Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 41.djvu/328

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O'Brien
O'Brien
322

ster; but a formal promise had already been given to Jerome, earl of Portland, who received a patent for life on 1 March. Ormonde was against slighting a man who had done great service in Ireland for the sake of one who had done nothing at all; but his advice was neglected, and Inchiquin was dismissed with fair words. He had a warrant from the king for an earldom, but this he forbore to use. He left Oxford after a stay of about a fortnight, apparently in tolerable humour, but it was soon known in Ireland that he came discontented from court (Carte, letters 239, 258). What he saw at Oxford was not likely to raise his estimate of the king's power; and in any case the parliament were masters of the sea, and the only people who could help the protestants of Monster. A visit to Dublin on his way did not change his opinion, and in July he and his officers urged the king, in a formal address, to make peace with his parliament. At the same time they called upon the houses to furnish supplies for prosecuting the war against the Irish (Carte, i. 513; Rushworth, Hist. Collections, v. 918). In November 1642 Inchiquin had told Ormonde that he was no roundhead, and in August 1645 he assured his brother-in-law, Michael Boyle [q. v.], the future primate and chancellor, that he would waive all dependence on the parliament if he could see safety for the protestants by any other means (Carte, letter 407); and between these dates he made many appeals to Ormonde not to desert the protestants for an Irish alliance, exposing the 'apparent practice of the Irish papists to extirpate the protestant religion, which I am able to demonstrate and convince them of, if it were to any purpose to accuse them of anything' (Clarendon State Papers, ii. 168, 170, 173). In June 1644 he was going to England, but Ormonde advised him to wait until he had cleared himself from Muskerry's charges about the Cappoquin business (Clarendon Cal. i. 250). During the next few weeks he edged away both from the confederate catholics and from Ormonde, and on 25 Aug. 1644 he informed the latter that a parliamentary ship had reached Youghal, that the town had embraced that cause, and that he should have to do the same ; and he entreated him to put himself at the head of the protestant interest (ib. ; Youghal Council-Book, p. 247). In August Inchiquin expelled nearly all the Roman catholics from Cork, Youghal, and Kinsale; and they were allowed to take only as much property as they could carry on their persons. 'All the Irish inhabitants' are the words used by this chief of the O'Briens (Clarendon State Papers, ii. 171; Rushworth, v. 290; Gilbert, Confederation and War, ii. 235).

The English parliament made Inchiquin president of Munster, and he continued to act without reference to Portland or to Ormonde, who was the king's lord-lieutenant. Receiving no supplies from England, he managed to keep the garrisons together, and, although he had opposed the general armistice, was forced to make a truce with the Irish in the winter of 1644-5. The siege of Duncannon Fort, which Lord Esmond held for the parliament, was nevertheless proceeded with; and at its surrender, on 18 March 1645-6, it was found that Esmond had been acting under Inchiquin's directions, although the fort is not in Munster (ib. iv. 186). The truce expired 10 April 1645, and Castlehaven at once invaded Munster with six thousand men, reducing most of the detached strongholds easily, capturing Inchiquin's brother Henry, and ravaging the country to the walls of Cork. Inchiquin was active, but too weak to do much; and on 16 April Castlehaven came before Youghal, which was valiantly defended by Broghill. The latter took the offensive early in May with his cavalry, and won a battle near Castlelyons. Inchiquin sent in many supplies by sea from Cork, in which he had the help of Vice-admiral Crowther's squadron; a larger convoy was sent by the parliament after Naseby, and in September Broghill, who had been to England for help, finally relieved the place. At the end of the year Inchiquin induced his kinsman, Barnabas O'Brien, sixth earl of Thomond [q. v.], to admit parliamentary troops into Bunratty Castle, near Limerick, but it was retaken in the following July (Rinucci, Embassy in Ireland, p. 191).

On 5 Jan. 1645-6 the English House of Commons voted that Ireland should be governed by a single person, and on the 21st that that person should be Philip Sidney, lord Lisle [q. v.], who had already seen service in that country (Rushworth, vi. 248). Ormonde's treaty with the confederate catholics, to which Inchiquin was no party, was ratified on 29 July, but was denounced by Rinuccini and the clergy adhering to him. It had, however, the effect of checking active warfare in Munster. Lisle did not land at Cork until March 1646-7 (Whitelocke, p. 239), when he brought money, arms, and a considerable body of men. He did little or nothing, and, his appointment expiring in April, Inchiquin produced his own commission under the great seal of England, and declined to acknowledge any other. The officers of the army pronounced in their old leader's favour, and amusing details of the