256, 281. 

Boisrohard, Gilbert de, i 390. 

Boyle, Buill, ii 190. 

Braose, Philip de, one of the 
custodes of Wexford (1171), i 
281 ; kingdom of Limerick 
granted to, ii 33 ; fails to take 
possession, 38. 

Braose, William de (1), accom- 
panied Henry to Ireland, i 256, 

Braose, William de (2), s. of 
Wm. (1), Honour of Limerick 
granted to him, ii 172 ; grants 
to Theo. Walter the lands pre- 
viously given to him by John, 

174 ; conflict with Ph. of 
Worcester, 175 ; custody of 
Limerick given to him, 176 ; 
and forcibly taken from him, 
177 ; escapes from the ^\Tath of 
John to Ireland, 236 ; is shel- 
tered by Wm. Marshal, 239 ; 
his chastisement John's object 
in coming to Ireland, 240 ; dies 
an exile in France, 259. 

Braose, Matilda de, w. of Wm. 
(2), refuses hostages to John, 
ii 236 ; is captured, 256 ; and 
starved to death, 258. 

Braose, William de (3), s. of 
Wm. (2), ii 256, 258. 

Braose, Reginald, s. of Wm. (2), 
ii 256. 

Breffny, Breifne, i 22. 

Brehon laws, i 104-32. 

Bret, Milo le, ii 264 note. 

Breteuil, the law of, granted 
to Dungarvan, ii 315, and to 
Drogheda, 316. 

Brian Borumha, i 30. 

Brien, perhaps for ui Briuin 
Cualann, granted to W. de 
Ridelisford, i 369. 

Bristol, Dermot goes to, i 77-8, 
85 ; Dublin granted to men of, 

Bristol, the law of, granted to 
Trim and Kells, ii 126 ; to Cork, 
315 ; to Rathcoole, Ballymore, 
and Holy wood, 316. 

Buildwas, Ralph, abbot of, i 275, 
293 ; Dunbrody granted to 
monastery of, i 323. 

Burgh, William de, mote of 
Kilfeacle erected for, ii 146 ; 
his land at Ardoyne near Tul- 
low, 147 ; married d. of Donnell 
O'Brien, 148 ; alliance with 
Donnell's sons, 152 ; receives 
a grant of lands in Conn'aught 
from John, 156 ; attacks the 
Eugenians in Munster, 160 ; 
his lands in counties Tipperary 
and Limerick, 166-8 ; holds 
inquisition as to see of Limerick, 
171 ; makes C. Carragh king of 
Connaught (1200), 186 ; makes 
C. Crovderg king (1202), 190 ; 



his troops massacred in 
Connaught, 191 ; invades Con- 
naught (1203), ibid. ; disseised 
and summoned by John, 192 ; 
his lands, except Connaught, re- 
stored, 193; dies, 194 ; wTongly 
identified with Wm. Fitz 
Audelin, 195 ; cf. p. 7 note. 

Burgh, Hubert de, b. of Wm., 
ii 146. 

Burgh, Richard de, s. of Wm., 
ii 318. 

Burgh, Hubert de, s. of Wm., 
ii 194 note. 

Callan, ii 226, 232. 

Canthordis, abbot of St. Bran- 
don, i 349. 

Caoluisce, castle of, ii 289, 293. 

Capella, Richard de, ii 87. 

Carbury, Ui Cairbre, co. Kildare, 
i 378. 

Carew, castle of, i 96. 

Carew, Odo de, brother of Ray- 
mond le Gros, ii 47. 

Carew, Robert de, ii 47 note, 48. 

Carew, William de, nephew of 
Raymond le Gros, i 387. 

Carlingford, cairlinn, castle of, 
ii 251, 261. 

Carlo w, i 374 ; ii 231. 

Carrick (in Scotland), Duncan 6f, 
ii 134, 256, 267, 291. 

Carrick on Slaney, Fitz Stephen's 
castle at, i 177, 232-3 ; to^vn of, 
ii 231. 

Carrickfergus, castle of, ii 255, 

Carrickittle. Carraic Cital, castle 
of, ii 165. 

Carrigogunnell, Cafraic OgCoin- 
neall, castle of, probably same 
as ' Castle of Esclon ', ii 168 
note, 244. 

Cashel, Caisel, council of, i 274—7, 
293; Strongbowat,333;thepass 
of (perhaps the ' pass of Cumsy ' 
leading from Ossory), 353. 

Cashel, archbishop of, Donatus 
or Donnell O'Huallaghan, i 261, 

Castlecomer, an Comar, mote of, 
i 376 ; ii 232. 

Castleconnell, Caislen uiConaing, 

ii 167. 
Castledermot, called Tristerder- 

mot for Disert Diarmata, i 386 ; 

ii 213 and note. 
Castlefranc, now the mote of 

Castlering, co. Louth, ii 125. 
Castleguard, mote near Ardee, 

ii 122. 
Castleknock, Cnucha, O'Conor's 

camp at, i 224, 229 ; Hugh 

Tyrel's mote at, ii 83. 
Castlemore, mote of, Raymond's 

castle, i 387. 
Castleskreen, ii 15 note, 19. 
Castletown-Delvin, mote of, de 

Nugent castle, ii 87. 
Castletown-Dundalk, mote of, de 

Verdun Castle, ii 120, 251. 
Castles, not used by the Irish, 

i 139-40. For Norman castles 

see the various place-names and 

' motes '. 
Churches, used for storing food, 

ii 25-8, 195-8, 306. 
Church property, favourable 

treatment of, i 273 ; ii 119, 171, 

Cilgerran Castle, near Cardigan, 

i 97, 253. 
Cinel Connell, Cenel Conaill, 

122, 266; ii 116. 
Cinel Owen, Cenel Eoghain, i 22, 

53, 266; ii 67, 116, 135. 
Clahul, John de, Strongbow's 

marshal, i 366, 385. 
Clahul, Hugh de, first prior of 

Kilmainham, i 365. 
Clane, Claenad, synod of, i 62 ; 

barony of Otymy, 379. 
Clare, Richard de, see Striguil, 

earl of. 
Clare, Isabel de, ii 5, 133, 201-2, 

Clare, Basilia de, sister of Strong- 
bow, i 323, 334, 336, 356, 387 ; 

ii 211 note. 
Clares, the, in Wales, i 85-90. 
Clmton, Hugh de, ii 124. 
Clonard, Cluain Irdird, castle of, 

ii 66, 76 ; priory of, 77 ; 

Eugene, bishop of, ibid. 
Cloncurry, Cluain Conaire, i 379. 



Clondalkin, Cluain Dolcan, i 209, 

Clone, castle of, i 390. 

Clones, Cluain-eois, castle of, 
ii 290, 293. 

Clonmacnois, castle of, ii 303, 
305 ; Dervorgil's church at, 
i 58. 

Clontarf, Cluain-tarbh, battle of 
(1014), 1 28 ; Henry's grant of, 
to Templars, 274 note. 

Cogan, Miles de, at taking of 
Dublin, i 211 ; left there as 
custos, 217 ; besieged there, 
226; defeats O'Rourke, 240; 
and Haskulf, 240-4 ; attached 
to Henry's household, 279 ; 
returns with Fitz Audelin, ii 6 ; 
invades Connaught, 26-7 ; re- 
called, 28 ; granted a moiety of 
the kingdom of Cork, 32 ; slain, 
40 ; cantreds assigned to, 45 ; 
devolution of his moiety, 49-50. 

Cogan, Richard de, b. of Miles, 
i 243 ; ii 41, 45. 

Cogan, Margarite de, d. of Miles, 
married to Ralph Fitz Stephen, 
ii 40 ; supposed marriage with 
a de Courcy, 49-50 and note. 

Coibche, a nuptial gift also used 
for a nuptial contract, i 127-9. 

Coillacht, ii 71. 

Coleraine, Cuil-ratliain, castle of, 
ii 19, 292. 

Colp, cell of, ii 79. 

Cork, i 261 ; ii 32, 38, 41. 

Costentin, Geoffrey de, ii 88, 189, 
190, 284. 

Counties, formation of, a gradual 
process, ii 275-7. 

Courcy, John de, comes to Ire- 
land with Fitz Audelin (1176), 
ii 6 ; supposed grant to, of 
Ulster, 9 ; his description, ibid. ; 
takes Downpatrick, 10 ; battle 
there, 12 ; erects a mote there, 
13 ; his five battles, 14-15 ; 
his marriage, 19 ; his mote- 
castles, 19-20 ; his religious 
foundations, 20-2 ; his house- 
hold officers, 23 ; appointed 
justiciar (1185-6), ii 107, 110; 
expedition to Connaught (1188), 

115-16; negotiates peace with 
C. Crovderg (1195), 134, 155; 
assists C. Crovderg (1201), 136, 
187 ; arrested and released, 
138, 189 ; defeated by H. de 
Lacy, 139 ; his lands given to 
H. de Lacy, 140 ; attempts to 
recover his lands, 141 ; legend 
concerning him, 142 note ; 
subsequent notices, 142-3 ; ef- 
fect of his rule in Ulster, 144 ; 
sent to fetch the de Braose 
prisoners, 256 and note. 

