De Burgos and Geraldines

Margaret Anne Cusack
start of chapter | Chapter XXI

The two great families of De Burgo and Geraldine demand a special mention. The former, who were now represented by Richard de Burgo (the Red Earl), had become so powerful, that they took precedence even of the Lord Justice in official documents. In 1286 the Earl led a great army into Connaught, destroying the monasteries and churches, and "obtaining sway in every place through which he passed." This nobleman was the direct descendant of FitzAldelm de Burgo, who had married Isabella, a natural daughter of Richard Coeur de Lion, and widow of Llewellyn, Prince of Wales. Walter de Burgo became Earl of Ulster in right of his wife, Maud, daughter of the younger Hugh de Lacy. The Red Earl's grandson, William, who was murdered, in 1333, by the English of Ulster, and whose death was most cruelly revenged, was the third and last of the De Burgo Earls of Ulster. The Burkes of Connaught are descended from William, the younger brother of Walter, the first Earl.