C. P. (Charles Patrick) Meehan.

The confederation of Kilkenny online

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debates, and it was not till the 28th of March that the
articles of Ormond's treaty vrere signed by the marquess,
on the king's behalf; and the Lord Muskerry, Sir
Robert Talbot, John Dillon, Patrick D'Arcy, and
Geoffrey Browne, on the part of the confederates. At
the same time with these articles was signed a con-
ditional obligation, whereby the confederates engaged
to transport 10,000 foot into England or Wales ; 6,000
by April 1st, and 4,000 by May 1st, following; and
till the men were shipped, the articles were to be
deposited in the hands of Clanricarde, and not to be of
force or published till the 1st of May, nor then, unless
upon sending of the men. And in case the above-
mentioned forces were not sent (unless hindered by
reasonable cause, allowed as such by the Marquess of
Ormond), the articles were to be of no effect, and their
counterparts returned to the respective parties.
The following is an abbreviate of the articles : —

1 . " That the professors of the Roman Catholick reli-
gion in the kingdom of Ireland, or any of them, be not
bound or obliged to take the oath of supremacy, ex-
pressed in the second of Queen Elizabeth, commonly
called the oath of supremacy.

2. " That a parliament may be held on or before the
last day of November next ; and that these articles
agreed on, may be transmitted into England, according
to the usual form, and passed, provided that nothing
may be passed to the prejudice of either Protestant or
Catholick party, other than such things as upon this
treaty shall be concluded.

3. " That all acts made by botn or either houses of
parliament, to the blemish or prejudice of his majesties
Roman Catholick subjects, since the 7tli of August,
1641, shall be vacated by acts of parliament.

4. " That no actions of law shall be removed before
the said parliament, in case It be sooner called than the
last of November ; and that all impediments which may
hinder the Roman Catholicks to sit in the next parliament,
shall be removed before the parliament sit.

5. " That all debts, do stand in state, as they were in
the beginning of these troubles.

6. " That the plantation in Connaught, Kilkenny
ll>«.re. Tliomond, Tipperary, Limrick. and Wicklo'



inay be revoked by act of parliament, and their estates
secured in the next sessions.

7. " That the natives may erect one or more inns of
court in or near the city of Dublin, they taking an oath ;
as also one or more universities, to be governed as his
majesty shall appoint ; as also to have schools for edu-
cation of youth in the kingdom.

8. " That places of command, of forts, castles, garri-
sons, towns, and other places of importance, and all
places of honour, profit, and trust, shall be conferred
with equal indifferency upon the Catholicks,as his majes-
ties other subjects, according to their respective merits
and abilities.

9. " That £12,000 sterUng be paid the king yearly,
for the court of wards.

10. '• That no peer may be capable of more proxiea
than two. And that no lords vote in parliament, unless,
in five years, a lord baron purchase in Ireland £200
per annum, a viscount £400, and an earl £600, or lose
their votes till they purchase, •

11. "That the independency of the i>arliament of
Ireland on the kingdom of England shall be decided by
declaration of both houses, agreeable to the laws of the
kingdom of Ireland.

12. " That the council table shall contain itself within
its bounds in handUng matters of state, as patents of
plantations, offices, &c., and not meddle with matter be-
twixt party and party.

13. ♦' That all acts concerning staple or native com-
modities of this kingdom shall be repealed, except wooli
and woollfels ; and that the commissioners, the Lord
Mountgarret, and others, named in the twenty-sixth ar-
ticle, shall be authorized, under the great seal, to mode-
rate and ascertain the rates of merchandize to be ex-
ported and imported.

14. '• That no governor be longer resident than his
majesty shall find^ for the good of his people, and that
they make no purchase, other than by lease, for the pro-
vision of their houses.

15. y That an act of oblivion may be passed, without
extending to any who will not accept of this peace.

16. **That no governor, or any other prime ministe.f


of state in Ireland, shall be farmers of his majesties

17. "That a repeal of all monopolies be passed.

18. "That commissioners be appointed to regulate the
court of castle-chamber.

19. " That acts prohibiting plowing by horse tails, and
burning of oats in straw, be repealed.*

20. '• That course be taken against the disobedience of
the cessation and peace.

21. " That such graces as were promised by his majesty
in the fourth year of his reign, and sued for by a commit-
tee of both houses of parliament, and not expressed in
these articles, may, in the next ensuing parliament, be
desired of his majesty.