Courcy, Jordan de, brother of 
John, ii 134. 

Courcy, Patrick de, ii 47 note, 49. 

Courcy, Roger de, John's con- 
stable, ii 23. 

Craville, Thomas de, ii 78, 89. 

Cridarim, perhaps Crich Dairine, 
i. e. Rosscarbery, ii 46. 

Crook, landing-place near Water- 
ford, i 193, 243, 255 ; granted 
to the Templars, 274 note. 

Croom, Cromadh, ii 165. 

Cross, la Croix, Crux, place of 
embarkation near Pembroke, 
i 255 and note ; ii 243. 

Crown lands, i 258-9, 367-70; 
ii 132. 

Crown Rath, near Newry, ii 20. 

Crumlin, Cromghlenn, royal 
manor near Dublin, i 370. 

Cuailgne, Cooley, Lr. Dundalk, 
ii 15 note, 251, 252 note. 

Cursun, Vivien de, i 370. 

Daingean Bona Cuilinn, now 
Dangan, p. of Kilmore, co. 
Roscommon, i 55. 

Dalkey (a Norse name), i 224. 

Dalriada, the northern part of 
CO. Antrim, ii 18. 

Deece, barony of, co. Meath, Deist 
Temrach, ii 85. 

Dengyn, now Dangan, co. Meath, 
ii 258. 

Dervorgil, Derbforgaill, w. of 
T. O'Rourke, elopes with Dcr- 
mot, i 55 ; returns to O'Rourke, 
67 ; her gifts to Mellifont, ibid. ; 
retires to Mellifont and dies, 58. 

Desmond, Des-mumain, the 



' kingdom of Cork ', i 23 ; ii 

Dissert, now Dysart, W. Meath, 

dominus, distinguished from rex, 
ii 31 note, 205. 

Donaghadee, mote of, ii 20. 

Donaghmoyne, Domhnach Maig- 
hen, castle of, ii 123. 

Downings, p., co. Kildare, i 379. 

Dun-dd-lethglas, taken by J. de 
Courcy, ii 10 ; battle at, 12 ; 
church of, 20 ; K. John at, 255, 

Drogheda, Drochait-dtha, mote- 
castle at, ii 79, 119, 261. 

Dromiskin, Druim-inesdainn, ii 
119, 125. 

Dromore, mote of, ii 20 ; and see 
Magh Cobha. 

Dublin, Dubhlinn (Norse, Dyflin) 
or Baile-atha-cliath, first Nor- 
man expedition against, i 176 ; 
the Scandinavian town, 203-4 ; 
in communion with Canterbury, 
205 ; relations with Irish kings, 
206-8 ; taken by Strongbow, 
211 ; besieged by O' Conor, 
223-30; assaulted by O'Rourke, 
239-40 ; and by Haskulf, 240- 
4 ; date of Haskulf s attack, 
245-6 ; Henry's palace in, 267 ; 
first charter, 268 ; first citizen- 
roll, 270-2; synod at (1177), 
311 ; charter of 1192, ii 129 ; 
K. John at, 246, 264 ; and see 
' Ostmen of Dublin '. 

Dublin, archbishops of, Dunan 
or Donatus, i 205 ; Laurence, 
Lorcan ua Tuathail (1162- 
81), i 63, 223, 227, 275, 349, 
358,369; ii56-9; John Cumin 
or Comyn (1181-1212), elected, 
ii 59 ; constitutes St. Patrick's 
a collegiate church, 62 ; his 
palace of St. Sepulchre, 64 ; 
his conflict with Hamo de 
Valognes, 131 ; Henri de Lon- 
dres, archdeacon of Stafford, 
elected (1212), ii 63 ; appointed 
justiciar, 300 ; builds castle 
at Roscrea, 301 ; completes 

Dublin Castle, 308 ; raises St. 
Patrick's to a cathedral church 
(1219), 63. 

Dublin, castle of, in existence in 
Strongbow's time, i 370 ; a 
strong castle built, ii 306-9. 

Dublin, churches of, the cathe- 
dral of the Holy Trinity or 
Christ Church, i 361-4; its 
chapel of St. Edmund, 363 
note ; its chapel of St. Mary, 
' called Alba ', i. e. of Alba 
Landa, 366 note ; St. Patrick's 
Cathedral, ii 62-4; St. Andrew's, 
i 267 ; St. Mary del Dam, i 242, 
370; St. Mary's Abbey (Qs- 
tercian), i 327, 328 note, 369; 
St. Thomas the Martyr, Abbey 
of, ii 29, 105, 246 ; All Hallows 
Priory, i 72, 273 ; St. Mary 
de Hogges, nunnery of, i 72 ; 
other churches c. 1178, ii 57 

Duffry, the, Dubh-tkire, i 168, 
237, 322, 390. 

Duiske, Dubh-uisge, see Graig-na- 

Duleek, Damhliac, castle of, i 
344 ; ii 78, 261. 

Dullard, Adam, ii 78, 248. 

Dunamase, Dun Masc, i 375, 
382 ; ii 217, 232, 265, 317. 

Dunbrody, Monasterium de 
Portu, i 323-5. 

Dundalk, see Castletown-Dun- 

Dundonald, castle of, ii 260. 

Dundonnell, Dun Domhnaill, 
now Baginbun, Raymond land^ 
at, i 183 ; and forms a camp, 
184 ; battle at, 185-8. 

Dundrum, castle of, called ' cas- 
trum de Rath,' ii 20, 123, 141, 

Dungarvan, i 350 ; ii 315. 

Dunleckny, i 387. 

Durrow, Dermagh, castle of, 
ii 67, 304. 

Ely, Eile, divided into Ely 
O' Carroll and Ely O'Fogarty 
(Eliogarty), ii 175 note, 294-6, 



enecJi-lann or log-enech, honour- 
price, i 121, 142. 

Enniscorthy, castle of, i 391. 

eric, composition for murder, i 
52, 120, 172. 

Erlee (Erlegh), John de, ii 200, 
209 note, 211, 212, 221, 226. 

Erleystown, Earlstown, co. Kil- 
kenny, ii 226. 

Esclon, Aes cluana, ii 167. 

Esgrene, Aes greine, ii 170. 

Esker, royal manor near DubUn, 
i 370. 

Evreux, Stephen de, ii 211, 212. 

Faithlegg, i 274. 

Feipo, Adam de, ii 85. 

Feipo, Richard de, ii 248. 

Fernegenal, Ferann-na-Cenel, i 

Ferns, Ferna-m6r, i 66, 69, 155, 
161, 221, 390 ; ii 7, 231. 

Ferrard, Fir-arda, ii il9, 122 

Fid dorcha, probably ' the Leve- 
rocke ' near Clonegal, i 66, 141. 

Fircal, Fir-cell, ii 214, 284, 296. 

Fir-Li', ii 15, 17. 

Fitz Alured, John, Thomas, and 
Walter, ii 258-9. 

Fitz Anthony, Thomas, ii 211, 
226, 245, 318. 

Fitz Audelin, William, Henry's 
dapifer, i 256 ; receives 0' Co- 
nor's submission, 264 ; custos 
of Wexford, 281 ; letter of 
credence to, 289 ; transcript 
and date of same, 313-4 ; 
publishes ' LaudabiUter ', 294 ; 
inquisition as to lands of St. 
Mary's Abbey, 327 ; appointed 
procurator, ii 6 ; wTongly iden- 
tified with W. de Burgh, 7 note 
(cf. p. 195) ; recalled, 28; given 
custody of Wexford, 35. 

Fitz Bernard, Robert, i 256, 263, 
281, 327. 

Fitz Fulk, Richard, ii 223. 

Fitz Gerald, Alexander, s. of 
Maurice (1), i 227 note ; ii 45. 

Fitz Gerald, David, bishop of 
St. David's, s. of Gerald of 
Windsor, i 98, 99, 254. 

Fitz Gerald, Gerald, s. of Maurice 
(1), i 227 note, 380; ii 104, 165. 

Fitz Gerald, Henry, follower of 
Wm. Marshal, ii 220. 

Fitz Gerald, Maurice ( 1 ), s. of 
Gerald of Windsor, his agree- 
ment with Dermot, i 98 ; comes 
to Ireland, 174 ; leads expedi- 
tion to Dublin, 177 ; is besieged 
in Dublin, 226 ; left in garri- 
son at Dublin, 281 ; Naas and 
Wicklow granted to him, 379 ; 
dies, ii 7. 

Fitz Gerald, Maurice (2), s. of 
Gerald, ii 319. 

Fitz Gerald, Miles, s. of David, 
the bishop, i 99 ; lands in Ire- 
land, 145 ; besieged in Dublin, 
226 ; in garrison at Dublin, 
281 ; custos of Limerick, 349 ; 
Iverk granted to him, 389. 

