James Tuchet, 3rd Earl of Castlehaven
James Tuchet, 3rd Earl of Castlehaven was the son of Mervyn Tuchet, 2nd Earl of Castlehaven and his first wife, Elizabeth Barnham. Castlehaven played a prominent role in the Wars of the Three Kingdoms that took place in the middle of the 17th century, was active in the conflicts in Ireland at this time, he succeeded to the Irish earldom of Castlehaven and Baron Audley of Orier on 14 May 1631, when his father was attainted and beheaded. Most of his estates in England were taken over by others, he was created Baron Audley of Hely with remainder "to his heirs forever" on 3 June 1633, with place and precedency of George, his grandfather Baron Audley, in an effort to nullify his father's attainder. However, this was considered insufficient until a bill was passed by Parliament in 1678 allowing him to inherit the original Barony of Audley, he married twice, first Elizabeth Brydges, daughter of Grey Brydges, 5th Baron Chandos and of his wife Lady Anne Stanley, who married the 2nd Earl of Castlehaven after Lord Chandos' death.
He married about 19 June 1679, Elizabeth Graves. Castlehaven was involved in the defence of Ireland during the Confederate Wars of the 1640s and in the subsequent Cromwellian invasion. During the outbreak of the Irish uprising in 1641-42, Castlehaven volunteered to help suppress the Irish rebels, but because he was a Catholic he was not trusted to take command. Shortly afterwards, he was detained at Dublin Castle. Fearing that he would meet the same fate of the Earl of Strafford, Tuchet manage to escape 27 September, with the help of a friend and fled south into the Wicklow Mountains, his intention was ‘to gain a passage by Wexford into France, from thence into England. It was believed among the northern Irish that his escape was a contrivance on the part of the Earl of Ormonde ‘to work an understanding’ between him and his kindred in rebellion, Castlehaven being related to him through the marriage of his sister with Edmund Roe Butler. Though he considered himself English, he was appointed a member of the 25 strong Supreme council of the Confederation of Kilkenny.
In 1644 the Irish Confederate Supreme Council decided to vote for Castlehaven as the commander of a 6,000 strong expedition force in a push against the Ulster Scottish army under Robert Monro. The campaign under Castlehaven proved indecisive, the large army being used to defend the stronghold of Charlemont. Historians consider the expedition to have been a wasted opportunity: as a result of this, Owen Roe O'Neill considered Castlehaven to be incompetent and Thomas Preston developed a dislike of him.. However, Castlehaven was not lacking in military ability. Apart from Owen Roe O'Neill, he proved to be the only Irish Confederate commander capable of winning conventional set-piece battles. In 1643 he surprised and routed hundreds of Inchiquin's men in county Cork at the battle of Cloughleagh. In 1650 he won a second small victory over an English Parliamentarian force during the battle of Tecroghan with some aid from Ulick Burke; the great weakness of Castlehaven was that he was an amateur, lacking the patience to conduct sieges and somewhat touchy- it is said that some referred to him as Tiarna Beag or'Little Lord.'
Castlehaven wrote his memoirs in 1681 in response to the hysteria of the Popish Plot. Like all Catholic peers he had been barred from the House of Lords by the Test Act 1678, much to the regret of the Protestant peers who held him in high regard, he took his leave on 30 November 1678, with a speech expressing his duty to the Crown, his concern for the peace and welfare of the Kingdom. His fellow peers, knowing him to be in financial difficulty, wrote to Charles II recommending Castlehaven to his bounty, he died without issue on 11 October 1686, at Kilcash Castle, County Tipperary and was succeeded in the earldom by his youngest brother Mervyn. Mervyn's older brother George was passed over by virtue of being a Benedictine monk. Attribution This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Dunlop, Robert. "Touchet, James". In Lee, Sidney. Dictionary of National Biography. 57. London: Smith, Elder & Co. Webb, Alfred. "Touchet, Earl of Castlehaven". A Compendium of Irish Biography.
