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The Treaty of Limerick

Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the impact of the treaty ending the Williamite War in 1691, with the disbanding of the Jacobite army and assertion of rights for the defeated gentry

Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the 1691 peace treaty that ended the Williamite War in Ireland, between supporters of the deposed King James II and the forces of William III and his allies. It followed the battles at Aughrim and the Boyne and sieges at Limerick, and led to the disbanding of the Jacobite army in Ireland, with troops free to follow James to France for his Irish Brigade. The Catholic landed gentry were guaranteed rights on condition of swearing loyalty to William and Mary yet, while some Protestants thought the terms too lenient, it was said the victors broke those terms before the ink was dry.

The image above is from British Battles on Land and Sea, Vol. I, by James Grant, 1880, and is meant to show Irish troops leaving Limerick as part of The Flight of the Wild Geese - a term used for soldiers joining continental European armies from C16th-C18th.


Jane Ohlmeyer
Chair of the Irish Research Council and Erasmus Smith’s Professor of Modern History at Trinity College Dublin

Dr Clare Jackson
Senior Tutor, Trinity Hall, and Faculty of History, University of Cambridge


Thomas O'Connor
Professor of History at Maynooth University

Producer: Simon Tillotson

Available now

53 minutes

Last on

Thu 7 Nov 2019 21:30


Jane Ohlmeyer at Trinity College Dublin

Clare Jackson at the University of Cambridge

Thomas O'Connor at Maynooth University

The text of the Treaty of Limerick, 1691

The Penal Laws passed by the Irish Parliament after the Treaty of Limerick

The Battle of the Boyne

The Jacobite-Williamite War – The Irish Story

Treaty of Limerick - Wikipedia



John Childs, The Williamite Wars in Ireland, 1688–1691 (Hambledon Continuum, 2007)

Tim Harris, Revolution: The Great Crisis of the British Monarchy (Allen Lane, 2006)

Alvin Jackson (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Modern Irish History (Oxford University Press, 2014), especially ‘The War of the Three Kings, 1688-1691’ by Robert Armstrong

James Kelly (ed.), Cambridge History of Ireland Vol III (Cambridge University Press, 2018), especially ‘Irish Jacobitism, 1691-1790’ by Vincent Morley, ‘The Politics of Protestant Ascendancy, 1730-90’ by James Kelly and  ‘The Catholic Church and Catholics in an era of sanctions and restraints, 1690-1790’ by Thomas O’Connor and ‘The Irish in Europe in the Eighteenth century 1691-1815’ by Liam Chambers

Pádraig Lenihan, Consolidating Conquest: Ireland 1603-1727 (Routledge, 2014)

Pádraig Lenihan, The Last Cavalier: Richard Talbot 1631-91 (University College Dublin Press, 2003)

T.W. Moody, F.X Martin and F.J. Byrne (eds.), A New History of Ireland Vol III: Early Modern Ireland 1534-1691 (Oxford University Press, 1976), especially ‘The War of the Two Kings 1685-91’ by J.G. Simms

Thomas O’Connor, Irish Voices from the Spanish Inquisition (Palgrave, 2016)

Jane Ohlmeyer (ed.), Cambridge History Of Ireland Vol II (Cambridge University Press, 2018), especially ‘The Down survey and the Cromwellian Land Settlement’ by Micheál Ó Siochrú and David Brown

J. G. Simms, The Treaty of Limerick (Dundalgan Press, 1965)

Maureen Wall, The Penal Laws, 1691–1760: Church and State from the Treaty of Limerick to the Accession of George III (Dundalgan Press, 1961)



  • Thu 7 Nov 2019 09:00
  • Thu 7 Nov 2019 21:30

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