Huge massive love to all my Kilkenny friends who travelled up from Waterford or took time off work, off life, off partners, off family to see me! I’m so bloody lucky to have met you all. I’m much like a stray cat you fed one time and now I keep coming back for more... see you soon!
It's the late 16th Century, and the England have been attempting to conquer Ireland for over 60 years following the rebellion of Silken Thomas in the 1530s.
Many attempts were made to establish a permanent seat of island-wide control most of which ended in failure, particularly those which used force (such as a Martial Law policy established by Queen Mary I). A new policy was drafted, named "surrender and regrant." The basis for this policy was that Gaelic Irish lords would surrender their land, armies and wealth to the English Crown only to have them all given back with the sole difference being that now upon the lords death the titles and lands would remain under ownership of England. This was an attempt to assimilate the Gaelic Nobles into the English Nobility, however more often than not issues arose through attempts to undermine the Gaelic Chief or line up lands for more suitable English heirs and nobles.
England also found that even under the new policy and strict rules the Gaelic Chiefs often refused to adhere to their new overlord's will, with some rebelling against certain economic or religious policies, seeing the English King as no different to a weaker High King of Ireland who could be ignored or even broken away from should he be unwilling to represent his subjects.
A longer term solution came in plantations, whereby English people were settled along parts of Ireland safely under English control in the 1550s. The idea was that these people would spread English culture and lingo across Ireland and replace the Gaelic population, allowing easy control of the land. Initially the efforts were only a small success, and monetary issues arose when standing Gaelic Lords sued over the encroachment of their lands. Several rebellions also broke out against this policy, and the notion of land being confiscated left many Irish Nobles dissatisfied.
In the North, however, one man was preparing to put the concerns and complaints of the Gaelic Lords to England in a way they couldn't ignore.
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