THE BUTLERS OF ORMONDE (COOTMTED).
TAMES BUTLER, the restored Earl of Ormonde, made Ire- ei land his residence for the next succeeding years. In 1684 the young nobleman came into collision with the haughty Deputy., Wentworth, but the affair ended very differently from most of the encounters of the latter with the Irish nobility. A Parlia- ment having been summoned to meet at Dublin on the 14th of July, Wentworth, partly to prevent the bloodshed frequently arising from hasty quarrels among the hotheaded Anglo-Celta, and partly, no doubt, in order to mark more evaphaticaily the paramount authority of the Crown, issued a proclaniation that no member should enter the Castle with his sword. All obeyed the mandate except young Lord Ormonde, who told the Usher of the Black Rod, when he demanded his sword from him at the door of the Parliament-room, that he should have no sword of his except in his body. For this conduct he was called to account that evening by the Lord Deputy, when with great readiness he produced the King's writ, calling him to Parliament, cinctum cum gladio, or per cinctrum lit. On this unexpected answer Wentworth, after consulting with his friends Ratcliffe and Wandesford as to the course to be pursued towards the bold and ingenious recusant, seems to have seen with his usual clearness of judgment, that Ormonde was a man whom it would answer better to conciliate and secure to the interests of the Government than to attempt to crush, and so passed over the affront and took him into favour. On the 16th of December he recommended the King to introduce young Ormonde into the Privy Council, as a person of solid judgment, grave and sober carriage, and good affec- tion to His Majesty's service, and accordingly, on the 20th of January following, he was admitted into the Council. From this time Ormonde may be said to have devoted himself entirely to the service of the Crown, with all the unreserve which was compatible with personal honour and a strong feeling in favour of the Protestant faith. That he should be entirely successful in preserving these latter qualifications to his loyalty in the service of such a Prince as Charles was impossible, but he did so more nearly probably than any other man of character who espoused the Cavalier cause, and when we consider the insuperable difficulties of the task he had assigned to himself, it is wonderful that he should have steered his course as creditibly as he did. Ormonde was in truth essentially a Protestant Tory, sharing in the high notions of prerogative which were learnt in the school of Strafford, but in himself moderate, conciliatory, and as little arbitrary in his actions as a man acting on such views could be. In 1638 he was ap- pointed to the command of a troop of cuirassiers, on the 25th of May, 1639, made Custos Rotulorum of the county of Kilkenny, in 1640 advanced to the command of a regiment of horse, and on the 16th of September appointed Lieutenant-General of the Horse, at the pay of 4/. a day, and Commander-in-Chief of all the forces in Ireland during the absence of Strafford. The forces to the command of which he was thus raised were 8,000 Irish Catholics, collected by Wentworth with the purpose of coercing either the Scotch or English opponents of Royal authority, and with this force, drawn together by Ormonde to Carrickfergus, the Earl hovered in that part of Ireland which is nearest to the English coast during the whole summer ; but the compromise entered into with the Scots prevented any actual invasion on 0ra:wade's part. Notwithstanding Ormonde's close corres- pondence with Wentworth during these latter years, he seems to have so entirely avoided complicity in the Deputy's most illegal proceedings, that although he was at the head of this large force, which it appeared from the evidence on Strafford's trial the latter had advised the King in case of need to employ against Eng- land, no steps were taken in the Long Parliament against the Irish Earl. The Parliament, however, insisted on the troops being disbanded, and continually petitioned the King to that effect. But although this force figured as an element in the army plot of the following year which Pym's sagacity detected and thwarted, there was no pretence made at its disbanding until September, 1641, when one-half of it was said to be dispersed, while the remainder continued in their quarters at Carrickfergus ; arid the force was soon afterwards entirely disbanded, just too soon for Charles's new instructions to the Earls of Ormonde and Antrim that it should be kept together. The King, then in Scotland, ordered that it should be got together again and more levied, that the Irish Parliament (chiefly Catholics) should be induced to declare for the King against the Parliament of England, the whole kingdom set in motion for his service, and if the Lords Justices would not join the enterprise, their persons and those of all other men of importance who held aloof should be secured. Antrim, a weak, ambitious, restless man, was the King's real confidant in these schemes, Ormonde being exhorted "to unite in a strict and entire correspondence with him." Great obscurity hangs over the next stages of the business, but the