Dublin: M. H. Gill & son – via Wikisource. O Hannrachain, Tadhg. Catholic Reformation in Ireland. Oxford: Oxford University press. ISBN 0-19-820891-X. Biography Leigh Rayment's Peerage Pages
Royal assent is the method by which a monarch formally approves an act of the legislature. In some jurisdictions, royal assent is equivalent to promulgation, while in others, a separate step. Under a modern constitutional monarchy royal assent is considered to be little more than a formality. While the power to veto a law by withholding royal assent was once exercised by European monarchs, such an occurrence has been rare since the eighteenth century. Royal assent is sometimes associated with elaborate ceremonies. In the United Kingdom, for instance, the sovereign may appear in the House of Lords or may appoint Lords Commissioners, who announce that royal assent has been granted at a ceremony held at the Palace of Westminster for this purpose. However, royal assent is granted less ceremonially by letters patent. In other nations, such as Australia, the governor-general signs a bill. In Canada, the governor general may give assent either in person at a ceremony held in the Senate or by a written declaration notifying parliament of their agreement to the bill.
Before the Royal Assent by Commission Act 1541 became law, assent was always required to be given by the sovereign in person before Parliament. The last time royal assent was given by the sovereign in person in Parliament was in the reign of Queen Victoria at a prorogation on 12 August 1854; the Act was repealed and replaced by the Royal Assent Act 1967. However section 1 of that Act does not prevent the sovereign from declaring assent in person if he or she so desires. Royal assent is the final step required for a parliamentary bill to become law. Once a bill is presented to the sovereign or the sovereign's representative, he or she has the following formal options: the sovereign may grant royal assent, thereby making the bill an Act of Parliament; the sovereign may delay the bill's assent through the use of his or her reserve powers, thereby vetoing the bill. The sovereign may refuse royal assent on the advice of her ministers; the last bill, refused assent by the sovereign was the Scottish Militia Bill during Queen Anne's reign in 1708.
Under modern constitutional conventions, the sovereign acts on, in accordance with, the advice of his or her ministers. However, there is some disagreement among scholars as to whether the monarch should withhold royal assent to a bill if advised to do so by her ministers. Since these ministers most enjoy the support of parliament and obtain the passage of bills, it is improbable that they would advise the sovereign to withhold assent. Hence, in modern practice, the issue has never arisen, royal assent has not been withheld; the sovereign is believed not to have the power to withhold assent from a bill against the advice of ministers. Legislative power was exercised by the sovereign acting on the advice of the Curia regis, or Royal Council, in which important magnates and clerics participated and which evolved into parliament. In 1265, the Earl of Leicester irregularly called a full parliament without royal authorisation. Membership of the so-called Model Parliament, established in 1295 under Edward I included bishops, earls, two knights from each shire and two burgesses from each borough.
The body came to be divided into two branches: bishops, abbots and barons formed the House of Lords, while the shire and borough representatives formed the House of Commons. The King would seek the consent of both houses before making any law. During Henry VI's reign, it became regular practice for the two houses to originate legislation in the form of bills, which would not become law unless the sovereign's assent was obtained, as the sovereign was, still remains, the enactor of laws. Hence, all Acts include the clause "Be it enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, by the authority of the same, as follows...". The Parliament Acts 1911 and 1949 provide a second potential preamble if the House of Lords were to be excluded from the process; the power of parliament to pass bills was thwarted by monarchs. Charles I dissolved parliament in 1629, after it passed motions and bills critical of—and seeking to restrict—his arbitrary exercise of power.
During the eleven years of personal rule that followed, Charles performed dubious actions such as raising taxes without Parliament's approval. After the English Civil War, it was accepted that parliament should be summoned to meet but it was still commonplace for monarchs to refuse royal assent to bills. In 1678, Charles II withheld his assent from a bill "for preserving the Peace of the Kingdom by raising the Militia, continuing them in Duty for Two and Forty Days," suggesting that he, not parliament, should control the militia; the last Stuart monarch, Anne withheld on 11 March 1708, on the advice of her ministers, her assent to the Scottish Militia Bill. No monarch has since withheld royal assent on a bill passed by the British parliament. During the rule of the succeeding Hanoverian dynasty, power was exercised more by parliament and the government; the first Hanoverian monarch, George I, relied on his ministers to a greater extent than had previous monarchs. Hanoverian monarchs attempted to restore royal control over legislation: G
Plantations of Ireland
Plantations in 16th- and 17th-century Ireland involved the confiscation of land by the English crown and the colonisation of this land with settlers from the island of Great Britain. There had been smaller-scale immigration to Ireland as far back as the 12th century, which had resulted in a distinct ethnicity in Ireland known as the Old English, or Hiberno-Normans. Unofficial plantations carried out by landlords took place, such as those in County Antrim and County Down; the 16th-century plantations were established through large areas of the country by the confiscation of lands occupied by Gaelic clans and Hiberno-Norman dynasties, but principally in the provinces of Munster and Leinster. The Crown granted these lands to colonists from England; this process began during the reign of Henry VIII and continued under Mary I and Elizabeth I. It was accelerated under James I, when the Plantation of Ulster took place on land escheated from those Gaelic chiefs who broke the terms of surrender and regrant, Charles I, Oliver Cromwell.