22. "That maritime causes be determined here, with-
out appeal into England.

23 ' ' That the increase of rents lately raised upon the
commission of defective titles be repealed.

24. " That all interests of money due by way of debt,
mortgage, or otherwise, and not yet satisfied since the 23d
of October, 1641, to pay no more than £5 per cent.

25. "That the commissioners have power to deter-
mine all cases within their quarters, until the perfection
of these articles by parliament, and raise 10,000 men for
his majesty.

26. "That the Lord Mountgarret, Muskerry, Sir Da-
niel O'Bryan, Sir Lucas Dillon, Nicholas Plunket,
Richard Bealing, Philip Mac Hugh O'Relie, Terlogh
O'Neal, Thomas Flemming, Patrick Darcy, Gerald Fen-
nel, and Jefifery Brown, or any five of them, be for the
present commissioners of the peace, Oyer and Terminer,
and gaol-delivery, in the present quarters of the confede-
rate Catholicks ; with power of justise of peace. Oyer and
Terminer and gaol-delivery, as in former times of peace
they have usually had.

27. "That none of the Roman Catholick party, be-
fore there be a settlement by parliament, sue, implead,
or arrest, or be sued, impleaded, or arrested, in any
court, other than before the commissioners, or in _ the

* This article needs some explanation, as it is hard to reconcile such
barbarous usages with a period so enlightened.


eerferal corporations or other judicatures within their

28. "That the confederate Catholicks continue in
their possessions until settlement by parliament, and to
be c(^mmanded by his majesties chief governour, with
tlie advice and consent of the commissioners, or any five
of them.

29. ' ' That all customs, from the perfection of these
articles, are to be paid into his majesties receipt, and to
liis use ; as also all rent due at Easter next, till a full
settlement of parliament.

30. *' That the commissioners of Oyer and Terminer,
and gaol-delivery, shall have power to hear and deter-
mine all offences committed or done, or to be committed
or done, from the 15th day of September, 1643, until
the first day of the next parliament."

Such was the result of these negotiations by which the
Catholics of Ireland were left in the strange condition of
an alliance Avith the king through his private agent, and
of suspended hostility through his lord lieutenant.

It has been asserted by Clarendon, that tlie nuncio
consented to the treaty which was now concluded with
Ormond ; but that assertion is not founded on fact. He
steadily opposed it ; and early in February caused the
bishops to sign a protest against any treaty which did
not guarantee the free exercise of religion, and the re-
storation of the church property, as well as the appoint-
ment of a Catholic lord lieutenant to succeed Ormond.
In fact, he could not, with any degree of consistency,
have assented to that peace ; for, of its thirty articles,
the only one which touched the question of religion is
the first, by which it was agreed " That the professors
of the Roman Catholic religion in this kingdom of Ire-
land be not bound to take the oath of supremacy ex-
pressed in the second of Queen Elizabeth," whilst the
vital subject was remitted to the consideration of his

The meeting of the general assembly, before breaking
up, passed two resolutions, which tended much to expe-
dite business and remove abuses. By the first it was
determined, tliat for the future the supreme council
should be reduced to nine members ; that is to say, each
province was to return two, who, with the secretary


made nine. This was found to be matter of great ad.
vantage, as much inconvenience was tne result of the
great number who sat in their former assemblies. The
second resolution ordained that the clergy should fur-
nish, through their own hands, two-thirds of the church
revenues for the maintenance of the war, as many frauds
had resulted from a system which, in this particular,
needed much reform.

The supreme council remained at Kilkenny, and the
nuncio, seconded by the bishops, set about remedying
the deplorable state to which the country had been re-
duced by armistices, and the jealousies which were fo-
mented by the contending parties. The adherents of
Ormond, more intent on sending supplies to England
than securing themselves, had sadly neglected the mili-
tary affairs of Ireland. The time which they consumed
disputing in their cabals, had been turned to good ac-
count by Munroe in the north, and the parliamentary,
lord president in Connaught. Kinuccini urged the su-
preme council to establish a military tribunal, to which
ail the generals and officers commanding the confederate
troops should be amenable. Hitherto the commanders,
as well as inferior officers, had been elected by their re-
spective provinces. Clanricarde remained neutral, and
the nuncio indulged a hope of drawing him into the
confederacy. • In fact, the neutrality of Lord Clanri-
carde was his reason for not presenting him with a bull
which he had brought from Rome. In the person of the
Archbishop of Tuam the confederates experienced a
great loss, and the record Avhich the nuncio has left of
his character, cannot but be pleasing. " This prelate,"
says he, "when proceeding to Sligo took leave of his
friends, quoting some old prophecies concerning the
church over which he presided, (in sooth, the peo-
ple of this country are much given to predictions,) and
stating that he was destined to return no more. When
surrounded by his enemies, he boldly declared that ha
rejoiced to lay down his life for religion ; and gloriously
has he closed the period of his labours, which have er«
now procured him a reward in heaven."*

