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Chapter 1. 1366 – 1534. The Geraldines

Chapter 2. 1534 – 1603. The Break with Rome

Chapter 3. 1603 – 1649. The Plantation of Derry

Chapter 4. 1649 - 1658. Cromwell and Transportation

Chapter 5. 1660 – 1701. Charles II and James II

Chapter 6. 1688 – 1691. The Battle of the Boyne

Chapter 1. 1366 – 1534. The Geraldines

One (perhaps prejudiced!) commentator on these early Geraldines wrote: ‘When they tasted of the pure milk of Gaelicism they never forgot its savour, so they became kindly Irish of the Irish, root and branch.’ The 4th Earl of Desmond even wrote verse in Irish. The Annals of the Four Masters record that he ‘was A nobleman of wondeful bountie, mirth, cheerfulness in conversation, charitable in his deeds, easy of access, a witty and ingenious composer of Irish poetry, and a learned and profound chronicler; and, in fine, one of the English nobility that had Irish learning and professors thereof in greatest reverence of all the English in Ireland, died penintently after receipt of the sacraments of the holy church in proper form. We have a translation of one of the poems he wrote Mairg adeir olc ris na mnáibh (translated as ‘In Defence of Women’):

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