The early plantations in the 16th century tended to be based on small "exemplary" colonies. The plantations were based on mass confiscations of land from Irish landowners and the subsequent importation of numerous settlers and labourers from England and Wales, from Scotland; the final government-planned plantations were established under the English Commonwealth and Cromwell's Protectorate during the 1650s, when thousands of Parliamentarian soldiers were settled in Ireland. Apart from the plantations, significant immigration into Ireland continued well into the 18th century, from both Great Britain and continental Europe; the plantations changed the demography of Ireland by creating large communities with a British and Protestant identity. The ruling classes of these communities replaced the older Catholic ruling class, which had shared with the general population a common Irish identity and set of political attitudes; the new ruling class represented both Scottish interests in Ireland. The physical and economic nature of Irish society was changed, as new concepts of ownership and credit were introduced.
These changes led to the creation of a Protestant Ascendancy, which during the 17th century secured the authority of Crown government in Ireland from Dublin. The early Plantations of Ireland occurred during the Tudor conquest of Ireland; the Crown government at Dublin intended to pacify and Anglicise the country under English rule and incorporate the native ruling classes into the English aristocracy. The government intended to develop Ireland as a peaceful and reliable possession, without risk of rebellion or foreign invasion. Wherever the policy of surrender and regrant failed, land was confiscated and English plantations were established. To this end, two forms of plantation were adopted in the second half of the 16th century; the first was the "exemplary plantation", in which small colonies of English would provide model farming communities that the Irish could emulate. One such colony was planted in the late 1560s, at Kerrycurrihy near Cork city, on land leased from the Earl of Desmond; the second form set the trend for future English policy in Ireland.
It was punitive in nature, as it provided for the plantation of English settlers on lands confiscated following the suppression of rebellions. The first such scheme was the Plantation of King's County and Queen's County in 1556, naming them after the new Catholic monarchs Philip and Mary respectively; the new county towns were named Maryborough. An Act was passed "whereby the King and Queen's Majesties, the Heires and Successors of the Queen, be entituled to the Counties of Leix, Irry and Offaily, for making the same Countries Shire Grounds."The O'Moore and O'Connor clans, which occupied the area, had traditionally raided the English-ruled Pale around Dublin. The Lord Deputy of Ireland, the Earl of Sussex, ordered that they be dispossessed and replaced with an English settlement. However, the plantation was not a great success; the O'Moores and O'Connors retreated to the hills and bogs and fought a local insurgency against the settlement for much of the following 40 years. In 1578, the English subdued the displaced O'Moore clan by massacring most of their fine at Mullaghmast in Laois, having invited them there for peace talks.
Rory Oge O'More, the leader of rebellion in the area, was hunted down and killed that year. The ongoing violence meant that the authorities had difficulty in attracting people to settle in their new plantation. Settlement ended up clustered around a series of military fortifications. Another failed plantation occurred in eastern Ulster in the 1570s; the east of the province was intended to be colonised with English planters, to establish a barrier between the Gaels of Ireland and Scotland, to stop the flow of Scottish mercenaries into Ireland. The conquest of east Ulster was contracted out to the Earl of Sir Thomas Smith; the O'Neill chieftain, Turlough Luineach O'Neill, fearing an English bridgehead in Ulster, helped his O'Neill kinsmen of in Clandeboye. The MacDonnells in Antrim, led by Sorley Boy MacDonnell called in reinforcements from their kinsmen in the Western Isles and Highlands of Scotland; the plantation degenerated, as atrocities were committed against the local civilian population before it was abandoned.