After the bishop's death, the command devolved on

* BlnacclQi Konziataro, p. fis.


Hie heroic Bourke ; and it was resolved that he should
not be removed. Preston, who commanded in Leinster,

was far from being high in the esteem of the nuncio

Although an experienced soldier, he had not much love
for the representatives of the "old Irish." He was a
man of whimsical character, and full of all the preju-
dices which the Catholics of the Pale had ever nourished
for their Celtic brethren. Alternately swayed by his
attachmejit to Ormond and his love for the Catholic re-
ligion, he did not possess those attributes which belong
to a man of bold and decided views. His hatred of
Owen Roe was another cause of the nuncio's distrust ;
for although O'Neill and Preston had served from early
youth under the same standard, there existed the most
rancorous hatred between them. O'Neill despised the
Leinster general, and he in return did not fail, on all
XJcasions, to depreciate and ridicule his rival. Strange
taat at such a time these feelings of jealousy and mutual
hatred should have existed 1* The province of Ulster
was overrun by the Scotch ; and, as we have already
stated, the rival pretensions of Owen Roe and Sir Plic-
lim had done incalculable mischief. Indeed, nothing
short of the delegated majesty of Rome could have
brought about a reconciliation.!

Munster was almost entirely in the hands of Inchi-
quin, and the defection of Thomond aggravated the mis-
fortunes of that province. Castlehaven, in the recent
campaign, had not acted with spirit, and, in complai-
sance to Ormond, did not press the siege of Youghal ;
the fortress of Duncannon had been totally neglected ;
■»nd, although it commanded the entrance to Wexford
and Ross, the bickerings of the confederates did not give
them time to garrison or strengthen it.

Rinuccini bitterly inveighed against this state of
things, and charged the supreme council with indiffer-
ence to matters of such mighty moment. But the
Bpring had now come, and he resolved to strike a blow
which was calculated to convince the Irish that they

• Sir Phelim O'Neill was married to Preston's daughter. Henr7,
the son of Owen Roe, was married to the daughter of Luke FitZe*-
laid, and was slain in the year 1655, in the noith, after quarter given-
— Morrisons Threnodia.

t r. Ai.azzi, p.l36.


ehojki place more reliance on their own swords and
energies than on the delusive promises of a king " who
had nothing of faith or generosity in him." * Before
distributing the arms and money which he had caused
to be brought to Kilkenny, the nuncio submitted his
plan of a campaign to the council. He inclined to make
Ulster the seat of war, for the following reasons:—.
First — Its vicinity to Scotland gave easy access to the
enemy. Secondly— The devotion of its inhabitants to
the Catholic religion was more fervent and sincere than
that of the other provinces. It was now the granary of
Munroe, who was continually detaching parties of his
marauders into Connaught. But the more powerful
reason was the superior generalship of Owen Koe, who
confessedly surpassed all the others in military know-

Moreover, it was easy to supply the wants of the men
who were now crowding round his standard. "The
Boldiers of Ulster," says he, "and, in some parts, those
of Connaught, naturally accustomed to suffering, and
habituated to the frosts of that northern climate, have
few wishes and few wants. Caring but little for laread,
they live upon shamrock and butter. Their drink is
milk, and, as a great luxury, usquebaugh. Provided
they have shoes and a few utensils, a woollen cloak
serves for their covering, more zealously careful of their
sword and musket than of their personal comfort. They
seldom touch money, and therefore complain but little
about it."f In the latter respect they stood in strange
contrast with the Leinster troops under Preston, for
they served for pay, which was regulated according to the
Flemish standard.

Muskerry and Mountgarret did not relish the nuncio's
partiality for tlie men of Ulster ; nor were they roused
to a sense of the dangers which threatened that pro-
A'ince, till the fugitives who were driven before Munroe's
bands took shelter under the walls of Kilkenny, and
foreshadowed the fate which menaced themselves, if not
ipeedily averted.