King seems to have meanwhile been in close consultation with the Committee of the Irish Parliament which had come to London to act against Strafford. One of their members, Lord Dillon of Costelo (afterwards a leader of the Irish rebels) attended the King to Edinburgh, and then proceeded to Ireland in the beginning of October. The celebrated and controverted commission from the King to Sir Phelim O'Neile is dated from Edinburgh on the 1st of October, and sealed with the Great Seal of Scotland, and on the 22nd of October the Lords Justices received information that everything was prepared for the surprise of the castle of Dublin. by the Catholics the next day, and Sir Phelim O'Neile commenced_ the actual insurrection in Ulster by the surprise of the castle of Charlemont on this very 22nd of October. These facts, taken with the subsequent conduct of Charles, seem to point to but one conclusion, namely, that a movement had been planned by the King through Antrim with the disaffected Irish, which according to. Antrim himself the latter anticipated, took into their own hands and gave their own direction to, and hence that indirectly though not directly the King was responsible for the horrible tragedy which succeeded. That Ormonde knew more of the plan than. that part connected with getting together the disbanded army is not likely ; indeed the Parliament recognized the distinction be- tween him and Antrim in this respect. On the breaking out of the rebellion Ormonde was at his house at Carrick, and he received an express from the Lords Justices informing him of the discovery of the plot, advising him to stand upon his guard and to take the best provision he could for the safety of the country around him, and desiring him then to repair to Dublin with his troop of horse.. He was the same month named by the Parliament for Lieutenant- General, which appointment the King approved from Edinburgh on the 31st. The Earl commenced his campaign from Dublin on_ the 31st of January, 1642, and on the 15th of April gained a, signal victory at Kilrush over the Irish army under Lord Mount- garret, the head of the kindred branch of the Butlers, who had thrown himself into the ranks of the rebels. For this achievement. Ormonde received in August the thanks of the House of Commons„ accompanied with a jewel 6201. in value. The King, on his part, in order to secure him to his cause, by a Privy Scat dated at Not- tingham on the 23rd of August directed a full discharge to be. given him of what mortgages and debts he stood engaged for to. those in actual rebellion, and by patent of the 30th of the same month created him Marquis of Ormonde, with a fresh commission, no longer in subordination to the nominal Lord-Lieutenant, the Earl of Leicester, but directly from the King. In all other respects Charles by signet virtually superseded Leicester (whom he kept on various pretexts in England) in favour of Orinonde. This favour shown to Ormonde by the King by degree* roused the suspicions of the Parliament, who knew the Royalist tendencies of the Marquis, and they sent over commissioners to examine and confirm the Protestantism of Ormonde's. troops, and two of their members, Goodwin and Reynolds„ to co-operate with the Lords Justices. But in February, 1643, Ormonde found himself strong enough to send them hack to Eng- land, and then the King dismissed Parsons, one of the Lords Justices, and substituted Sir Henry Tichborne for him in April: Soon after Ormonde, acting on the King's instructions, committed to prison Parsons and Sir John Temple, Master of the Rolls. In January, 1643, negotiations had been entered into between Ormonde, Clanricarde, and others, on the part of the King, and the Catholic Confederates, as they then called themselves. These, though not entirely dropped, led to no immediate result, and on the 18th of March Ormonde, who was again in the field, gained a victory over General Preston. The negotiations with the Catholics were then renewed, during the months of April, May, July, and August. Ormonde refused to yield on certain points which he said were equivalent to the entire destruction of Protestantism, but at length the Irish Catholics conceded these points, and a treaty of Cessation for a. year was signed on the 15th of September, 1613, the Confederates agreeing to grant an aid to Charles of 30,000/. The King then dismissed Leicester from his office of Lord-Lieutenant, and appointed Ormonde in his stead, on the 13th of November, 1643. Ormonde was also directed to send over to England five regiments of the troops which would be no longer needed against the Irish to assist the King against the Parliament, but Sir Thomas Fair- fax disposed of them very effectually before Nantwich in Cheshire, and the only practical result to Charles of the Cessation was a great desertion from his cause among the Protestant Cavaliers in Eng- land. Ormonde had instructions to commence immediately on the Cessation negotiations with the Confederates for a peace and for a force to assist Charles in England. Accordingly the treaty began in September, but only continued a month, when it was deferred to the following year, in order to obtain fresh instructions from Charles. It made, however, scarcely any progress, owing to Ormonde's firmness on certain points affecting Protestantism and the Royal authority, and the Marquis seems to have found his posi- tion becoming intolerable, for he represented to the King that he found himself particularly unfit for the office enjoined him, sal