Fitz Gerald, Thomas, s. of 
Maurice (1), ii 164, 199, 248, 

Fitz Gerald, WilUam (1), called 
'of Carew', s. of Gerald of 
Windsor, i 96, 332. 

Fitz Gerald, William (2), baron 
of Naas, s. of Maurice (1), i 380 ; 
ii 104, 165. 

Fitz Gerald, William (3), baron 
of Naas, son of William (2), ii 

Fitz Geralds or Geraldines, de- 
scendants of Gerald of Windsor, 
see Table of Descendants of 
Nest, i 18. 

Fitz Godebert, Richard, i 141 : 

Fitz Godebert, Robert, i 391. 

Fitz Harding, Robert, reeve of 
Bristol, i 77-8, 80, 85. 

Fitz Henry, Meiler, his parent- 
age, i 95; lands in Ireland, 145; 
description, 147 ; aids O'Brien, 
178 ; besieged in Dublin, 226 ; 
in garrison at Dublin, 281 ; 
at taking of Limerick, 348 ; 
granted Carbury, 378 ; and 
Leix, 381-2 ; marries niece of 
H. de Lacy, ii 65 ; granted 
Ardnurcher, 89 ; justiciar (1199 
-1208), 114; his dispute with 



W. de Braose and W. de Lacy, 
176-7 ; and wdth W. de Burgh, 
192-3 ; his intrigue with K. 
John against Wm. Marshal, 
209-15 ; superseded, 217 ; his 
deficiencies as a ruler, 279-80. 

Fitz Henry, Meiler, s. of Meiler, 
ii 177. 

Fitz Henry, Robert, b. of Meiler, 

Fitz Hugh, Alexander and Ray- 
mond, ii 45. 

Fitz Pain, Ralph, ii 215. 

Fitz Richard, Robert, baron of 
the Norragh, i 383. 

Fitz Robert, Geoffrey, baron of 
Kells, ii 170, 211, 225, 265, 266. 

Fitz Robert, Richard, seneschal 
of J. de Courcy, ii 23. 

Fitz Stephen, Robert, his parent- 
age and arrangement with 
Dermot, i 97-8 ; lands at 
Bannow, 145 ; description, 147; 
assaults Wexford, 153 ; forms 
a fastness in the DuflFry, 168 ; 
assists O'Brien, 178 ; besieged 
and taken prisoner at Carrick, 
232-4 ; brought in chains before 
K. Henry, 259 ; released, 262 ; 
in garrison at Dublin, 281 ; 
summoned by Henry, 327 ; 
joined in commission with Fitz 
Audelin, ii 6 ; recalled, 28 ; is 
granted a moiety of the king- 
dom of Cork, 32 ; rising there 
against him, 41 ; his grantees, 
43-5 ; devolution of his moiety, 

Fitz Stephen, Ralph, s. of Robert, 
ii 40. 

Fitz Warin, Fulk, ii 295. 

Fitz William, Alard, John's 
chamberlain, ii 94, 105 note. 

Fitz William, Raymond, nick- 
named ' le Gros ', sent to Ire- 
land by Strongbow, i 181 ; 
description of, 182 ; attacked 
at Dundormell, 183-8 ; joins 
Strongbow at assault of Water- 
ford, 193 ; at taking of Dublin, 
211 ; sent by Strongbow to 
K.Henry, 218; besieged in Dub- 
lin, 227 ; attached to Henry's 

household, 279 ; is refused 
Strongbow' s sister and leaves 
Ireland, 323 ; sent as coadjutor 
to Strongbow, 326 ; raids Offe- 
lan and Lismore, 329 ; goes to 
Wales on his father's death, 
332 ; returns to Strongbow's 
aid, 335 ; marries Basilia, 336 ; 
captures Limerick, 345-9 ; is 
recalled, 352 ; relieves Limer- 
ick, 353 ; parleys with O' Conor 
and with O'Brien, 354 ; receives 
news of Strongbow's death, 
356 ; evacuates Limerick, 357: 
is granted Forth, Idrone, and 
Glascarrig, 387 ; appointed pro- 
curator, ii 5 ; is superseded by 
W. Fitz Audelin, 6 ; assists 
Fitz Stephen in Cork, 41 ; un 
certainty as to date of his death, 
42 ; succeeds to the inheritance 
of Fitz Stephen, 47. 

Fitz William, Griffin, b. of Ray- 
mond, i 18. 

Fleming, Richard le, baron of 
Slane, i 340 ; ii 84. 

Fleming, Thomas le, i 383 note, 

Flemish element among the 
settlers, i 396-8. 

Fore, Fablmr, i 320 ; ii 81, 258. 

Forth, b., CO. Carlo w, Fotharfa 
ui Nualldin, i 163, 387 ; ii 

Forth, b., CO. Wexford, Fotharta 
an Chairn, colonized largely by 
Flemings, i 373 ; peculiar dia- 
lect of, 397. 

Fosterage, custom of, i 130. 

Fretellus, governor of Waterf ord, 

Galloway, Alan, s. of Roland, 

earl of, ii 290, 292. 
Galtrim, Calatruim, castle of, ii 

Gerald of Windsor, i 95-6. 
Gernon, Ralph, ii 125. 
Gilbert, s. of Turgerius, Ostman 

of Cork, i 330. 
Giraldus Cambrensis, see Barry, 

Gerald de. 



Gisors, frontier fortress in Nor- 
mandy, i 325. 

Glanville, Ranulf de, i 256 ; ii 
93, 95, 100 note. 

Glascarrig, i 387. 

Glendalough, i 209, 369, see of, 
united with Dublin, ii 61-2, 
71-3 ; Laurence O'Toole, abbot 
of, i 63 ; Thomas, abbot of, ii 
71 ; William Piro, last bishop 
of, ii 72. 

Godebert, a Fleming of Rhos 
near Haverford, i 392. 

Graig - na - managh, Oraig - na- 
mbreathnach (so named from the 
Welsh colonists, Hogan's Ono- 
masticon), or Duiske (Black- 
water), ii 230. 

Granard, castle of, ii 87, 128, 262. 

Gray, John de, see Norwich, 
bishop of. 

Greenoge, ii 247. 

Gundeville, Hugh de, i 256, 281. 

Hackett, William, ii 23, 

Hadeshore (Hadsor), Geoffrey 
de, ii 124. 

Haskulf, s. of Raghnall, s. of 
Thorkill, k. of Dublin, i 208 ; 
driven out of Dublin by Strong- 
bow, 211 ; attempts to recover 
the town, 240 ; death, 244. 

Hastings, Philip de, i 281. 

Henry II, Dermot's interview 
with, i 81 ; gives licence to his 
subjects to aid Dermot, 84 ; his 
equivocal licence to Strongbow, 
181 ; forbids Strongbow's ex- 
pedition, 193 ; recalls the in- 
vaders, 217 ; prepares expedi- 
tion to Ireland, 249 ; receives 
Strongbow's submission in 
Wales, 250 ; shows favour to 
Rhys, 252-3 ; receives deputa- 
tion from Wexford, 254 ; lands 
at Crook, 255 ; his army and 
its supplies, 257 ; receives 
Strongbow's homage for Lein- 
ster, 258 ; imprisons Fitz Ste- 
phen, 259 ; goes to Lismore, 
260 ; to Cashel, 261 ; to Dublin 
263 ; receives submission of 
Irish kings, 264-5 ; except the 

northern chiefs, 266 ; his palace 
at Dublin, 267 ; his charter to 
Dublin, 268 ; to All Hallows, 
273 ; to Ailward juvenis, 274 ; 
to the Templars, 274 note ; 
summons council of the clergy 
at Cashel, 275 ; grants Meath 
to H. do Lacy, 279, 285-6; 
final arrangements, 281 ; leaves 
Ireland, 282 ; results of his 
visit, 283-4 ; takes Strongbow 
into favour, 326 ; treaty with 
Rory O'Conor, 349-50 ; recalls 
Raymond, 352 ; creates his son 
John dominus Hiberniae, ii 31 ; 
his grants of Cork and Limerick, 
32 ; is displeased with H. de 
Lacy, 54, 66 ; sends John to 
Ireland, 93 ; appoints J. de 
Courcy chief governor, 107, 
110; promises Isabel de Clare 
to W. Marshal, ii 201. 

For Henry and the papal Privi- 
legia, see cap. ix. 

Hereford, Adam de, i 330, 379, 
388, 394. 

Hereford, Thomas de, married 
Beatrice Walter, ii 95 note. 

' Hochenil,' Ui Conaill, Connello, 
CO. Limerick, ii 157. 

Hogges (hoga, howe), an arti- 
ficial mound on the Steine out- 
side DubUn, i 242 ; nunnery of 
St. Mary of, i 72. 

Holywood, sanctum nemus, co. 
Down, ii 20, 260. 

Holywood, CO. Wicklow, ii 316. 