Moved by these considerations, the nuncio made up

• Lucy H^itchinson's Memoiraof her Husband, p. 66.
t Aiazzi, p. S39. Vide Lublin Ennin'x, June, 1844.


his mind to give the entire of the supplies to the army
under Owen Roe. But, to prevent the ill-feeling which
he was told should result, he consented, however re-
luctantly, to bestow two- thirds of the arras, ammunition,
and money on General Preston. The council, moreover,
voted £3,000 to Ormond, on a proviso that he would
immediately march into the east of Ulster, and operate
against the Scotch.

Clanricarde, alarmed at the advance of Coote, con-
sented to take the field in his province ; and, in the ab-
sence of an enemy in Leinster, Preston was commanded
to proceed and act under him. Muskerry, whose mill-
tary acquirements were not of a grand order, was to
proceed to Munster, and recover the castles delivered by
Thomond to the parliament, and, if possible, to over-
whelm Inchiquin.

The nuncio had already sent one of his retinue to
report on the state of tlie fortress of Duncannon ; and,
when informed of its immediate wants, he obliged
Preston to look after its defence. Many and bitter have
been the reproaches cast on the head of Rinuccini ; but,
nevertheless, it must be admitted, that he sought to
convince the Irish that they had within themselves re-
sources which, if properly directed, might have insured
success. To use his own sentiment, he found them
** dazzled by the splendour of England, and chilled by
the shadow of her greatness." If he failed in every
other respect, does he not deserve some praise for having
striven to teach the confederates that they might have
obscured that glittering despotism which had so long and
so fearfully ground them ?

Of all these arrangements, nothing gave the nuncio
greater satisfaction than the settlement of the question
between Sir Plielim O'Neill and his great kinsman.
" The generous reconciliation" which had been effected
through him gave promise of some grand result. In a
spirit savouring of the prophetic, he announced to the
assembly that Ulster should soon be rid of its invaders,
and the cathedral of Armagh restored to the ancient
worship. There was nothing wanting to perfect these
plans, but the presence of Invernizi, with the light ves-
eeis which were meant to cruise along the coast, an'l


confedehation of Kilkenny.

Intercept the supplies which the parliament Avas
lending to their adherents in the seaport towns.

Nor was the solicitude of the nuncio and the confede-
rates for the king's relief in the least diminished by the
more urgent exigencies of Ireland. By order of the su-
preme council 4,000 men were drawn out of the stand-
ing armies of Leinster and Munster, and 2,000 more cut
of the other provinces, and a day was appointed for their
, embarkation at Passage, in the county of Waterford.
An order was issued for levying four thousand more,
who were to be transported into England as soon as pos-
sible. That the troops might be sent without delay, an
embargo was laid on all vessels in the river of Waterford
and in the harbours of Wexford and Dungarvan.

But when everything promised fair, intelligence was
brought to Glamorgan that the king had disavowed hira
as far back as the 29th of January ; and soon after came
the news of the capture of Chester by the parliament.
There Avas now no place for the Irish to land on the coast
of England, and the men returned to Clonmel and Cashel.
Three hundred of them followed Lord Digby, to form a
body-guard for the Prince of Wales, who was said to have
taken refuge in Jersey; and a larger body sailed for
Scotland, to assist Montrose, under whom they per-
formed prodigies of valour.

Rinuccini did not conceal his feelings on this occasion ;
for, although he grieved over the king's losses, he was
heartily rejoiced that those troops were not sent out of
Ireland, where their serA'ices were so much required.
Moreover, such a force could be of little avail to Charles,
DOAv that his enemies were in the ascendant ; and sup-
posing that the Irish troops had effected a landing in
England or Wales, without cavalry to cover them, or
strong places to receive them, their destruction must
have been inevitable, for, by an act passed in October,
1644, it was ordered *' that no quarter should be given
to any Irishman, or papist born in Ireland.'^

Of the 300 men who accompanied Digby, 100 wert
left to garrison Scilly, and facilitate the communication
between Ireland and the Continent; and it was now
tliought that the remainder would return with the Prince
of Wales to Ireland ; but the prince's advisers objecting


'O such a step, he fled to the queen at Paris, whither ho

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Online LibraryC. P. (Charles Patrick) MeehanThe confederation of Kilkenny → online text (page 13 of 22)