Corpus of Electronic Texts Edition
The Flight of the Earls (Author: Tadhg Ó Cianáin)

section 111

It was a wearisome and unusual experience for the Earl of Tyrconnell, the son of Ó Néill, and the son of Ó Domhnaill, to spend so long without moving out of Rome. They proposed and determined that they should leave it for a time, and should go to make holiday and take a change of air. The three set out, taking with them a page and a footman. Alas! their trip was attended with ill luck and misfortune. They went to a certain town on the sea coast named Ostia, on the bank of the Tiber, fifteen miles from Rome. They stayed for two days and nights on both sides of the river. The Reverend Doctor Domhnall Ó Cearbhaill followed them. These noblemen next returned to Rome. Their journey to Ostia was no source of rejoicing to their friends, for all are agreed that that particular place is one of the worst and most unhealthy for climate in all Italy. Indeed, it was not long until it proved so to them, for the Earl took a hot, fiery, violent fever on the eighteenth of the same month in 1608, the day of the week being Friday. On Saturday, the following day, Cathbharr, the son of Ó Domhnaill, caught the same fever. On the Monday afterwards, the Baron was stricken with it, and Domhnall Ó Cearbhaill in a short time after him. The page and the footman who were with them both got the fever in a very short time. The Earl had a violent sickness and great pain during a period of eleven days. He made a full confession and received the Holy Sacrament. His soul separated from his body and he died, by the grace of God and the Church, after victory over the world and the devil, about midnight on Monday. On the following day,


Tuesday the twenty-eighth of July, the feast of Saint Martha, the Earl was buried in the monastery of San Pietro Montorio. A large and splendid funeral in grand procession was ordered by his Holiness the Pope, and on either side of the body there were large numbers of lighted waxen torches and sweet, sad, sorrowful singing. It was enwrapped in the habit of Saint Francis, as he himself had ordered that it should be put about him. Muiris, the Earl's page, died on the third of August. On the eighth of the same month Domhnall Ó Cearbhaill, Doctor of Divinity, the son of Uaithne Ó Cearbhaill of Magh Dreithne in Urmhumha, died et cetera.