Thomas FitzGerald, 7th Earl of Kildare

FitzGerald, Thomas, 7th Earl of Kildare, succeeded his father in 1427. He more than once acted as Lord-Deputy to the Duke of York, who as far as possible divided his favours between the FitzGeralds and the Butlers. When the Duke fell at the battle of Wakefield, several members of both families were slain under his banners. As Deputy the Earl held several parliaments, at Naas, Drogheda, and elsewhere; he also acted as Lord-Chancellor. In 1467 he and his brother-in-law the Earl of Desmond were attainted "for alliance, fosterage, and alterage with the King's Irish enemies." Desmond was beheaded; but Kildare pleaded his own cause before the King, had the attainder reversed, and the same year was appointed Lord-Justice. He established the "Brothers of St. George," the only standing army of the Pale, consisting of 120 mounted archers, 40 horsemen, and 40 pages; the archers received sixpence, the horsemen fivepence, per diem. The object of the fraternity was to resist the "Irish enemies and English rebels." The Earl died 25th March 1477, and was buried beside his father.


202. Kildare, The Earls of, and their Ancestors: from 1057 to 1773, with Supplement: Marquis of Kildare. 2 vols. Dublin, 1858-'62.