Brian MacPhelim O'Neill of Clandeboye, his wife and 200 clansmen were murdered at a feast organised by the Earl of Essex in 1574. In 1575, Francis Drake (later victor over the Spanish Armada in the pay of the Ea
Ulick Burke, 1st Marquess of Clanricarde
Ulick MacRichard Burke, 1st Marquess of Clanricarde, 5th Earl of Clanricarde, 2nd Earl of St Albans, was an Irish nobleman, involved in the Wars of the Three Kingdoms. Lord Clanricarde was a Catholic Royalist, who had overall command of the Irish forces during the stages of the Cromwellian conquest of Ireland, he was created Marquess of Clanricarde in 1646. He was the son of The 4th Earl of Clanricarde by his wife Frances Walsingham. Ulick's father was from an Anglo-Norman family, long settled in the west of Ireland and had become Gaelicised. Although during the early sixteenth century the family had rebelled against the Crown on several occasions, Ulick's father had been a strong supporter of Queen Elizabeth I, he fought on the Queen's side during Tyrone's Rebellion, notably during the victory at the Battle of Kinsale, where he was wounded. After the war he married the widow of The 2nd Earl of Essex, a recent commander in Ireland, the daughter of the English Secretary of State and spymaster Sir Francis Walsingham.
In 1622, Ulick married his only wife Anne Compton, the daughter of The 1st Earl of Northampton and his wife, Elizabeth Spencer. They had Margaret Burgh, who married Viscount Muskerry. Ulick was summoned to the House of Lords as Lord Burgh in 1628, succeeded his father as 5th Earl of Clanricarde in 1635. In 1636, he inherited Somerhill House on the death of his father, he was a staunch opponent of the policies of the Lord Deputy of Ireland, The 1st Earl of Strafford, who had attempted to seize much of the great Burke inheritance for the Crown. He attended King Charles I in the Scottish expedition. Charles, unlike Strafford and trusted Lord Clanricarde. Somerhill was sequestered by Parliament following the Battle of Naseby. During the Irish Confederate Wars, Lord Clanricarde supported the Royalist leader Ormonde in defending Ireland for Charles I against the Parliamentarians by uniting Catholic and Protestant nobles, he did not join the Catholic Confederate Ireland, but instead helped to broker a military alliance between the Confederates and English Royalists.
He commanded the forces of this alliance during the Cromwellian conquest of Ireland, after Lord Ormonde fled the country, soldiers of his Connaught army helped to win a minor victory at the Battle of Tecroghan. Only a few months however, his army was wiped out during the Battle of Meelick Island. Clanricarde was a skillful diplomat but not a great soldier. Like Ormonde, Clanricarde was distrusted by most Catholics in Ireland and thus was thus not capable of halting the Parliamentarian conquest of the country, he was widely regarded as a man whose actions were governed entirely by self-interest. In 1652, he made peace with the victorious Oliver Cromwell, he lost his lands in the Act of Settlement 1652 but his heirs regained them after the Restoration of Charles II in the Act of Settlement 1662. On his death the marquessate became extinct. "Burgh, Ulick de". Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900. Ó Siochrú, Michael. God's Executioner: Oliver Cromwell and the Conquest of Ireland.
Faber & Faber, 2009
Protestantism is the second largest form of Christianity with collectively between 800 million and more than 900 million adherents worldwide or nearly 40% of all Christians. It originated with the 16th century Reformation, a movement against what its followers perceived to be errors in the Roman Catholic Church. Protestants reject the Roman Catholic doctrine of papal supremacy and sacraments, but disagree among themselves regarding the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist, they emphasize the priesthood of all believers, justification by faith alone rather than by good works, the highest authority of the Bible alone in faith and morals. The "five solae" summarise basic theological differences in opposition to the Roman Catholic Church. Protestantism is popularly considered to have begun in Germany in 1517 when Martin Luther published his Ninety-five Theses as a reaction against abuses in the sale of indulgences by the Roman Catholic Church, which purported to offer remission of sin to their purchasers.