entreated that some other person might be named more proper to take upon him the government. But the Protestant part of Charles's Council in England, alarmed at the retirement of the only man who could be trusted to protect them against the Royal laxity of principle on these points, persuaded the King to decline the proffered resignation. Charles, however, seeing that Ormonde was not a fit tool for his purpose; determined to employ an independent agent, and entered on the celebrated Glamorgan negotiations, to which we have had already occasion more than once to refer. We will now therefore confine ourselves as closely as possible to Ormonde's own part in the affair. The King paved the way for the execution of Glamorgan's extraordinary commis- sion by a letter to Ormonde in Dec3mber, 1644, announcing that Glamorgan having business of , his own in Ireland, Charles had engaged him to further the peace there in all possible ways, and recommended him to the confidence of the Lord-Lieutenant. A few days after, and in the January following (1645), Glamorgan obtained two full commissions, and in March an additional warrant, authorizing him to treat and conclude with the Confederate Catho- lics, if upon necessity any terms were to be condescended to in which the Lord-Lieutenant could not so well be seen, as not fit for the King at present publicly to own ; he was therefore to proceed in the business with all possible secrecy. Glamorgan did not procure a passage to Ireland till July, was present at an interview at Dublin between Ormonde and the Irish delegates, and then proceeded to the head-quarters of the Confederates at Kilkenny. So little difficulty interposed in concluding the secret treaty that it was signed on the 25th of August, and was to be supplementary to the public treaty to be concluded by Ormonde, who was quite ignorant of this important addition to his terms, in which all the points he had stood out upon were conceded. But no sooner was the secret treaty signed than the Confederates began. to cavil at it, and to invent excuses to delay its execution, Ormonde's negotiations being also broken off in November. The arrival of a Nuncio from the Pope added to the delays, and he extorted on the 20th of December fresh concessions from Gla- morgan. All seemed now ready, when Lord Digby arrived in Ireland from the King's Council, and soon after his arrival some papers which had been found on the dead body of the Catholic Archbishop of Tuam, killed in a skirmish, and which revealed the secret Glamorgan negotiations, became public in England, and reached Digby's ears. He consulted with Ormonde, who was equally indignant with himself at the slight which had been cast on the King's ostensible advisers, and Glamorgan being in Dublin at the time, Digby formally accused him in the Privy Council of high treason, and moved that he should be taken into custody, which was done on the 26th of December.
Glamorgan remained in custody for a few weeks, and was then released on security and returned to Kilkenny, where a storm of dissatisfaction had arisen in the Confederate Council. The cause of his being allowed to return was that Ormonde had learned the King's real wishes, and had drawn aside, leaving Charles and his agent to act as they chose. In a public despatch to Ormonde and Digby the King had disowned Glamorgan's proceedings alto- gether,—in a private letter to Ormonde he assured that noble- man, upon the word of a Christian, he had never intended that Glamorgan should treat anything without his approbation, much less without his knowledge ; since beside the injury to Ormonde, he was always diffident of Glamorgan's judgment, though he could not have thought him so extremely weak as now to his cost he had found." But a sentence followed which gave Ormonde an insight into the King's real mind. "Albeit I have too just cause for the clearing of my honour ,to command you as I have done to prosecute Glamorgan. in a legal way, yet I will have you suspend the execution of any sentence against him till I am fully informed of all the proceedings, as I believe it was his misguided zeal more than any malice which brought this great misfortune on him and on us all." The King a few days afterwards addressed a letter to Glamorgan, intended to be seen by Ormonde and Digby, in which he blamed him in a modified manner as having suffered himself to be "abused," adding, "If you had advised with my Lord- Lieutenant (as you promise& me), all this might have been helped," and the expressions in the rest of the letter were studiously ambiguous. A few weeks later, when Glamorgan was again at liberty, the King (in February, 1646) pent a very different letter to him through trusty hands. The bearer was to explain why the King had not done in everything as Glamorgan desired, "Want of confidence being so far from being the cause, that I am every day more confirmed in the trust that I