Miler FitzHenry

From A Compendium of Irish Biography, 1878

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FitzHenry, Miler, grandson of Henry I. by the Welsh princess, Nesta [See NESTA], one of the principal Anglo-Norman invaders of Ireland, was in 1199 appointed Lord-Justice by King John. This post he held until 1203, and again from 1205 to 1208. By his wars in Connaught he dispossessed the native chieftains, and obtained large tracts of country. He lowered the overweening power of De Burgh, and deprived him of the government of Limerick. On his death, in 1220, he was interred in the Abbey of Great Connell, County of Kildare, which he had built. He married a niece of De Lacy.

He is thus described by Giraldus Cambrensis: "Miler was of a dark complexion, with black eyes and a stern, piercing look. Below the middle height, for his size he was a man of great strength. Broad-chested and not corpulent, his arms and other limbs were bony and muscular, and not encumbered with fat. An intrepid and adventurous soldier, he never shrank from any enterprise, whether singly or in company, and was the first in the onset, the last in retreat. . . He would have deserved the highest praise if he had been less ambitious of worldly honours, and had paid due reverence to the Church of Christ, not only by preserving its ancient rights and privileges inviolate, but also by hallowing their new and sanguinary conquest, in which so much blood had been shed, and which was stained by the slaughter of a Christian people, by liberally contributing some portion of their spoils for religious uses."

Sources

5. Anglo-Normans, History of the Invasion of Ireland by the: Gerald H. Supple. Dublin, 1856.

148. Giraldus Cambrensis: Topography, and History of the Conquest in Ireland: Forester and Wright. London, 1863.

196. Irishmen, Lives of Illustrious and Distinguished, Rev. James Wills, D.D. 6 vols. or 12 parts. Dublin, 1840-'7.

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