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and by the acts for the union of the two kingdoms of England and Scotland.”
spiritual promotions to be conferred solely on such as could speak English, unless, after four proclamations in the next market-town, such could not be had.
During the administration of Sir Henry Sidney, in the reign of Elizabeth, the attention of the English Government was called to the importance of providing the natives of Ireland with religious instruction in the only language they could speak or understand. The principle is laid down by Sir Henry in the following extract of a letter addressed by him to the Queen. But still it will be observed that he only ventures to recommend such a measure for remote places of the country: -“In choyce of which ministers for the remote places,” he says, “where the English tongue is not understood, it is most necessarie that soche be chosen, as can speak Irishe, for whiche searche would be made first and spedilye in your own Universities,” (that is, in Oxford and Cambridge, where many of Irish speech were then educated], "& any found there well affected in religion, and well conditioned beside, they would be sent hether animated by your Majestie; yea though it were somewhat to your Highnes' chardge, and on perill of my liffe, you shall fynde it retorned with gayne before three yeres be expired: if there be no soche there, or not inough (for I wish ten or twelve at the least) to be sent, who might be placed in offices of Dignitie in the Churche, in remote places of this realme, then doe I wishe (but this most humblye under your Highnes' correction) that you wolde write to the Regent of Scotlande, where, as I learne, there are maney of the reformed churche, that are of this language, that he would prefer to your highnes so maney, as shall seme good to you to demande, of honest, zealous, and learned men, and that could speake this language : and though for a whyle your Majestie were at some chardge, it were well bestowed, for in shorte tyme theire owne preferments would be able to suffice them, and in the meane tyme thousands would be gained to Christ that nowe are lost, or left at the woorst."
* This letter is dated 28th April, 1576. Vide Letters and Memorials of State,
By the eighth article it was provided, “That all
But the advice given to her Majesty in this letter was but partially followed, for in 1579, Marmaduke Middleton, an Englishman, was appointed to the sees of Waterford and Lismore, which districts, although English was but little spoken there, except in the towns, were probably regarded as not sufficiently remote for the application of Sir Henry's rule.
On the translation of Bishop Middleton to St. David's in 1582, the sees of Waterford and Lismore were allowed to remain vacant for about seven years, during which time their temporalities were held in commendam by Miler Magrath, Archbishop of Cashel—that “wicked bishop Melerus," as Lord Strafford called him in a letter to Archbishop Laud.
During this vacancy the wicked Archbishop permitted, or, perhaps, induced, the Dean and Chapter to alienate for ever the see-lands, and manor of Lismore, together with the castle, which was the residence of the bishop, to Sir Walter Raleigh for a nominal rent; and the property soon after, viz. in 1602, fell into the hands of the first Earl of Cork, and is now held, in inheritance from that great plunderer of the Church, by the present Duke of Devonshire.
As soon as this transaction was completed, another Englishmau, Thomas Wetherhead, was appointed bislop, but he held the sees only from 1589 to his death in 1592, when Archbishop Magrath again received them in commendam until 1607, when another Englishman, John Lancaster, was appointed; and no prelate acquainted with the Irish language has ever since presided over those dioceses, with the
collected by Sir Henry Sidney. I Collins's State Papers, 113. fol. Loud. 1746.
* Dated Dec. 1633. “The Abp. of Cashel's suit to redeem that Church from under the ugly oppressions of that wicked bishop Melerus, I have put in a way; the examinations will be returned by the beginning of the next term, and by the end I trust to restore to that see at least £400 a-year, good lands, &c.” 1 Strafford's Letters, 172.
laws in force at the time of the union, and all the courts
exception of the present Bishop, Dr. Robert Daly, who, although unable to speak the language, has acquired some knowledge of it.
Amongst the Deans and Archdeacons of the same dioceses we find, judging from their names, that the same policy was pursued. In the following list, taken from Dr. Cotton's Fasti Eccl. Hib., the names of those appointed by Elizabeth and James I. who seem to have been natives of Ireland are distinguished by italics, and those who, it may be presumed, could speak Irish, are further distinguished by an asterisk.
DEANS OF WATERFORD.
DEANS OF LISMORE. 1566. * Peter Walsh. [Deprived 1564. Gerald Fitzjames Fitzgerald 1570 for recusancy.]