Hose (Hussey), Hugh de, ii 85, 
247 note. 

Howth, Benn Edair, confirmed 
to Almaric de St. Laurent, i 
370 ; legend of Evora bridge at, 
ii 16. 

Howth, Book of, ii 12 note, 16, 
17 note, 112 note, 114 note. 

Iniskeen, Inis Cain Dega, co. 

Louth, ii 119. 
Inistioge, Inis-teoc, priory of, ii 

226; mote of, 245. 
Inishcourcy, Inis-cumhscraidh, 

Cistercian monastery at, ii 21. 
Inis Teimle or Inis Doimle, now 



called ' Little Island ', near 
Waterford, i 335. 

Ireland in the tribal state, i 20-3, 
25 ; causes of backward de- 
velopment, 26 ; physical aspect 
in the twelfth century, 101-3 ; 
social customs of, 104-40 ; 
treatment of the Irish in the 
feudalized districts of, ii 326-35, 

Iverk, Uibh Eire, i 389. 

Jerpoint abbey, de Jeriponte 
(where ' Jeri ' perhaps repre- 
sents a latinized form of Eoir, 
the river Nore), ii 224 note. 

John, s. of Henry II, created 
dominus Hiberniae, ii 31 ; 
knighted and sent to Ireland 
(1185), 93 ; insolent treatment 
of Irish chiefs, 96 ; aggres- 
sive policy, 97 ; his grant of 
Ormond, 102 ; his movements 
in Ireland, 103 ; results of his 
visit, 105 ; causes of its failure, 
106-8 ; his grants in co. Louth, 
118-19 ; his treatment of John 
de Courcy, 136-43 ; his grant 
of Connaught as Earl of Mor- 
tain to W. de Burgh, 156 ; his 
grant of six cantreds in Con- 
naught to H. de Lacy, 187 ; his 
charter to Limerick, 157 ; his 
grants as king in the kingdom 
of Limerick, 162-72 ; grants 
the honour of Limerick to W. de 
Braose, 172 ; consequences of 
this grant, 174 ; tergiversation 
as to custody of Limerick, 176- 
7 ; forced to give seisin of 
Leinster to W. Marshal, 203 ; 
reluctantly gives him leave to 
go to Ireland, 208 ; intrigues 
with Meiler against him, 209 ; 
summons William and Meiler, 
210 ; summons William's chief 
men, 212 and note ; takes Wil- 
liam and the de Lacys into 
favour and dismisses Meiler, 
216-17; reservations in the new 
charters of Leinster and Meath, 
233-4 ; his apology for his 

(treatment of W. de Braose, 
237-8, 241, 257 ; his motive in 

1226 II 

coming to Ireland (1210), 240 ; 
his itinerary in Ireland, 243- 
65 ; grants Carrigogunnell to 
O'Brien, 244 ; and Ratoath to 
Ph. of Worcester, 248 ; makes a 
pontoon bridge near Carlingford, 
253 ; seizes four of Cathal's 
men as hostages, 264 ; accuses 
W. Marshal and exacts hos- 
tages, 265 ; his wholesale con- 
fiscations, 266-7 ; his Irish 
auxiliaries, 268 ; results of his 
expedition, 269 ; his title to the 
credit of extensive administra- 
tive reforms examined, 270-7 ; 
orders the building of a castle 
at Dublin, 307 ; his letter 
thanking W. Marshal, 310 ; his 
surrender to the Pope, 312 ; 
beneficial charters and grants, 
314-19 ; character of his rule 
in Ireland, 319-21. 

John ' the Wode ' assists Has- 
kulf, i 240-4. 

Justices in eyre, ii 274. 

Justiciars or chief governors, list 
of, i 15-17. 

Kavanagh, Donnell, Domhnall 
Caemanach, s. of Dermot Mc 
Murrough, i 73, 159, 163, 166, 
223 ; appointed seneschal of the 
Irish of Leinster by Strongbow, 
238 ; killed, 239. 

Kedeville, Reinalt de, first senes- 
chal of W. Marshal, ii 203 ; play 
on his name, 204 note, 

Kells, CO. Meath, Cenannus, 1214; 
ii 77, 249, 261. 

Kells, CO. Kilkenny, mote and 
priory of, ii 225. 

Kilbixy, Cell Bicsighe, castle of, 
ii 88, 128. 

Kilculliheen, nunnery of, i 389. 

Kildare, Cdl-dara, i 374, 381 ; 
ii 104, 232. 

Kildrought, Cell-droichit, now 
Celbridge, i 379. 

Kilfeacle, Cell fiacla, mote of, ii 
146, 166. 

Kalkea, mote of, i 386. 

Kilkenny, Cell Cainnigh, town 
and castle, i 175, 332, 376 ; i 



222, 225, 246 ; bishops of, Felix 
O'Dulany and Hugh le Rous 
(Rufus), ii 227 note ; the 
cathedral, 228-9. 

Killaloe, Cdl-da-lua, church of 
St. Flannan, i .31 note ; bishop 
of, Conor O'Heyne, ii 302. 

Killare, Cell-fair, castle of, ii 60, 
80, 127. 

Killeedy, co. Limerick, Cell-Ite, 
granted to Philip de Barry, ii 
44 and note. 

Killeshin, mote of, i 386. 

Kilmainham, Cell Maighnenn, 
i 224 ; Hospital of St. John of 
Jerusalem founded by Strong- 
bow at, 365. 

Kilnagrann, Coill - na - gcrann, 
battles at, 297, 298. 

Kilsantain or Kilsantail, now 
Mount Sandell near Coleraine, 
castle of, ii 19, 135, 292. 

Kilsheelan, Cell Sildin, manor of, 
ii 166. 

Kiltinan, Cell Teimhnein, castle 
of, ii 318. 

Kinclare, Cenn Chldir, castle of, 
ii 303. 

Kinnitty, Cenn Eitigh, castle of, 
ii 296, 304. 

Knockainy (Anya), Aine, manor 
of, ii 169. 

Knockgraffon, Cnoc Graffann, 
mote of, ii 146-7, 175, 318. 

Lacy, Hugh de (1), comes to 
Ireland with Henry II, i 256 ; 
sent to receive submission of 
O' Conor, 264; is granted Meath, 
279 ; grant transcribed, 285 ; 
made constable of Dublin, 281 ; 
parley with O'Rourke, 320 ; 
defends Verneuil, 325-6 ; ap- 
pointed procurator-general, ii 
30 ; new grant of Meath, 31 ; 
his description, 51 ; mostly 
absent from Ireland before 
1177, 52 and note ; his rule, 53 ; 
superseded (1181), 54; his 
marriage with O'Conor's daugh- 
ter, ibid. ; reappointed, 65 ; 
finally superseded, 66 ; mur- 
dered, 67 ; his burial, 70 ; bis 

sub-infeudation of Meath, cap. 
XV ; his offspring. 111 and 

Lacy, Hugh de (2), s. of Hugh ( 1 ), 
not justiciar in 1189-91, ii 
111-2; nor in 1203-5, 114; 
marries Leceline de Verdun and 
obtains lands in Uriel, 121 ; 
granted Ratoath and Morgal- 
lion, 126 ; accompanies J. de 
Courcy to Connaught in 1195, 
134, 155; and in 1201, 136, 
187 ; treacherously arrests J. 
de Courcy, 138, 189 ; defeats 
him and banishes him from 
Ulster, 139 ; created Earl of 
Ulster, 140 ; besieges Ard- 
nurcher, 214 ; burns his castles 
near Dundalk and flees before 
K. John, 251 ; escapes to 
Scotland, 256 ; Ulster not 
restored to him by K. John, 317 
and note. 

Lacy, John de. Constable of 
Chester, joint governor, ii 54. 

Lacy, Matilda de, d. of Hugh (2), 
w. of David, baron of Naas, ii 
252 note. 

Lacy, Margaret de, d. of W. de 
Braose, w. of Walter de Lacy, 
ii 173, 319. 

Lacy, Robert de, lord of Rath- 
wire, ii 88. 

Lacy, Walter de, eldest s. of 
Hugh (1), given seisin of Meath, 
ii 112 ; arrests J. de Courcy, 
138 ; raises siege of Rath (Dun- 
drum), 142 ; his wife, 173 ; acts 
as bailiff for W. de Braose in 
Limerick, 176 ; harbours W. de 
Braose, 238, 240 ; his barons 
intercede with K. John for him, 
247 ; his castle of Trim seized 
by John, 248 ; story of his 
exile, 258 ; his castles restored, 
267, 317. 

Lagore, Loch gabliar, Crannog of, 
i 101. 

Land tenure, Irish system of, 
i 110-19. 

Lanfranc, his letters to Gothric, 
k. of Dublin, and Turlough 
O'Brien, i 129, 205. 



Laraghbryan, Ldthrach Briuin, 
i 380. 

Legal procedure in the king's 
court, curious illustration of, 
1263, of. 237. 

