Battle of Newtownbutler

Margaret Anne Cusack
start of chapter | Chapter XXXIII

The day on which the siege of Derry was raised, the royalists met with a severe reverse at Newtownbutler. They were under the command of Lord Mountcashel, when attacked by the Enniskilleners. The dragoons had already been dispirited by a reverse at Lisnaskea; and a word of command [7] which was given incorrectly, threw the old corps into confusion, from which their brave leader in vain endeavoured to rally them. Colonel Wolseley, an English officer, commanded the Enniskilleners; and the cruelties with which they hunted down the unfortunate fugitives, has made the name almost a byword of reproach. Five hundred men plunged into Lough Erne to escape their fury, but of these only one was saved. Lord Mountcashel was taken prisoner, but he escaped eventually, and fled to France. Sarsfield, who commanded at Sligo, was obliged to retire to Athlone; and the victorious Williamites remained masters of that part of the country.


[7] Command.—Mountcashel gave the word "right face;" it was repeated "right about face." Colonel Hamilton and Captain Lavallin were tried in Dublin by court-martial for the mistake, and the latter was shot.