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sit at his residence in Portumna.
He had a body of troops as good
lookers-on, and he charged the jury vehemently. 'they most obstinately refused to find for his majesty, though we endeavoured to satisfy them several ways beyond any we had taken in any of the other three counties.' Enraged at this resistance, he resolved to make Galway an example to frighten all Ireland. He fined the sheriff £1000 for returning a 'packed jury,' and the jurors he fined £4000 each, and cast them and the sheriff into prison in Dublin until they should pay the fines and acknowledge their offence on their knees. One juror had been fined £500 for pulling a brother juror by the sleeve. The sheriff
died in prison, and Clanricarde soon after died of mortification under the persecution he endured. The Catholic lawyers who presumed to plead against the king's title he excluded from the bar, by causing the oath of supremacy to be administered to them. He required as the condition on which he would accept the submission of the landowners, that the jury should acknowledge that they gave a verdict contrary to their oaths."
The individual acts of injustice which were perpetrated by this man were accompanied by the most profligate indulgence. He was besides cruelly vindictive, and spared none who had in the least degree offended him. One day, in a paroxysm of rage at some venial fault, he soundly caned a young lieutenant, Annersley by name. Soon after this Annersley
accidentally set a stool on the foot of the Lord Deputy when he was suffering from the gout. Mountnorris, an officer in the army, hearing the incident mentioned, said: "Perhaps Annersley did it as his revenge for the caning; but he has a brother who would not have taken such a revenge!" This being repeated to Wentworth, he treated the observation as a suggestion to Annersley to perpetrate some outrage; and though he dissembled his resentment for some time, he then accused Mountnorris of mutiny, founded on this expression. Wentworth attended the court-martial to overawe its proceedings, and obtained a sentence of death against Mountnorris. The sentence was too atrocious to be carried into execution, but it served Wentworth's purpose, who cashiered Mountnorris, and gave the office, which he held as treasurer, to Sir Adam Loftus. Much as the Irish had suffered before, this most lawless act excited a loud murmur of indignation throughout Ireland; but Wentworth had secured himself from any censure from the king by handing him six thousand pounds as the price of the transfer.
The unscrupulous tyranny of Wentworth aroused the resentment of the Irish to so great an extent that it was thought necessary for his safety that he should come to England; but he soon returned to the scene of his tyrannies to hasten the terrible catastrophe which was to put an end to them. While in England he was employed in command of a section of the army sent against the Scots, whom he was "ready to put down by force of arms." Over them, however, he gained no particular advantage; but he was well rewarded, being created Baron Raby and Earl of Strafford. As Earl of Strafford we shall have to refer more at length to the man in another of our Stories; his earlship altered him not at all to the Irish when he returned to them. Their complaints were heard in the English Parliament, and not without satisfaction, for the Earl had rendered himself singularly obnoxious, and he was blamed for much of the king's bad policy. Being recalled to England by his majesty, he was impeached in Parliament-brought to trial on a charge of high treason, condemned, and executed. The alarmed king, who saw the coming storm, allowed the man to perish whose chief fault had been excess of loyalty.
Strafford-better known in Ireland as Wentworth-had there sown the seeds of a deadly harvest. When his iron rule was removed, and was succeeded by weak and inefficient government, the pent-up passions of the Catholics burst forth. There were but three or four thousand soldiers scattered over the country-the Protestant settlers were at the mercy of
those whose forfeit lands they held-and the "tender mercies of the wicked are cruel."
"The conquered and evicted Irish septs were not extinct. The clans still retained their organization. The chiefs were still recognised, and their bards still retained their ambition by recitals of the bravery of their ancestors, and their vengeance, by passionate descriptions of the wrongs they had endured. The country was full of foreign and native ecclesiastics, who keenly resented the depression of their church. This was the state of things when a conspiracy was formed for the overthrow of the English Government. The O'Neill, son of the late Earl, was now cherished at the court of Spain, where he had the command of a regiment. He is said to have suggested the conspiracy to Roger Moore, an able and politic man, head of the sept of that name. So popular was he that the peasantry were accustomed to say that 'they put their trust in God, our Lady, and Roger Moore.' He was joined by Richard Plunkett, the Lord Maguire, Hugh M'Mahon, Philip O'Reilly, and Turlough O'Neill. A messenger came from the O'Neill, stating that Cardinal Richelieu had promised him men and money, and exhorting all who bore his name to be ready for action. The leaders now proceeded to levy and drill men, pretending that they were for the service of the King of Spain. The heir of Tyrone having died, Sir Phelim O'Neill, of Kennard, assumed the chieftainship, unfortunately for the character of the Irish people, for he was a man of brutal passions and fiendish cruelty. Educated in England, he professed the Protestant faith in his youth, and he had got his estate from the Crown. The conspirators now arranged their plans with confidence, and it was determined to seize, simultaneously, the castles of Dublin, Newry, Londonderry, Carrickfergus, and other important places, and these acts were to be the signal for a general insurrection. The priests gave their countenance to the movement, and deliberated in the full confidence of victory. But it was resolved by most of the leaders to effect the revolution with as little bloodshed as possible, and the Scots were to be spared. Some, however, were for turning off the settlers as the Moors were expelled from Spain, allowing them time to remove their effects. Others protested against such lenity as detrimental to the Catholic cause, and voted for a general massacre."
