« PreviousContinue »
which provoked his excellency to say, doubtless with more anger than truth, ” “ that the Roman catholics, who stood so rigidly with the king upon religion, and that, as they called it, in the splendour of it, were then with difficulty withheld from sending commissioners to intreat him to make stables and hospitals of their churches.” But if, indeed, these people were at first so much terrified by this monster's unparalleled cruel. ties, they soon resumed sufficient courage to reject fe. veral more advantageous conditions, from his favourrite and confident, Ireton, even in point of religion, than the Marquis of Ormond could ever be prevailed upon by the most urgent necessity of his majesty's affairs, to allow them. For when that regicide, in his march to Munster, sent propofals to the citizens of Limerick,' “ offering them the free exercise of their religion, enjoyment of their estates, churches and church-livings, a free trade and commerce, and no garrisons to be pressed upon them, provided they would only give a free passage to his forces into the county of Clare; these citizens absolutely rejected the overture.
But Oliver Cromwell, besides his execrable policy of facilitating the conquest of Ireland, by the fame of his cruelties, had taken care, before he left Dublin, to publish a * proclamation forbidding his foldiers
2 Id. ib.
homes, they engaging not to bear arms against the states of England; and lastly, of life to the officers. Yet (adds my author) in great confternation, fear having seized the townmen and citizens before the commissioners return, they endeavoured to pass over the water for the safety of their lives; which Cromwell's foldiers perceiving, clapt scaling ladders to the walls, and entered the town without any rehitance; wherein all found in arms were put to the sword, to the number of two thousand; among whom Sir Edmund Butier was killed, before he had been two hours in the city. Cromwell, in the interim, not losing twenty men in the whole fiege.” Id. ib.
on pain of death, to hurt any of the inhabitants, or take any thing from them, without paying for it in ready money. This was so strictly executed, that even in his march from Dublin to Drogheda, where he was guilty of that horrid butchery, and breach of faith before-mentioned, he ordered two of his private foldiers to be put to death, in the face of the whole army, for stealing two hens from an Irishman, which were not worth sixpence.
Upon this strict observance of the proclamation, together with positive assurances given by his officers, is that they were for the liberties of the commons, that every one should enjoy the freedom of his religion, and that those who served the market at the camp, should pay no contribution, all the country people flocked to them, with all kind of provisions; and due payment being made for the same, his army was much better supplied, than even that of the Irish had ever been."
On this occasion, a congregation of twenty catholic archbishops and bishops having, on the 4th of December 1649, assembled, of their own accord, at Clonmacnoise, published a declaration, wherein " they admonished
s Doctor Gorges's Letter to Colonel Hamilton. Append. to Lesley's Anf. to King's State of the Protestants under K. James.
o Carte, ubi supra.
b“ The whole Irish party, (says Leland) was anxious for the event of this self-appointed council, and looked for nothing less. important than a violent protestation against the government of Ormond. Happily the temper of one of their bishops, Ever Mac Mahon, the Romith prelate of Clogher, disappointed these expectations. From the time of the accommodation between Ormond and O'Nial, in which Mac Mahon had been instrumental, the mara quis frequently conversed with him on public affairs, and inspira ed him with an high opinion of his talents for government, and bis zeal for the interests of Ireland ; with these sentiments he entered the aslembly of his brethren, where he had the consequence naturally derived from fuperior abilities. He filenced the factious, he encouraged the moderate, he defeated all the fecret practices of Antrim; and at length, with difficulty, prevailed on the prelates to declare, by a formal instrument, that no fecurity for life, fortune, or religion, could be expected from
all their people, not to delude themselves with vain expectations of conditions to be obtained from that merciless enemy.
And they befought the gentry, and the rest of their countrymen, for God's glory, and their own safety, to contribute, with patience, to the utmost of their power, towards the support of the war against him. They, particularly, exhorted those who were enlisted in the army, to persevere conftantly in their opposition to the common enemy, as they expected the blessing of God upon their endea
The Marquis of Ormond, in a letter to the king, observed, « that, in this affembly there were divers speeches made, tending to the fatisfaction of the people; and to incline them to obedience to his majesty, and amity among themselves, in opposition to the rebels." It must be, therefore, observed, in justice to these bishops, that it was in this letter to the king that the marquis first asked his majesty's permission to leave the kingdom, as being ab. solutely indefenfible against the rebels, by what powers he could then command. So very distant from truth is that general assertion of our historians, that it was the refractoriness, disobedience, and even rebellious disposition of the Irish clergy, that first made him resolve upon quitting the government of Ireland at that juncture.