Leicester, earl of (Robert Beau- 
mont), defeated by aid of Irish 
barons near St. Edmunds, i 327 

Leinster, Laighin, early kings, 
i 23 ; the weakest of the pro- 
vinces, 71 ; sub-infeudation of, 
cap. xi. 

Leix, Laeighis, i 23, 175, 381-2. 

Leixlip, Laxlob (Scandinavian) 
=«saltus salmonis, i 379. 

Liamain (anglicized Leuan, 
Lyons), i 368 note. 

Limerick, Hiimrik (Scandina- 
vian), Luimneck, Fitz Stephen 
leads a force in aid of O'Brien 
to, i 178 ; Henry sends a con- 
stable to, 261 ; captured by 
Raymond, 345-9 ; garrison 
relieved by Raymond, 353-4 ; 
evacuated, 357 ; granted to Ph. 
de Braose, ii 32-3 ; fired by 
citizens, 39 ; in Norman hands, 
156 ; Hamo de Valognes grants 
burgages in, 157 ; essentially 
an Ostman city, 158 ; its 
custody, 176 ; forcibly taken 
by Meiler (2), 177. 

Limerick, bishops of, Brictius, 
ii 58 note ; Donatus O'Brien, 

Lismore, i 260, 329 ; castle of, 
261 ; ii 98 ; bishop of. Chris- 
tian, Gilla-Crist Ua Condoirche, 
i 260, 275, 293, 301, 303. 

Llandaff, Ralph, archdeacon of, 
i 261, 275, 293, 303. 

Londres, Henri de, archdeacon 
of Stafford, ii 262 ; afterwards 
archbishop of Dublin and jus- 
ticiar ; see Dublin, archbishops 

Londres, Richard de, custos of 
Cork, ii 38. 

Lothra (Lorrha or Laragh), 
castle of, ii 296. 

Louis VII of France, Henry's 
war with, i 326. 

Louth, Lughmadk, castle of, ii 

124, 250. 
Lough Sewdy, Loch seimkdidhe, 

manor of, ii 81. 
Lucius III, Pope, ii 60. 
Lune, Luighni, barony of, ii 86. 
Lusk, Lusca, manor of, i 369. 
Luterel, Geoffrey, vicecomes 

Dubliniensis, ii 275. 

Mac Carthy, Cormac, k. of 
Munster, dethroned by Tur- 
lough O'Conor (1127), i 45; 
slain by Turlough O'Brien 
(1138), 48 note. 

Mac Carthy, Cormac Liathanach 
(of Olethan), s. of Dermot, 
deposes his father (1176), i 355. 

Mac Carthy, Dermot, s. of Cor- 
mac, k. of Desmond, i 172 ; 
submits to Henry II, 259 ; put 
to flight by Raymond at Lis- 
more, 331 ; obtains aid against 
his son from Raymond, 355 ; 
yields seven cantreds of his 
kingdom to Fitz Stephen and 
de Cogan, ii 38 ; slain, 100. 

Mac Carthy, Donnell, s. of Der- 
mot, ii 146 note, 157. 

Mac Carthy, Fineen (Finghin), 
s. of Dermot, ii 190. 

Mac Coghlan of Garrycastle, 
Mac Cochlainn of Delbna, ii 90. 

Mac Costello, Mac Ooisdelhh, see 

Mac Dermot, Mac Diarmada, 
Dermot, k. of Moylurg, 263 
note, 264 note. 

Mac Dunlevy, Mac Duinnsleibhe, 
k. of Uladh, i 224 ; ii 11. 

Mac Dunlevy, Eochy, blinded by 
Murtough O'Loughlin, i 64. 

Mac Dunlevy, Rory, ii 11 note, 
17, 18. 

Mac Gillamocholmog, Donnell, 
k. of Ui Dunchada, at siege of 
Dublin, i 225 note ; parley with 
de Cogan, 241 ; joins the win- 
ning side, 243 ; submits to 
Henry, 264; his lands, 368; 
example of a Normanized Irish- 
man, ii 327. 

Mac Gillapatrick, Donough, k. of 




Ossory, obtains part of Okinse- 
lagh, i 69 ; blinds Enna Mac 
Murrough, 70. 

Mac Gillapatrick, Donnell, s. of 

Donough, i 157, 166, 175, 262, 
348, 353 ; ii 223-4. 

Mac Gillapatrick, Donnell Clan- 
nagh, of Upper Ossory, ii 224 
note, 298. 

Mac Maelnamo, Mac Mael-na- 
mbd, Dermot, ard-ri with oppo- 
sition, i 37, 216 note. 

Mac Murrough, Dermot, s. of 
Donough, k. of Leinster, date 
of birth, i 39 ; succeeds to 
Okinselagh, 40 ; his claims to 
Leinster set aside by Turlough 
O' Conor, 43 ; rises to power, 
47 ; makes alliance with O'Me- 
laghlin, 48 ; ' removes ' the 
roydamnas, 49 ; gives hostages 
to Turlough O' Conor, 51 ; elopes 
with Dervorgil, 54 ; blinds 
O'More, 58 ; his power on the 
wane, 60 ; gives hostages to 
O'Loughlin, 61 ; obtains sway 
over Dublin, 63 ; dethroned by 
Rory 0' Conor, 65 ; expelled by 
O'Rourke, 68 ; his religious 
foundations, 72 ; his family, 
73 ; goes to Bristol, 77 ; seeks 
aid from Henry II, 78 ; agree- 
ment with Strongbow, 91 ; with 
Fitz Stephen, 98 ; returns to 
Ireland, 100 ; is attacked by 
O'Conor, 141 ; makes terms, 
142 ; joins Fitz Stephen and 
assaults Wexford, 150 ; expe- 
dition to Ossory, 153 ; to 
Offelan, 161 ; to Omurethy, 
162 ; to Ossory again, 163 ; 
gives his son as hostage to 
O'Conor, 167 ; aids O'More, 
175 ; aids O'Brien, 178 ; as- 
pires to the sovereignty, 180 : 
gives his daughter to Strong- 
bow, 197 ; leads the army to 
Dublin, 209 ; invades Meath, 
214 ; his hostages put to death 
by O'Conor, ibid. ; dies, 221 ; 
his age, 222 note. 

Mac Murrough, Donough, f. of 
Dermot, slain, i 40. 

Mac Murrough, Enna, s. of Der- 
mot, blinded, i 70. 

Mac Murrough, Eva, Aife ingen 
Mic Murchada, d. of Dermot, 
i 74 ; her marriage with Strong- 
bow, 197-202. 

Mac Murrough, Murrough, Mur- 
chadh na nGaedhal, i 69, 72. 

Mac Murrough, Murtough, Muir- 
certach na Maor, i. e. ' M. of the 
stewards,' s. of Murrough, at 
siege of Dublin, i. 223 ; granted 
lands in Okinselagh, 238 ; 
death, 239 ; at relief of Lim- 
erick, 353 ; probably left in 
possession of Ferns, 390 ; ii 8, 

Macnamara, Covey, Cumedha 
Mac Conmara, ii 159. 

Maenmagh, a cantred about 
Loughrea, granted to Gilbert de 
Nangle, ii 183. 

Mageoghegan, Alac Eochagain, ii 

Magh Cobha, castle of, ii 117 

Magheradernon, 'Petit's barony,' 
ii 86. 

Maillard, Wm. Marshal's stan- 
dard-bearer, ii 211, 226. 

Mainham, i 137. 

Man, Isle of, Gottred, k. of, i 224; 
ii 11 note, 19 ; Reginald, k. of, 
ii. 141, 261 note. 

Mandeville, Martin de, ii 248. 

Mandeville, Robert de, ii 125. 

Mangunel, Raymond, ii 45. 

Mangunel, William, i 398. 

Marisco (Mareis, Marsh). Geof- 
frey de, ii 169, 199, 248, 284. 

Marisco, Richard de, i 226. 

Marriage customs of the Irish, 
i 124-30. 

Marshal, John, nephew of Wil- 
liam, ii 207 note, 250, 263. 

Marshal, William, earl of Pem- 
broke, not justiciar (1191-4), 
ii 113, 204-5 ; his biography, 
198 ; his early years, 200 ; 
marries Isabel de Clare, 201 ; 
given seisin of Leinster, 203 ; 
founds Tintern Minor. 206 ; 




goes to Ireland, 208 ; K. John 
and Meiler intrigue against him, 
209 ; summoned to John, 210 ; 
his chief men summoned to 
England, 212 ; but remain to 
protect his lands, 213 ; conflict 
with Meiler, 214-15 ; John 
changes front, 216 ; William 
returns to Ireland, 217 ; his 
character and work, 219 ; the 
final scene, 220 ; his dealings 
with his fief, 222-32 ; shelters 
Wm. de Braose, 236 ; inspires 
loyal manifesto of the barons, 
310 ; present at Barham Down, 
311; at John's surrender to the 
Pope, 312 ; and at Runnymede, 

Maskerel, William, i 279. 