However, the term derives from the letter of protestation from German Lutheran princes in 1529 against an edict of the Diet of Speyer condemning the teachings of Martin Luther as heretical. Although there were earlier breaks and attempts to reform the Roman Catholic Church—notably by Peter Waldo, John Wycliffe, Jan Hus—only Luther succeeded in sparking a wider and modern movement. In the 16th century, Lutheranism spread from Germany into Denmark, Sweden, Latvia and Iceland. Reformed denominations spread in Germany, the Netherlands, Scotland and France by reformers such as John Calvin, Huldrych Zwingli, John Knox; the political separation of the Church of England from the pope under King Henry VIII began Anglicanism, bringing England and Wales into this broad Reformation movement. Protestants have developed their own culture, with major contributions in education, the humanities and sciences, the political and social order, the economy and the arts, many other fields. Protestantism is diverse, being more divided theologically and ecclesiastically than either the Roman Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox Church, or Oriental Orthodoxy.
Without structural unity or central human authority, Protestants developed the concept of an invisible church, in contrast to the Roman Catholic view of the Catholic Church as the visible one true Church founded by Jesus Christ. Some denominations do have a worldwide scope and distribution of membership, while others are confined to a single country. A majority of Protestants are members of a handful of Protestant denominational families: Adventists, Anglicans, Reformed, Lutherans and Pentecostals. Nondenominational, charismatic and other churches are on the rise, constitute a significant part of Protestant Christianity. Proponents of the branch theory consider Protestantism one of the three major divisions of Christendom, together with the Roman Catholic Church and Orthodoxy. Six princes of the Holy Roman Empire and rulers of fourteen Imperial Free Cities, who issued a protest against the edict of the Diet of Speyer, were the first individuals to be called Protestants; the edict reversed concessions made to the Lutherans with the approval of Holy Roman Emperor Charles V three years earlier.
The term protestant, though purely political in nature acquired a broader sense, referring to a member of any Western church which subscribed to the main Protestant principles. However, it is misused to mean any church outside the Roman and Eastern Orthodox communions. Protestantism as a general term is now used in contradistinction to the other major Christian traditions, i.e. Roman Catholicism and Orthodoxy. During the Reformation, the term protestant was hardly used outside of German politics. People who were involved in the religious movement used the word evangelical. For further details, see the section below. Protestant became a general term, meaning any adherent of the Reformation in the German-speaking area, it was somewhat taken up by Lutherans though Martin Luther himself insisted on Christian or evangelical as the only acceptable names for individuals who professed Christ. French and Swiss Protestants instead preferred the word reformed, which became a popular and alternative name for Calvinists.
The word evangelical, which refers to the gospel, was used for those involved in the religious movement in the German-speaking area beginning in 1517. Nowadays, evangelical is still preferred among some of the historical Protestant denominations in the Lutheran and United Protestant traditions in Europe, those with strong ties to them. Above all the term is used by Protestant bodies in the German-speaking area, such as the Evangelical Church in Germany. In continental Europe, an Evangelical is either a Calvinist, or a United Protestant; the German word evangelisch means Protestant, is different from the German evangelikal, which refers to churches shaped by Evangelicalism. The English word evangelical refers to evangelical Protestant churches, therefore to a certain part of Protestantism rather than to Protestantism as a whole; the English word traces its roots back to the Puritans in England, where Evangelicalism originated, was brought to the United States. Martin Luther always disliked the term Lutheran, preferring the term evangelical, derived from euangelion, a Greek word meaning "good news", i.e. "gospel".
The followers of
Connacht spelled Connaught, is one of the provinces of Ireland, in the west of the country. Up to the 9th century it consisted of several independent major kingdoms. Between the reigns of Conchobar mac Taidg Mór and his descendant, Aedh mac Ruaidri Ó Conchobair, it became a kingdom under the rule of the Uí Briúin Aí dynasty, whose ruling sept adopted the surname Ua Conchobair. At its greatest extent, it incorporated the independent Kingdom of Breifne, as well as vassalage from the lordships of western Mide and west Leinster. Two of its greatest kings, Tairrdelbach Ua Conchobair and his son Ruaidri Ua Conchobair expanded the kingdom's dominance, so much so that both became Kings of Ireland; the Kingdom of Connacht collapsed in the 1230s because of civil war within the royal dynasty, which enabled widespread Anglo-Irish settlement under Richard Mór de Burgh, 1st Baron of Connaught, his successors. The English colony in Connacht shrank from c. 1300-c. 1360, with events such as the 1307 battle of Ahascragh, the 1316 Second Battle of Athenry and the murder in June 1333 of William Donn de Burgh, 3rd Earl of Ulster, all leading to Gaelic resurgence and colonial withdrawal to towns such as Ballinrobe, Loughrea and Galway.