CH A P.
> Borl. Irish Rebel. fol. 29o.
8 Cart. Coll. of Orig. Pap.
Cromwell, to express their detestation of all odious distinctions and animofities between old Irish, English and Scottish royalists, and their resolution of punishing all the clergy who should be found to encourage them.” Leland's Hift. vol. iii. p. 359.
“ It cannot be denied (says Borlafe from Clarendon) that the conclusions which were made there, seemed full of respect for the king's service, and wholsome advice and counsel to the peo. ple.” Irish Rebel. fol. 293.
Owen O’Nial submits to the peace; Inchiquin's forces
revolt to the rebels.
OWEN O'Nial, who commanded an army of five thousand foot and five hundred horse, having been incensed beyond measure at the assembly's proclaiming him a traitor; and at the same time flattered by Sir Charles Coote and Colonel Monck, with hopes of a toleration of his religion, and the restitution of his estate, had entered into a treaty with the latter, and' relieved the former, when closely besieged in Derry, the only place of strength that was then in the rebels possession in the province of Ulster. But the English parliament soon after condemned his treaty with Monck, and rejected his further service.
Cart. Orm. vol. ii. fol. 77.
“ Invited by Sir Charles Coote with an offer of 5000l. for that service.” Cart. Orm. vol. ii. fol. 76.
Owen O’Nial was in great want of ammunition; to procure a supply, he sent Hugh M-Patrick Dubh M‘Mahon to make a treaty with Monck, who readily entered into an agreement with him, engaging to supply him with the necessaries he wanted.” Id. ib. fol. 73.
Monck's proposals to O'Nial were: ift. Liberty of conscience to all his party and their issue. 2d. A competent command to O'Nial himself in the rebel army. 3d. An act of oblivion for all they had done since 1641. 4th. His party to be restored to all the lands they poflefled before that time. '5th. That O'Nial be put into poffeffion of his ancestors estate. 6th. That O'Nial shall be provided with a convenient fea-port in Ulster, and his army provided for in all points, as the rest of the army shall be.” Hift. of Independency, p. 237.
u Sir Charles Coote in a letter to the council of state in England, August 15th, 1649, informs them, “that O'Nial freely offered him his assistance, professing much affection to the parliament of England, and earnest desire to maintain their interest; that he had found O'Nial and his army very punctual and faithful in all their promises and engagements; and he made no
This is commonly thought to have been the cause of his quitting that party, and seeking an alliance with the Marquis of Ormond,“ to whom two blanks had been fent, about that time, under his majesty's hand and feal, to be made use of in any treaty or transaction with him."
Wherefore, through the agency of colonel Daniel O’Nial, that general's nephew, whom the Marquis of Ormond sent to folicit him for that purpose, “ Owen O’Nial,' on the 12th of October 1649, concluded and signed an agreement, on certain conditions, with his excellency; which, though himself lived not to accomplish, dying at Cloughouter-castle, in the county of Cavan, in the beginning of December, was shortly after performed.” Vol. II.
2 Cart. Collect. of Orig. Pap. vol. ii. p. 317.
3 Cart. Orm. vol. ii.
doubt but they would continue fo to the end. But after all, in the cant of the times, desires them to call to mind, that it is no new thing with the most wise God to make use of wicked instruments to bring about a good design for the advancement of his glory." Hift. of Independency, p. 245-6.
" Many were of opinion (says Borlase) that all that was done both by Sir Charles Coote and by Monck (with O'Nial) was transacted by the privity, if not consent, of the grandees in England ; but the grounds to faften this upon them could never be found, though the business hath been narrowly searched into; known it was, that there was a person sent over, and many overtures made by a priest, O'Reilly, to the committee of Derbyhouse, but with what reception, the certainty yet remains in the clouds.” Irish Reb. fol. 276.
• There is a very different cause afligned for this accommodation of O'Nial with Ormond, in a letter from Secretary Nicholas to Ormond himself, which he says came from a very good author, Lord Brudenell. It is there expressly said, “ that O'Nial had written to Cromwell to thank him for the care he had taken of himself and his army; but desired him withal to consider, that his promise (to assist him) was but conditional, as presuppofing the Pope's approbation, which he could never obtain ; but, on the contrary, had received a peremptory command from him, to do nothing prejudicial to the crown of England.” Cart. Collect. of Orm. Orig. Papers, vol. i. p. 298.