Matilda, mother of Henry II, 
dissuades Henry from invading 
Ireland in 1155, i 292. 

Maupas, Peter de, ii 124. 

Maynooth, Magh Nuadat, i 380 ; 
ii 104. 

Meath, Midhe, i 23 ; grant of, 
transcribed, 285-6 ; sub-infeu- 
dation of, cap. xv ; bishop of, 
Simon de Rocheford, conse- 
crated c. 1198, ii 114 note, 

Meelick, MiUc, castle of, ii 192. 

Mellifont, Cistercian monastery 
of, i 57, 58, 65; ii 119. 

Messet (Muset, Misset), Peter de, 
ii 248, 298. 

Messet, William de, ii 86. 

Molana, abbey of, ii 43. 

Montmorency, Hervey de, de- 
scription and parentage, i 146-7 ; 
at Dundonnell, 185-8 ; sent on 
embassy to Henry, 248 ; ap- 
pointed constable, 323 ; founds 
Dunbrody, 323 ; reappointed 
constable, 332 ; defeated at 
Thurles, 333 ; intrigues against 
Rajmiond, 352 ; is granted 
Obarthy, 393. 

Mor (Moore), Robert, ii 124. 

Morgallion, Gailenga mora, ii 84, 

Motes, the earthworks of early 
Norman castles, i 341-3, and 

see under the names of castles 

and manors. 
MuUingar, manor of, ii 86. 
'Muscherie Dunegan,' Muscraige 

Donnagdin, ii 44. 

Naas, Nds, i 379 ; ii 104. 

Nangle (de Angulo), Gilbert de, 
s. of Jocelin (called by the Irish 
Mac Goisdealbh hence Mc Cos- 
tello), granted Morgallion, ii 84 ; 
joins C. Crovderg, 154 ; out- 
lawed, 155 ; given Maenmagh 
by C. Crovderg, 183 ; given 
lands in Connaught by K. John, 
263; erects a castle at Caoluisce, 
289 ; slain there, 293. 

Nangle, Jocelin de, baron of 
Navan, ii 84. 

Navan, St. Mary's Abbey at, 

Neddrum, n-Oendruim or Inis 
Mochaoi (Mahee island), ii 21. 

Nest, d. of Maurice Fitz Gerald, 
i 324 note. 

Nest, d. of Rhys ap Tewdwr, 
table of her descendants, i 18 
her children, 94-7. 

Newcastle Lyons, Liamain, i 370 

Newcastle Mc Kynegan, i 371. 

Newnham in Gloucestershire 
the muster-ground of Henry's 
army, i 249. 

New Ross, villa novi pontis, ii 
212, 230, 244, 315. 

Newry, pons Ivori, lubhar, ii 

Nicholas, archdeacon of Coven 
try, the king's chaplain, i 275. 

Nobber, an obair, castle of, ii 84, 
189 note, 250. 

Norrath le, Narragh, i 383. 

Norwich, bishop of, John de 
Gray, justiciar, 1209-13, orders 
Wm. Marshal to deliver up 
Wm. de Braose, ii 230 ; meets 
K. John at Waterford, 244 ; 
administrative reforms due to, 
277 ; builds a stone castle at 
Athlone, 282 ; concludes peace 
with C. Crovderg, 285 ; his 
policy, 287-8 ; attempts to 



subdue northern chieftains, 289 ; 
builds castle at Clones, 290 ; 
countenancesincursions of Scots 
of Galloway, 290-2 ; defeated 
by Cormac O'Melaghlin, 297 ; 
John's letter of thanks to, 310. 
Nugent, Gilbert de, ii 87. 

Obarthy on the sea, Ui Bairrchi, 

Bargy, i 393. 
Oboy, Ui Buidhe, i 384. 
O'Brain, O'Breen of the Duffry, 
O'Brien, Ua Briain, Brian of 

Slieve Bloom, ii 295. 
O'Brien, Conor, k. of Munster, 
gs. of Turlough (1), i 47-8, 50. 
O'Brien, Conor Roe, s. of Donnell, 

ii 149, 161, 171, 190. 
O'Brien, Donnell, k. of Munster, 
s. of Turlough (2), son-in-law of 
Dermot Mac Murrough, i 74 ; 
becomes k. of half Munster, 172; 
turns against O' Conor, 177 ; 
obtains assistance from Fitz 
Stephen, 178 ; at siege of 
Dublin, 224 ; joins Strongbow 
against Ossory, 235 ; submits 
to K. Henry, 261 ; destroys 
castle of Kilkenny, 332 ; cuts 
off Ostman force at Thurles, 
333 ; blockades Limerick, 353 ; 
parleys with Raymond, 354 ; 
burns Limerick, 357 ; supports 
Conor Maenmoy, ii 116 ; checks 
English advance into Thomond, 
145-6 ; enters into alliance 
with the English, 148; dies, 149. 
O'Brien, Donough, k. of Munster, 

s. of Brian Borumha, i 33, 37. 
O'Brien, Donough Cairbrech, k. 
of Thomond, s. of Donnell, ii 
149 ; leads the English into 
Thomond, 159 ; joins English 
against Eoghanachts, 161 ; rents 
Carrigogunnel from the Crown, 
168 note, 244 ; supports Eng- 
lish against C. Crovderg, 284 ; 
and against Cormac O'Melagh- 
lin, 297. 
O'Brien, Murtough Mor, ard-ri 
with opposition, s. of Turlough 
(1), i 37. 

O'Brien, Murtough, s. of Brian 
of Slieve Bloom, ii 295-6, 302-3. 
O'Brien, Murtough Finn, k. of 
Thomond, s. of Donnell, assists 
Fitz Stephen to take possession 
of Cork, ii 37 ; assumes the 
kingship of Thomond, 149 ; 
assists Wm. de Burgh against 
Eoghanachts, 161 ; and against 
C. Carragh, 190 ; joins K. John 
at Ardglas, 254. 
OBrien, Turlough (1), ard-r{ 
with opposition, gs. of Brian 
Borumha, i 37. 
O'Brien, Turlough (2), k. of 
Munster, gs. of Turlough (1), 
i 51, 53, 54, 61. 
O'Caellaidhe, Dermot, i 388. 
O'Caharny, Ua Catharnaigh, ii 

53 note, 68, 90. 
O'Carmacan, Find, ii 264 note. 
0' Carroll, Ua Cerbfiaill, Donough, 
k. of Uriel, i 64, 65, 67. 
O' Carroll, Murrough, k. of Uriel, 
i 225, 264 ; ii 15 note. 
O' Casey, Ua Cathasaigh, 1. of 

Saithni, ii 92 note. 
O'Coilein, Coilen, 1. of Ui Conaill 

Gabhra, ii 160. 
O'Conarchy, Christian, see Lis- 

O'Conor, Ua C'onchobhair, Aedh, 
s. of Rory, ii 284. 
O'Conor, Aedh, s. of C. Crovderg, 

ii 264. 
O'Conor, Aedh, s. of C. Maen- 
moy, ii 298. 
O'Conor, Cathal Carragh, k. of 
Connaught, s. of Conor Maen- 
moy, burns Killaloe, ii 180; 
attacked by C. Crovderg, 184 ; 
with the aid of Wm. de Burgh 
becomes king, 185-6 ; slain, 
O'Conor. Cathal Crovderg,C roibh - 
derg, ' red-hand,' k. of Con- 
naught, s. of Turlough, raids 
Munster, ii 154 ; retains Mc 
Costello in his service, 183 ; 
plunders the bawn of Athlone, 
ibid. ; attacks C. Carragh. 184 ; 
banished by Wm. de Burgh, 
186; attempts to recover his 



kingdom, 187 ; obtains support 
of the Crown and of Wm. de 
Burgh, 188-9; submits to 
John, 250 ; his relations with 
John, 262 ; obtains a charter 
from John, 285 ; and remains 
loyal, 286-7. 

O'Conor, Conor Maenmoy, Maen- 
maighe, k. of Connaught, s. of 
Rory, assists Donnell O'Brien 
against Strongbow, i 333 ; ex- 
pels his father, ii 100-1 ; burns 
castle of Killare, 113 ; at- 
tacked by de Courcy, 116 ; 
murdered by Conor O'Dermot, 
181 ; his English mercenaries, 

O'Conor, Melaghlin, s. of C. 
Carragh, ii 298, 302. 

O'Conor, Murrough, s. of Rory, 
brings English into Connaught, 
ii 26 ; blinded by his father, 28. 

O'Conor, Turlough, ard-rt with 
opposition, father of Rory, aims 
at the throne, 41 ; sets up kings 
in Leinster, 43 ; raids Okinse- 
lagh, 44 ; and Munster, 45 ; 
imprisons O'Melaghlin, 51 ; the 
Church endeavours to repress 
his turbulence, 52 ; defeats 
Turlough O'Brien, 54 ; joins 
O'Loughlin and Mac Murrough 
against O'Rourke, 55 ; dies, 60. 