Well into the 16th-century kingdoms such as Uí Maine and Tír Fhíacrach Múaidhe remained beyond English rule, while many Anglo-Irish families such as de Burgh, de Bermingham, de Exeter, de Staunton, became Gaelicised. Only in the late 1500s, during the Tudor conquest of Ireland, was Connacht shired into its present counties; the province of Connacht has the highest number of Irish language speakers among the four Irish provinces. The total percentage of people who consider themselves as Irish speakers in Connacht is 39.8%. There are Gaeltacht areas in Counties Mayo; the province of Connacht has no official function for local government purposes, but it is an recognised subdivision of the Irish state. It is listed on ISO-3166-2 as one of the four provinces of Ireland and "IE-C" is attributed to Connacht as its country sub-division code. Along with counties from other provinces, Connacht lies in the Midlands–North-West constituency for elections to the European Parliament; the name comes from the medieval ruling dynasty, the Connacht Connachta, whose name means "descendants of Conn", from the mythical king Conn of the Hundred Battles.
Connacht was a singular collective noun, but it came to be used only in the plural Connachta by analogy with plural names of other dynastic territories like Ulaid and Laigin, because the Connachta split into different branches. Before the Connachta dynasty, the province was known as Cóiced Ol nEchmacht. In Modern Irish, the province is called Cúige Chonnacht, "the Province of Connacht", where Chonnacht is plural genitive case with lenition of the C to Ch; the usual English spelling in Ireland since the Gaelic revival is Connacht, the spelling of the disused Irish singular. The official English spelling during English and British rule was the anglicisation Connaught, pronounced or; this was used for the Connaught Rangers in the British Army. Usage of the Connaught spelling is now in decline. State bodies use Connacht, for example in Central Statistics Office census reports since 1926, the name of the Connacht–Ulster European Parliament constituency of 1979–2004, although Connaught occurs in some statutes.
Among newspapers, the Connaught Telegraph retains the anglicised spelling in its name, whereas the Connacht Tribune uses the Gaelic. Connacht Rugby who represent the region and are based in Galway, use the Gaelic spelling also; the Irish language is spoken in the Gaeltacht areas of Counties Mayo and Galway, the largest being in the west of County Galway. The Galway Gaeltacht is the largest Irish-speaking region in Ireland covering Cois Fharraige, parts of Connemara, Conamara Theas, Aran Islands, Dúithche Sheoigeach and Galway City Gaeltacht. Irish-speaking areas in County Mayo can be found in Iorras and Tourmakeady. According to the 2016 census Irish is spoken outside of the education system on a daily basis by 9,455 people in the Galway County Gaeltacht areas. There are 202,667 Irish speakers in the province, over 84,000 in Galway and more than 55,000 in Mayo. There is the 4,265 attending the 18 Gaelscoileanna and three Gaelcholáiste outside the Gaeltacht across the province. Between 7% and 10% of the province are either native Irish speakers from the Gaeltacht, in Irish medium education or native Irish speakers who no longer live in Gaeltacht areas but still live in the province.
The province is divided into five counties: Galway, Mayo and Sligo. Connacht is the smallest of the four Irish provinces, with a population of 550,742. Galway is the only official city in the province; the highest point of Connacht is Mweelrea, in County Mayo. The largest island in Connacht is Achill; the biggest lake is Lough Corrib. Much of the west coast is not conducive for agriculture, it contains the main mountainous areas in Connacht, including the Twelve Bens, Mweelrea, Croagh Patrick, Nephin Beg, Ox Mountains, Dartry Mountains. Killary Harbour, Ireland's only true fjord, is located at the foot of Mweelrea. Connemara National Park is in County Galway; the Aran Islands, featuring pre
County Clare is a county in Ireland, in the Mid-West Region and the province of Munster, bordered on the West by the Atlantic Ocean. There is debate whether it should be considered a part of Connacht. Clare County Council is the local authority; the county had a population of 118,817 at the 2016 census. The county town and largest settlement is Ennis. Clare is north-west of the River Shannon covering a total area of 3,400 square kilometres. Clare is the 7th largest of Ireland's 32 traditional counties in area and the 19th largest in terms of population, it is bordered by two counties in Munster and one county in Connacht: County Limerick to the south, County Tipperary to the east and County Galway to the north. Clare's nickname is the Banner County; the county is divided into the baronies of Bunratty Lower, Bunratty Upper, Clonderalaw, Ibrickan, Islands, Tulla Lower and Tulla Upper. These in turn are divided into civil parishes; these divisions are cadastral, defining ownership, rather than administrative.
