Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 19.djvu/133

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Fitzgerald

127

Fitzgerald


was forced to sue for pardon, 'which at length the lord president did consent to, and James Fitzmaurice came to Kilmallock, where in the church the lord president caused him to lie prostrate, taking the point of the lord president's sword next his heart, in token that he had received his life at the queen's hands, by submitting himself unto her mercy. And so he took a solemn oath to be and continue a true subject unto the queen and crown of England' (23 Feb. 1573). He gave up one of his sons as hostage, and Perrot wrote to Burghley that from his conduct he almost expected him to prove 'a second St. Paul.' On the return of the Earl of Desmond he exerted himself to induce that nobleman to assume a position of irreconcilable enmity to England, but, finding him more inclined to submit to 'reasonable terms,' he determined to retire to the continent. His object in so doing, he said to some, was to obtain pardon from Elizabeth through the mediation of the French court; to others he declared that he was compelled to leave Ireland by the unkindness of his cousin. One excuse was probably as good as another. In March 1575, accompanied by the White Knight and the seneschal of Imokilly, he and his family sailed on board La Arganys for France, and a few days afterwards landed at St. Malo, where they were all cordially received by the governor. From St. Malo he proceeded to Paris, where he had several interviews with Catherine de' Medici. He promised largely, we are told, offering in return for assistance to make Henry III king of Ireland. During 1575-6 he remained in the neighbourhood of Paris, and received a pension of five thousand crowns, which, considering the scarcity of money, Dr. Dale shrewdly conjectured was not 'pour ses beaux yeux.' But finding that he was merely a pawn in the delicate game that Elizabeth and Catherine were playing, he, early in 1577, left France to try his fortunes at the Spanish court. Here the crown of Ireland was offered to Don John; but Philip, with the Netherlands and Portugal on his hands, had no inclination to break openly with England; so, leaving his two sons Maurice and Gerald under the protection of Cardinal Granvelle, who had taken a fancy to them, he went on to Italy, where he met with a much more satisfactory reception from Gregory XIII. At the papal court he fell in with Stukely, and a plan was soon on foot for the invasion of Ireland, the crown this time being promised to the pope's nephew. Leaving Stukely to follow with the main body of the invading force, Fitzmaurice, accompanied by Dr. Sanders, papal nuncio, and Matthew de Oviedo, sailed from Ferrol in Galicia on 17 June 1579 with a few troops which he had gathered together, having with him his own vessel and three Spanish shallops. In the Channel two English vessels were captured, and on 16 July they arrived in the port of Dingle in Kerry, where they took possession of the Fort del Ore. On the 18th they cast anchor in Smerwick harbour, where on the 25th they were joined by two galleys with a hundred soldiers. Four days later, however, their ships were captured by the English fleet. Fitzmaurice's first concern was to despatch an urgent but ineffectual exhortation to the Earls of Desmond and Kildare, as heads of the Geraldines, to join with him in throwing off the yoke of the heretic, and then, leaving his soldiers in the Fort del Ore to await the arrival of Stukely, he went to pay a vow at the monastery of the Holy Cross in Tipperary. On his way thither he was slain in a skirmish (the merits of which are somewhat uncertain) by his cousin, Theobald Burke. He married Katharine, daughter of W. Burke of Muskerry, by whom he had two sons, Maurice and Gerald, and a daughter.

[The chief authorities for his life are Hamilton's Irish Calendar; Crosby's Foreign Calendar; Geraldine Documents, ed. Hayman and Graves; Rawlinson's Life of Sir John Perrot; Hogan's Ibernia Ignatiana; Moran's Catholic Archbishops of Dublin; Calendar of Carew MSS. i. 397; Kerry Magazine, No. 31; O'Daly's Initium, incrementa, et exitus familiæ Geraldinorum; O'Sullevan's Historiæ Catholicæ Iberniæ Compendium; Annals of the Four Masters; Annals of Loch Cé; Cox's Hibernia Anglicana; Bagwell's Ireland under the Tudors, vol. ii. In the Kilkenny Archæological Society's Journal, July 1859, will be found a collection of Irish letters by Fitzgerald, translated and edited by Dr. O'Donovan.]

R. D.

FITZGERALD, JAMES, commonly called the Tower Earl, or the Queen's Earl of Desmond (1570?–1601), was elder son of Gerald Fitzgerald, fifteenth earl of Desmond (d. 1583) [q. v.], by his second marriage with Eleanor, daughter of Edmund Butler, lord Dunboyne. He was born in England about 1570, and the queen was his godmother.

When his father renounced his allegiance to the English crown in 1579, the child seems to have been resident in Ireland. His mother, to dissociate him from his father's ill fortune, delivered him up to Sir William Drury, an acting lord justice, who sent him to Dublin Castle. On 28 Aug. 1582 the countess bitterly complained to Lord Burghley that his education was utterly neglected, and petitioned for better treatment (Hayman and Graves, 91). On 17 Nov. 1583, and on 9 July