Sir Arthur Forbes, 1st Earl of Granard

From A Compendium of Irish Biography, 1878

« John Henry Foley | Index | Sir Arthur Forbes, 2nd Earl of Granard »

Forbes, Sir Arthur, 1st Earl of Granard, was born in 1623. [His father came to Ireland in 1620, from Scotland, and obtained large estates in the County of Longford: in 1632, while serving as an officer under Gustavus Adolphus, he was killed in a duel at Hamburg. His mother distinguished herself by the heroic defence of Castleforbes against the Confederate Irish in 1641.] He served Prince Charles in Scotland, and afterwards returned home, and was included in the Articles — not having fought against the Commonwealth in Ireland. After the Restoration he was appointed one of the Commissioners of the Court of Claims, and in 1663 helped to frustrate the plot of the discontented Parliamentary soldiers for seizing the castles of Dublin, Drogheda, and Derry. A few years afterwards he became a Privy-Councillor, and was made Marshal of the Army, with an allowance.

In 1675 he was raised to the peerage as Viscount Granard, and was afterwards made an Earl. He augmented the family estates. By James II. he was continued in the post of Marshal and Lieutenant-General of the Army in the North, and was appointed Lord-Justice in conjunction with the Archbishop of Armagh. Not agreeing to James's plans for the reorganization of the army, he was superseded in his commands by the Earl of Tirconnell. He joined William III., and in 1691 commanded one wing of the army that reduced Sligo and other towns. He died at Castleforbes, in the County of Longford, in 1696, aged about 73. He is described as "a statesman as well as a soldier, who understood the interests of Ireland perfectly well. He was wise and experienced in publick affairs; upright, frank, and generous."

Sources

153. Granard, Earls of, Memoirs: Edited by the Earl of Granard. London, 1868.

216. Lodge's Peerage of Ireland, Revised and Enlarged by Mervyn Archdall. 7 vols. Dublin, 1789.

« John Henry Foley | Index | Sir Arthur Forbes, 2nd Earl of Granard »