1583. John Prendergast 1570. David Cleeve
1610. Thomas Wilson 1615. Richard Boyle
161 4. Michael Boyle 1621. Henry Sutton
1622. Edward Brounker 1622. Anthony Martin
1622. Robert Daborne
ARCUDEACONS OF WATERFORD. ARCHDEACONS OF LISMORE. 1628. *Nathanael Lynch. ["No 1607. Richard Danyell [perhaps
archdeacon for a long time, an Irishman, leased his preferthe tythes having passed away ment to Sir Rich. Boyle.] to others." The archdeaconry 1612. John Alden vacant till the Restoration.] 1616. John Gore
In the adjoining see of Ossory, the policy recommended by Sir Henry Sidney was carried out by the appointment of Nicholas Walsh, who had been distinguished whilst Chancellor of St. Patrick's, Dublin, for bis zeal in preparing for publication the Irish Version of the New Testament. He died, however, before this work was completed, having been barbarously murdered in his own house, Dec. 17, 1585. He was succeeded by a native of Yorkshire, John Horsfall, who continued
• This name is spelt Cleeve by Dr. Cotton, who states that he continued Dean until 1588 at least. Therefore it is not probable, that David Čleere who was Dean
of civil and ecclesiastical jurisdiction within the respec
bishop of Ossory to his death, in 1609; Richard Deane, a graduate of Oxford, sat from 1610 to 1613, and was then succeeded by another Englishman, Jonas Wheeler, who lived to 1640.
The Deans and Archdeacons of Ossory, during the same period, with one exception, appear to have been English:
ARCUDEACONS. 1559. William Johnston (a native 1586. Edward Sponer of Worcester)
1610. Henry Mainwaring 1582. * David C'leeren 1603. Richard Deane (a native of
Yorkshire) 1610. John Todd 1612. Barnabas Boulger 1617. Absolom Gethin 1621. Jenkin Mayes
In the see of Ferns during the reigns of Elizabeth and James I., the following Bishops were Englishmen:
1566. John Devereux.
1600. Robert Grave, a native of Kent, held this see together with that of Leighlin, which have ever since been united. He was drowued, as he was returning from Dublin by sea, in October, the same year.
1600. Nicholas Stafford.
In Leighlin the following is a list of the Bishops up to the period of its union with Ferns :
* Daniel Cavanagh : he died in 1587, and the see was vacant for two years.
* This David Cleere was recommended to the Queen for the bishopric of Ossory in 1576, on the ground that he was acquainted with the Irish language. But the recommendation, for some reason now unknown, was not attended to. Vide 1 Collins, State Papers, 127. 158; 2 Cotton's Fasti, 277.
tive kingdoms, shall remain as now by law established
1589. Richard Meredyth, a native of Wales : he died in 1597, and the see remained vacant for three years, when it was united to Ferns, as above mentioned.
DEANS OF LEIGHLIN.
DEANS OF FERNS: 1580. Roger Hooker, an English- 1558. John Garvey, (afterwards
Bishop of Kilmore & Primate) 1591? Walter Hartpole
1559. John Devereux. 1597. Walter Hatfield (Dr. Cot- 1563. Walter Turner
tou doubts whether this be not 1590. William Campion the same person as the pre
1591-92. Walter Turner ceding]
1601. Thomas Ram, (afterwards Moses Powell
Bishop of Ferns) 1603. Thomas Tedder, an English
1614. Ralph Barlow, afterwards
Archbishop of Tuam. 1618. John Parker
ARCIDEACONS OF LEIGHLIN. 1587. * Peter Corse or Gorse 1615 or 1616 ? John Harris
ARCADEACONS OF Ferns.
The sees of Ossory, Ferns and Leigblin, embrace the great counties of Kilkenny, Carlow, Wexford, and Queen's County, many parts of which the Irish language is even still spoken. But with the few exceptions above mentioned, no bishop, dean, or archdeacon capable of using that language in the instruction of the people, have ever been appointed within those dioceses since the reign of Elizabeth.
Let us inquire now into the history of another of the great ecclesiastical districts of the “Irishrie," the sees of Cashel, and Emly.
Archbishop Miler Magrath was of Irish birth, and doubtless acquainted with the Irish language. But of him, as previously seen,