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Annals of the Four Masters (Author: [unknown])

Annal M1603


THE AGE OF CHRIST, 1603. The Age of Christ, one thousand six hundred three.


O'Neill ( Hugh, the son of Ferdorcha) and most of the Irish of Leath-Chuinn, except O'Rourke, came in under peace; for a proclamation for a general peace,


and a restoration of his blood and territory to every one that wished for it, had been issued by His Majesty King James, after he had been appointed in the place of the Queen as King over England, France, and Ireland.



Mac Sweeny Fanad (Donnell) came under the law, to join Niall O'Donnell.



Mac Sweeny-na-dTuath (Mulmurry, the son of Murrough), and Caffar Oge, the son of Caffar, son of Manus O'Donnell, went to Tirconnell, with their people and cattle, to wage war with Niall Garv and the English. They made no delay until they arrived at the Rosses and the Islands. They had not been long here when they were plundered by Niall and his kinsmen; and Caffar Oge was taken prisoner, and detained in custody.


The people of Rury O'Donnell repaired to Tirconnell with all their property, cattle, and various effects, in the first month of spring. But Rury himself, with his gathering and muster of Irish and English, with Captain Guest, went (before his people had removed from the west) to revenge and get satisfaction of O'Rourke (Brian Oge), for the insult and dishonour he had some time before offered him (as he had in contemplation some time before); so that they plundered and ravaged Breifny, both its crops and corn, and all the cattle they could seize upon, for the greater part of them had been driven into the wilds and recesses of the territory. A few persons were slain between them, among whom were Owen, the son of Ferdorcha O'Gallagher, and Turlough, the son of Mac Loughlin, who fell by each other on that occasion. A party of the English were left in garrison at Dromahaire, for the purpose of plundering the country


around them. O'Rourke was thenceforward obliged to remain with a few troops in the woods or precipitous valleys, or on the islands in the lakes of his territory.


As for Niall Garv O'Donnell, a letter arrived from Dublin to him, requesting of him to come before the Lord Justice and the Council, to receive a patent for Tirconnell, as a reward for his services and his assistance to the Crown. He


neglected this thing; and what he did was, to go to Kilmacrenan, and send for O'Firghil, the Coarb of ColumbLille; and he was styled O'Donnell, without consulting the King's representative or the Council. After the Lord Justice and the Council had heard of this, they became incensed against Niall, and even the General, Sir Henry Docwra, did not well like him, although he had been faithful to him, and had rendered him much service before that time.


Rury O'Donnell happened to be in Dublin at this time; and he was cited to appear before the Lord Justice and the Council. Letters and writings were sent with him to Sir Henry Docwra, ordering him to take Niall Garv prisoner. Some captains were sent in company with him; and when Rury arrived at Derry, the Governor sent a party of the officers and captains of Derry [...] Tuathal, the son of the Dean O'Gallagher; Hugh Boy, the son of John Oge; and Felim, the son of John Oge, with others besides them, were taken prisoners on that occasion. Niall Garv made his escape shortly afterwards, and proceeded himself, with his kinsmen and people, into the woods of Ceann-Maghair.



At this time Manus Oge O'Sruthein was killed by Donnell, the son of Con O'Donnell, in revenge of his brother, Calvagh, son of Con, whom he Manus had slain some time before. It would have been better for him that he had not done this deed, for many evils redounded to them his family on account of it; for orders were given to Rury O'Donnell and all the Irish that were with him, to the captains who had come with him into the territory, and to Captain Guest, who had been in his company in Connaught, to pursue Niall, his brothers and people, and to plunder and prey them. He Rury did as he was ordered, so that not a single head of cattle was left with Niall's people, the others having carried off with them several thousand heads of cattle; so that vast numbers of those who were plundered died of cold and famine. Rury divided the preys, and gave their due proportions of them to the gentlemen who came in his army. Hugh Boy, the son of Con, was wounded in the ankle; and he was sent to Crannog-na-nDuini in Ros-Guill, in the Tuathas, to be healed. The same Hugh was taken prisoner by the English, and conveyed to Derry, to be confined; and the Governor declared that he would not liberate him until the person who committed the slaying (Donnell, son of Con) should come in his ransom. Niall and Donnell afterwards repaired to the Governor on parole of honour; and Hugh Boy was set at liberty, and Donnell detained.


Niall O'Donnell afterwards went to England, to solicit pardon for his offences, and to obtain the reward for his service and aid to the Crown of England from King James. Rury O'DonneIl also went to England from the same motives, although the services of both to the Crown were very different indeed. Each of them exhibited his right to Tirconnell. The King and Council then ordered that Rury O'Donnell should be Earl over Tirconnell, and that Niall should possess his own patrimonial inheritance, namely, that tract of country extending from Leachta-Siubháine, westwards, to Seascann-Lubanach, lying on both


sides of the River Finn. Both then returned to Ireland in peace and amity, matters having been thus settled between them.


Niall Garv, the son of Rury, son of Egneghan, son of Egneghan, son of Naghtan, son of Turlough-an-Fhiona O'Donnell, died.


Conor, the son of Donough, son of Murrough, son of Turlough O'Brien, died in the month of December.


An intolerable famine prevailed all over Ireland.