have in you, it not being In the power of any to make you suffer in my opinion by ill offices ;" and in April he wrote again, "As I doubt not but you have too much courage to be dismayed at the usage you have had, so I assure you my estimation of you is nothing diminished by it, but that it rather begets in me a desire of revenge and reparation to us both." In July the King expresses an earnest hope to the Earl that he may soon come into his hands and those of the Nuncio, "since all the rest I see despise me ; and if I do not say this from my heart, may God never restore me to my kingdoms in this world, nor give me eternal happiness in the next." Ormonde meanwhile had written to Glamorgan on the 11th of February, 1646 :—" My affections and interests are so much tied to His Majesty's cause, that it were madness in me to disgust any man who has power and inclination to relieve him in the sad con- dition he is in, and therefore your Lordship may securely go on in the ways you have proposed to yourself, without fear of interrup- tion from me, or my so much as inquiring into the means you work by." Thus, though in a dignified manner, Ormonde certainly sacrificed his duty to the Protestant cause to his loyalty to the King. His own open treaty was at length signed on the 28th of March, 1646, and in it the question of the penal laws against the Catholics was referred to "the King's generous favour and further concessions," which words were meant by the Confederates at least to refer to Glamorgan's secret treaty. The Nuncio, however, now insisted that both treaties should be at once published; Ormonde refused, and then in the close of October the Nuncio marched an army of 16,000 men against Dublin. Ormonde then resolved to re- trieve his dereliction of duty in allowing the secret treaty to go on, and made overtures to the Parliament for the surrender of Dublin, which he had not the means of holding unaided, to them, rather than to the Catholic Confederates. Accordingly he surrendered the town to the English Parliament on the 28th of July, 1647, and in August the new Parliamentary Governor, Michael Jones, entirely defeated the Confederate army near Dublin, and taking the field, gained other important successes. Ormonde meanwhile repaired to the King, who was then at Hampton Court. However, a change soon took place in the counsels of the Irish Confederates, the Nuncio's party, which sought complete separa- tion from the English Crown and a dependency on Rome or Spain, was overruled, and the Confederates resumed their negotia- tions with Charles through the Queen and Prince, and Ormonde was chosen as the man to conduct these negotiations. The Presbyterians also were anxious to effect a movement against their now triumphant rivals, the Independents, and the Irish part of the rising of 1648 was planned between Charles and Ormonde during the latter's visit to Hampton Court. Ormonde then repaired to France, concerted measures with the Queen and Prince, and after what proved fatal delays landed again at Cork on the 29th of September, 1648, where he was welcomed by Lord Inchiquin and many of the Irish Presbyterians, as well as the Confederate Catholics. The latter invited him to take up his abode at Kilkenny Castle, and on the 17th of January, 1649, a new treaty was concluded between them and the Royalist party, which conceded all the articles previously yielded by Glamorgan. Then came the news of the King's death, and Ormonde proclaimed Charles IL The party of the Nuncio, under Owen Roe O'Neile, the most gallant soldier of the Confederates, had broken off from the main body, and made a separate cessation of arms with Monk and Jones, but Ormonde contrived to overrun most of the country, and approached Dublin with a large army. It was, however, very miscellaneous and undisciplined, and on the 2nd of August, 1649, Jones, sallying out of Dublin, entirely defeated and effectually dispersed it. On the heels of this disaster Cromwell landed, and began instantly a career of victory which compelled Ormonde (who could not now meet him in the open field) to leave Ireland again on the 6th of December, 1650. Or- monde, thenceforth residing with one member or other of the exiled Royal family.on the Continent, continued to take an active part in their affairs. In 1654 he performed the good service of bringing off the young Duke of Gloucester from Paris, where the Queen was endeavouring to force him to become a Catholic. He had been excepted from pardon for life or estate by Cromwell's Act for the Settlement of Ireland. He served with the Spaniards in Flanders in 1657, and had a horse killed under him at Mardyke. In 1658 Charles sent him on a secret mission to England, where he concealed himself in the metropolis for three weeks, and then safely returned to his master at Bruges. Cromwell, it seems, knew of his presence and whereabouts, but suffered him to remain unarrested, till he one day told the converted Royalist, Lord Broghill, "If you have a mind to save your old acquaintance, let him know I am informed
where he is and what he is doing." Ormonde hastened at once to avail himself of this generous hint, and left England, to which he did not return till the Restoration.