Bodies of water define much of the physical boundaries of Clare. To the south-east is the River Shannon, Ireland's longest river, to the south is the Shannon Estuary; the border to the north-east is defined by Lough Derg, the third largest lake on Ireland. To the west is the Atlantic Ocean, to the north is Galway Bay. County Clare contains a unique karst region, which contains rare flowers and fauna. At the western edge of The Burren, facing the Atlantic Ocean, are the Cliffs of Moher; the highest point in County Clare is Moylussa, 532 m, in the Slieve Bernagh range in the east of the county. The following islands lie off the coast of the county: Aughinish Inishmore Island Inishloe Mutton Island Scattery Island County Clare hosts the oldest known evidence of human activity in Ireland; the patella of a bear, subject to butchering close to the time of death, was found in the Alice and Gwendoline Cave, near Edenvale House, Clarecastle. The bone features a number of linear-cut marks, has been dated to circa 10,500 BC, from the Paleolithic era.
This discovery, publicized in 2017, pushed back Ireland's occupation by 2,500 years - what was regarded as the oldest site of occupation was the Mesolithic site of Mount Sandel, County Londonderry. This bear bone was discovered in 1903 during an archaeological excavation but was not studied until over a century later. There was a Neolithic civilization in the Clare area — the name of the peoples is unknown, but the Prehistoric peoples left evidence behind in the form of ancient dolmen: single-chamber megalithic tombs consisting of three or more upright stones. Clare is one of the richest places in Ireland for these tombs; the most noted. The remains of the people inside the tomb have been excavated and dated to 3800 BC. Ptolemy created a map of Ireland in his Geographia with information dating from 100 AD. Within his map, Ptolemy names the areas in which they resided. Historians have found the tribes on the west of Ireland the most difficult to identify with known peoples. During the Early Middle Ages, the area was part of the Kingdom of Connacht ruled by the Uí Fiachrach Aidhne.
In the mid-10th century, it was annexed to the Kingdom of Munster to be settled by the Dalcassians. It was renamed meaning North Munster. Brian Boru became a leader from here during this period the most noted High King of Ireland. From 1118 onwards the Kingdom of Thomond was in place as its own petty kingdom, ruled by the O'Brien Clan. After the Norman invasion of Ireland, Thomas de Clare established a short-lived Norman lordship of Thomond, extinguished at the Battle of Dysert O'Dea in 1318 during Edward Bruce's invasion. There are two main hypotheses for the origins of the county name "Clare". One is that the name is derived from Thomas de Clare, embroiled in local politics and fighting in the 1270s and 1280s. An alternative hypothesis is that the county name Clare comes from the settlement of Clare, whose Irish name Clár refers to a crossing over the River Fergus. In 1543, during the Tudor conquest of Ireland, Murrough O'Brien, by surrender and regrant to Henry VIII, became Earl of Thomond within Henry's Kingdom of Ireland.
Henry Sidney as Lord Deputy of Ireland responded to the Desmond Rebellion by creating the presidency of Connaught in 1569 and presidency of Munster in 1570. He transferred Thomond from Munster to Connaught. About 1600, Clare was removed from the presidency of Connaught and made a presidency in its own right under the Earl of Thomond; when Henry O'Brien, 5th Earl of Thomond died in 1639, Lord Deputy Thomas Wentworth, 1st Earl of Strafford decreed Clare should return to the presidency of Munster, but the Wars of the Three Kingdoms delayed this until the Restoration of 1660. Clare's county nickname is the Banner County, for which various origins have been suggested: the banners captured by Clare's Dragoons at the Battle of Ramillies.