O'Conor, Turlough, s. of Cathal 
Crovderg, ii 285. 

O'Conor, Rory, Ruaidhri, ard-ri 
with opposition, s. of Turlough 
[ard-ri), becomes k. of Con- 
naught, i 61 ; rises to power, 
65 ; dethrones Dermot, 66 ; 
takes hostages from Dermot. 
142 ; hosting against Dermot, 
167-70 ; his poHcy, 171-3 ; 
comes to Dublin to aid Haskulf, 
209 ; his inaction ex^ilained, 
212 ; kills Dermot's hostages, 
214-15 ; besieges Dublin, 223- 
30 ; meets Henry's messengers, 
264 ; raids Meath, 336 ; invites 
the English to take Limerick, 
345-8 ; treaty of Windsor, 349 ; 
parley with Raymond, 354 ; 
war with Conor Maenmoy, ii 

100 ; expelled from Connaught, 

101 ; his efforts to recover the 
throne, and death, 180-2. 

O'Conor Faly, Ua ConchobJiair 

Failghe, k. of Offaly, Cu-aifne, 

s. of Aedh, i 323 note, 381. 
O'Dempsy, Ua Dimasaigh, 1. of 

Clan-Malier, i 322. 
O' Dermot, Ua Diarmata, illegi- 
timate s. of Rory O'Conor, aids 

J. de Courcy against Conor 

Maenmoy, ii 116. 
Odoth, Odagh, Ui Duach, i 236, 

376; ii232. 
Odrone, Idrone, Ui Drona, pass 

of (Scollagh Gap), i 231 ; 

granted to Raymond, 387. 
O'Faelain, Faelan, k. of Offelan, 

i 66, 161 ; ii 326 note. 
O'Farrell, Ua Fergaih of Annaly, 

ii 90. 
Offaly, Ui Failghe, i 23, 377, 381, 

ii 36. 
Offelan, Ui Faddin, i 23, 161, 

329, 377, 379 ; ii 36. 
Offelimy on the sea, Ui Feilimidh 

deas, i 390. 
O'Flynn, Cumee, Cu-maighi Ua 

Floinn, l.of Ui Tvirtri, ii 15, 17. 
O'Garvy, Aulaf, Ua Gairbhidh, 

1. of TuUow Offelimy (?), i 223. 
O'Hara, Ua liEghra, Conor, k. of 

Luighne, ii 264 note. 
O'Hegney, Ua hEignigh, k. of 

Fermanagh, ii 186, 293. 
O'Huallaghan, Ua hUaUachdin, 

Donatus, see Cashel, archbishop 

OirghiaUa, Uriel, i 22 ; ii 15, 

Okinselagh, Ui Cennselaigh, i 23, 

39, 44, 66, 141, 238. 
Okonach, Ui Cuanach, ii 319. 
Olethan, Ui Liathdiyi, ii 41. 
O'Loughlin, Ua Lochlainn, Don- 
nell, ard-ri -with opposition, i 38. 
O'Loughlin, Donnell, s. of Aedh, 

k. of Cinel Owen, ii 17, 18. 
O'Loughlin, Murtough, s. of 

Niall, ard-ri with opposition, 

i 53 ; joins T. O'Conor and 

Dermot against O'Rourke, 55 ; 

secures Dermot in Leinster, 61 ; 



blinds Eochy Mac Dunlevy, 64 ; 

slain, 67. 
O'Loughlin, Niall, k. of Cinel 

Owen, i 266 ; ii 9. 
O'Melaghlin, Ua Mad - Shech- 

lainn. Art, 1. of West Meath, i 

337 ; ii 53. 
O'Melaghlin, Cormac, s. of Art, 

ii 295, 297-8, 303. 
O'Melaghlin, Dermot, k. of 

Meath, i 61, 65, 68-9, 141, 167. 
O'Melaghlin, Donnell Bregach, 

1. of Meath, i 214, 337. 
O'Melaghlin, Manus, 1. of East 

Meath, i. 337, 344. 
O'Melaghlin, Melaghlin, s. of 

Murrough, 1. of East Meath, ii 

55, 58. 
O'Melaghlin, Melaghlin Beg, 1. of 

Meath, ii 53, 249, 297. 
O'Melaghlin, Murrough, last k. of 

undivided Meath, his alliance 

with Dermot, i 48 ; imprisoned 

by T. O'Conor, 51 ; restored to 

West Meath, 55 ; father of 

Dervorgil, ibid. 
O'Meyey, Oilla gan-inathair Ua 

Miadhaigh, ii 68. 
O'More, Ua Mordha, k. of Leix, 

i 175. 
O'Muldory, Flaherty, Flaithber- 

tach Ua Maddomidh, k. of Cinel 

Conaill, ii 135. 
Omurethy, Ui Muiredhaigh, i23, 

162, 377, 386. 
O'Neill, Aedh, k. of Cinel 

Eoghain, ii 268, 288, 290. 
O'Nolan, Ua NuMlain, k. of 

Fotharta Fea, i 387 note. 
O'Phelan or O'Faelan, Melaghlin, 

1. of the Decies, i 186, 196, 262 ; 

ii 98. 
O'Reilly, Ua Eaghallaigh, a 

chieftain of Breii'ny, i 223. 
O'Rourke, Donnell, s. of Annadli, 

O'Rourke, Tiernan, Tighernan 

Ua Ruairc, k. of Breffny, raids 

Okinselagh, i 44 ; attacks 

O'Melaghlin, 48 ; given part 

of Meath, 52 ; submits to 

O'Loughlin, 53 ; his wife ab- 
ducted by Dermot, 55 ; sub- 

mits to T. O'Conor, 57 ; joins 
Rory O'Conor, 62 ; expels Der- 
mot, 68 ; accepts his I6g enech 
from Dermot, 142 ; joins host- 
ing into Okinselagh, 167 ; comes 
to aid Haskulf at Dublin, 209 ; 
instigates O'Conor to kill 
Dermot's hostages, 215 ; at 
O' Conor's siege of Dublin, 225 
note; assaults Dublin, 240; sub- 
mits to K. Henry, 264 ; burns 
round tower of TuUyard, 320 ; 
slain, 321. 

O'Ryan, Ua Riain, k. of Odrone, 
i 186, 231-2. 

Ossory, Osraighi, i 22, 155-61, 
163-5, 388-9 ; ii 36, 222-8. 

Ostmen of Dublin, i 40, 63, 65, 
69, 71, 167, 176, 203-13, 269, 
333 ; of Limerick, ii 158-9 ; of 
Waterford, i 185, 193-6,334-6 ; 
of Wexford, i 150-4, 163. 

Ostmen, how treated by the 
Normans, ii 335-7. 

Uthee, Ui Teigh, i 370. 

O' Toole, Ua Tiiathail, k. of 
Omurethy, i 162, 264. 

O' Toole, Laurence, see Dublin, 
archbishop of. 

Oughterard, Uachtar-ard, i 379. 

Oxford, council of, ii 30-7. 

Pax Normannica, ii 323-5. 

Pec, Richard de, ii 54. 

Petit, William le, ii 67, 86, 113, 

Pipard, Gilbert, ii 94. 

Pipard, Peter, justiciar, ii 112-13. 

Pipard, Roger, ii 119, 122-3, 254. 

Poer, Robert le, custos of Water- 
ford, i 371 ; ii 35, 55. 

Poer, Roger le, ii 12, 56. 

Pollmounty, pass of, i 167, 231. 

Pons Ivori, Newry, ii 15-16. 

Portnascully, mote of, i 389. 

Prendergast, Maurice de, lands 
in Ireland, i 148 ; leads expe- 
dition into Ossory, 159 ; leaves 
Dermot, 165 ; takes service 
under k. of Ossory, 166 ; es- 
capes to Wales, 174-6 ; returns 
with Strongbow, 189 ; besieged 
in Dublin, 226 ; summoned by 



Henry, 327 ; prior of Kilmain- 

ham (?), 366 ; granted Ferne- 

genal, 391. 
Prendergast, Philip de, s. of 

Maurice, i 391 ; ii 215, 217 note. 
Purcell, Hugh, baron of Lough- 

moe, ii 95 note. 
Purcell, Walter, ii 211, 265. 

Quency (Quincy), Robert de, i 

226, 322. 
Quency, Maud de, d. of Robert, 

Quoile, the river, ii 13. 

