Monday, July 19, 2010

A Lady of No Reputation Who Was Simply Amazing, Part IV

England herself carried the next conflict with Ireland to Ireland, by fighting the main battles of the Glorious Revolution there. When King James II bore a Catholic son, Protestant nobles invited William of Orange to come to England and rule in James' place.

James escaped to France, and then sailed for Ireland with French troops. There he formed a coalition of French Catholic soldiers, Protestant Royalists and Irish Catholics. He restored Irish freedom and lands taken by Cromwell.

As Protestant Derry was besieged, an English force loyal to William of Orange arrived and relieved Derry, and increased its numbers from the Protestant population in and around Derry.

In July, 1689, the army of James at Newtownbutler was easily routed by William's army. But then, in the north, a large Williamite force dissolved from a scorched earth policy by the Catholics, and from cold and disease and guerilla attacks.

In 1690 William himself formed a giant Protestant army in the north, and marched on the Catholic army's camp on the Boyne River. Casualties were light, but the Catholic forces were forced to retreat.

Discouraged, James returned to France, abandoning the Irish, who forever after referred to him as "Seamus an Chaca," "James the Shit."

The Irish successfully repulsed a fierce Protestant attack in Limerick, in August, 1690, but lost a bloody battle to the Williamite army at Galway in 1691, quickly followed by the Catholic surrender of Limerick the same year.

The Treaty of Limerick offered generous terms to Irish Catholics swearing allegiance to King William, but the Protestant Parliament in Ireland refused to ratify the treaty, and recommenced oppression of the Catholics.

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