Sir William Parsons and Sir John Borlace, who were then at the head of the English Government in Ireland, were detested by all classes of the people. It had been openly declared in the House of Commons that the
"conversion of the Papists in Ireland was only to be effected by the Bible in one hand and the sword in the other." One member had declared that he would not leave a single priest in Ireland; and another had gone still further and asserted that within a twelvemonth there should not be a Catholic in the land.
Rumours of the intended massacre were circulated but received little attention; those who were in the most imminent peril remained incredulous and supine. It was arranged that the massacre should take place at a fixed date known to all the conspirators throughout Ireland. On the 22nd of October the leaders who were to surprise Dublin Castle held their last meeting, and on their knees drank prosperity to the undertaking. While they were enjoying themselves, Hugh M'Mahon, in a drunken fit, betrayed the secret to Owen Conolly, a servant of Sir John Clotworthy and a Protestant; this man hastened to give information of what was to occur. His statement was at first ridiculed, but after awhile a more prudent view was taken of the matter; the gates were secured, the townsmen put under arms, the leaders of the revolt arrested, and the city declared in a state of siege. Had these precautions not been taken, 1500 barrels of gunpowder, 35 pieces of ordnance, and a stand of arms for 10,000 men would have fallen into the possession of the rebels.
Ignorant of the failure of the plot in Dublin the people of Ulster rose on the appointed day. Sir Phelim O'Neill invited himself and some followers to sup at the house of his friend and neighbour, Lord Caulfield. In the midst of a hospitable entertainment his lordship and his family were seized and bound, the castle plundered, and the garrison made prisoners. That same night Sir Phelim captured Dungannon, and the activity he displayed was emulated by other Irish chiefs. Whatever might be the intentions of the leaders, they found it impossible, having once aroused, to check the mad violence of the people, and indeed it does not appear that they made any very strenuous efforts to do so.
Both the English and Irish rebels concurred in one imposture, with which they deceived many of their deluded countrymen; they pretended that they had authority from the king and queen, but chiefly from the latter, for their insurrection; and they alleged that the intention of their rising in arms was to restore the royal prerogatives now abolished by the puritanical parliament. Sir Phelim O'Neill having found a royal patent in the house of Lord Caulfield, tore off the seal, and affixed it to a commission which he had forged for himself.
"The planters of the north were scattered among the Irish people, mingled with them in all their relations, and living with them on terms of familiarity and unsuspecting confidence. But in a moment all the ties that bound them were broken, and every friend was transformed into a foe. The landlord turned against his tenants, the servant against his master, the maid against her mistress. On every side the Protestants were plundered, their dwellings were burned, and they were themselves stripped naked and turned out upon the highway, insulted and maltreated in every possible way. Those of the naked refugees who were enabled to reach the fortified towns and castles were furnished with arms, and issuing from time to time from their strongholds, inflicted seyere punishment upon the rebels. At Dromore and Lisburn the insurgents were defeated in several skirmishes. The king sent 1500 men from Scotland to assist the Protestants, and sent also a number of commissions to the gentry. O'Neill, after several repulses in other places, led a body of 4000 from Newry, his head quarters, to Lisburn; but after several desperate assaults, the besiegers were put to flight with such slaughter that the slain were three times the whole number of the garrison. By these defeats the rebels were rendered furious, and abandoned themselves to the horrid work of indiscriminate massacre. In Armagh many Protestant clergy and the Government officers were brutally slaughtered; above 300 Protestants were massacred at Dungannon. According to the testimony of one of the officers of the garrison of Charlemont, who was kept a prisoner by O'Neill, about 200 were drowned in the Blackwater, and a similar number near Loughgall, while 300 perished in a mill-pond in the parish of Killarnen, county of Tyrone. Another witness saw 600 men, women, and children, driven naked for six miles, and goaded along by pikes and bayonets to the Blackwater, where they were drowned. In Dromore, county of Armagh, all the Protestants were stripped naked, many of them killed, and the rest turned adrift. Other parties were thrust into houses, and there burned alive, the rebels meantime mimicking their gestures during the agonies of this horrid death. One cowboy was so weary in tumbling Protestants into a bog-pit, that he said he was unable to lift his arm. Against the tender sex the ferocities of these savages was greatest. They delighted in stripping women naked, making themselves merry by inflicting all sorts of torture upon them. In the neighbourhood of Dungannon two men boasted that they had killed thirty-six women and children in one day. At Augher, O'Neill's men murdered all the English