Raheny, Rath Enna, i 370. 
Rath, castle of, see Dundrum. 
Rath-caves, ii 27 note. 
Rath Celtair, its true position, 

ii 13 note. 
Rathcoflfey, i 139. 
Rathconarty, Rath cuanartaigh, 

now Rathconrath, castle of, ii 

Rathcoole, i 369. 
Rathkenny, ii 87. 
Rathmore, i 380 ; ii 104. 
Rathwire, Rath Giiaire, castle of, 

ii 88, 262. 
Ratoath, castle of, ii 76, 126, 247. 
Raymond le Gros, see Fitz Wil- 
liam, Raymond. 
Reban, castle of, i 383. 
Reginald's Tower, Turris Ragh- 

naldi, Waterford, i 195-6, 259, 

Repenteni, Ralph de, ii 124. 
Rhys ap Tewdwr, i 90, 98, 252. 
Richard, count of Poitou, after- ' 

wards k. of England, ii 202, 203, 

Ridelisford, Walter de, i 226, 

369, 386. 
Rinn duin (Randown or St. 

John's), ii 188. 
Roche (de Rupe), David de la, 

i 392, ii 45, 265. 
Roche's land, i 393. 
Ros, manor of. Old Ross, i 374, 

ii 231. 
Rosconnell, ii 226. 
Rosselither, Ros aiUthir, now 

Ross Carberv. ii 45, 50. 

Round, Mr. J. H., his position as 
to ' Laudabiliter ' examined, i 

Roydamna, ridomna, meaning of 
the term, i 49 ; war among 
roydamnas of Connaught, ii 
180 ; disappointed roydamnas," 
295, 298. 

St. Laurent (St. Lawrence), Al- 
maric de, i 370 ; ii 12. 

St. Leger, William de, ii 226. 

St. Michael, Robert de, i 383. 

St. Mullins, Tech Moling, i 167, 
387; ii231. 

Saggart, Tech Sacra, i 370. 

Salisbury, John of, i 290-1. 

Salisbury, William Longsword, 
earl of, ii 243. 

Sanford, Thomas de, ii 265. 

Saracen, William, ii 23. 

Saukeville, Jordan de, ii 211,212, 
253-4, 260, 265. 

Savage, William, ii 23. 

Sellarius, Saveric, i 370. 

Serland, Godfrey de, ii 260. 

Shanid, Senat, mote of, ii 164. 

Shankill, Senchell, i 369. 

Sheriffs, gradual introduction of, 
ii 275-6. 

Sinad (Sinnott), David, s. of 
Adam, i 392. 

Sinnott's land, i 393. 

Skreen, Serin Coluim Cille, castle 
of, ii 85. 

Slane, castle of, i 340 ; ii 84. 

Slievemargy, barony of, i 385. 

Steine, the, i 241 ; ii 73. 

Straffan, i 380. 

Striguil, Richard Fitz Gilbert de 
Clare, earl of, his ancestry, i 
85-8 ; agreement with Dermot, 
91 ; seeks licence from K. 
Henry, 181 ; sends Raymond 
before him, 181 ; advances 
through South Wales, 189; 
Gerald's description of, 190-2 ; 
lands, 193 ; takes Waterford, 
196 ; his marriage with Eva, 
197-202; takes Dublin, 208-11; 
besieged in Dublin, 226 ; his 
sortie, 228 ; forces ScoUagh 
Gap, 231 ; parley with the k. of 



Ossory, 236-7 ; provides for 
Murtough Mac Murrough and 
Donnell Kavanagh, 238 ; meets 
K. Henry and submits, 249-51 ; 
refuses to give his sister to 
Raymond, 323 ; summoned to 
Normandy, 325 ; given custody 
of Ireland, 326 ; his attack on 
Monster frustrated, 333 ; pro- 
mises BasiUa to Raymond, 334 ; 
marches to the relief of Trim, 
339; his death, 356-8; his 
tomb, 359-60 ; his grant of 
Kilmainham, 365 ; his dealings 
with his fief, cap. xi. 

Strongbow, see Striguil. 

Swords, Sord Coluim Cille, i 369. 

Syward, provost of Limerick, ii 

Taghadoe, Tech Tua, i 380. 

Tallaght, Tamlacht Maelrtuiin, 

Templars, grant of Clontarf to, 
date of, i 274. 

Termonfeckin, Termonn Feichin, 
ii 119. 

Tethmoy, Tuath da muighe, i 381. 

Thatcher, Prof. O. J., his posi- 
tion in relation to ' Laudabi- 
liter ', i 399-400. 

Thomastown or Grenan, Baile 
mic Antdin, ii 226. 

Thomond, Tuath Mumain, or 
NorthMiinster,sometimes called 
' the kingdom of Limerick ', 
comprised the diocese of Killa- 
loe ; afterwards distinguished 
from Ormond, and confined to 
CO. Clare, i 23 ; enfeoffment of, 

Thurles, Durlas, Ostman force 
cut of? at, i 333. 

Tibberaghny, Tiobraid Fachtna, 
i 262 ; ii 97, 98, 104. 

Timahoe, Tech ino-Chua, castle 
of, i 382 ; ii 65. 

Tintern, monasterium de Voto, 
ii 206-7. 

Toirberd, reachtaire or steward of 
C. Crovderg, ii 264. 

Trim, Ath Truim, castle of, i 338, 
344 ; ii 75, 248-9. 

Tristeniagh, priory of, ii 89, 128. 
Tuam, Tuaiin da ghualann, ii 

27 ; archbishop of, Catholicus, 

Cadhla Ua Duhhthaig, i 275, 349, 

351; ii57. 
Tuit, Richard de, ii 89, 248, 262, 

Tullaghanbrogue, ii 226. 
Turris, distinguished from castel- 

lum, ii 308 note. 
Tyrrell, Hugh, i 338, ii 83, 92. 
Tyrrell, Richard, ii 248. 

Ui Conaill Qabhra, now barony 
of Connello, co. Limerick, ii 157, 

Ui Tuirtri, a tribal district in 
North Antrim, afterwards com- 
prised in the deanery of Tuirtre, 

Ulidia, Uladh, Eastern Ulster, 
i 22, 53, 64 ; ii 10. 

Uriel, see Oirghialla. 

^"alognes, Hamo de. justiciar c. 
1196-8, ii 113; his conflict 
with Archbishop Cumin, 131-2; 
in Limerick, 157 ; grant to, 
162 ; his son Hamo, 319. 

Valognes, Matilda de, mother of 
Theobald Walter, ii 95 note. 

Vavasor, Matilda le, wife of 
Theobald Walter, ii 295. 

Verdun, Bertram de, John's 
seneschal, i 256 ; ii 80, 94, 118, 

Verdun, John de, gs. of Nicholas, 
ii 122. 

Verdun, Leceline de, d. of Ber- 
tram, given in marriage to 
H. de Lacy the younger, ii 121. 

Verdun, Nicholas de, s. of Ber- 
tram, ii 79, 122, 251. 

N'erdun, Thomas de, s. of Ber- 
tram, grants lands in Uriel to 
H. de Lacy the younger, ii 

Vernun, Ralph de, ii 124. 

Verneuil, in Normandy, defended 
by Hugh de Lacy, i 325-6. 

Villa Ostmannorum(Ostmaneby, 
Oxmantown), i 269. 



Vivian, Cardinal, holds a synod 
in Dublin, i 311, ii 25 ; meets 
da Courcy in Downpatrick, 
ii 11. 

Walensis, David, nephew of Ray- 
mond le Gros, i 348. 

Wallingford, Nicholas, prior of, 

Walter, Beatrice, d. of Theobald, 
ii 95 note, 296. 

Walter, Theobald, John's pin- 
cerna, ii 94-5 ; granted 
Ormond, 102 ; purchases a re- 
grant from Wm. de Braose, 174; 
his land in Leinster to be held 
of Wm. Marshal, 203 ; his land 
in Eile, 295-6. 

Walter, Hubert, brother of Theo- 
bald, clerk to Ranulf de Glan- 
ville, afterwards archbishop of 
Canterbury, ii 95, 201. 

Ward, hill of, Cnoc Tlachtgha, i 

Waterford, Vedrafiordr, Port 
Ldirge, men of, attack Dun- 
donnell, i 185 ; the Ostman 
town, 193-5 ; taken by Strong- 
bow, 196 ; revolt of the Ostmen 
in, 324 ; in custody of Robert 

le Poer, 371 ; K. John's charter 
to, ii 314. 

Wendeval, William de, John's 
dapifer, ii 94. 

Wexford, Loch Oarnidm, the 
Ostman town, i 150-2 ; as- 
saulted, 153-4 ; Fitz Audelin 
constable of, 281 ; granted 
to Strongbow, 326 ; seignorial 
manor of, 373 ; priory for 
knights of the Hospital founded 
at, ii 230. 

Wiking raids, i 27. 

Winchester, council of (1155), 
i 291. 

Worcester, Philip of, appointed 
procurator to supersede H. de 
Lacy, i 368 ; ii 91 ; expedition 
to Armagh, 92 ; his grant in 
South Tipperary, 103 ; sent to 
take Meath into king's hand, 
112 ; takes part in the forward 
movement in Munster, 155 ; 
takes up arms against Wm. 
de Braose, 175 ; granted lands 
in Tipperary, 318. 

Wulfrichford, Ulfreksfiordr, near 
Lame, ii 267. 

Youghal haven, sea-fight in, i