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Turmoil in the Pale: the Decline of Kildare



The English Pale was an ill-defined legislative zone create in 1494 to protect Dublin's hinterland from what lay beyond. From its inception, the Pale was a site of cultural hybridity, political negotiation, and occasional rebellion. Most local nobles were of mixed English-Irish ancestry and they had to maintain allegiance to the distant English crown while living among the Gaelic neighbors, who had their own established language, laws and traditions. After Henry VIII's break with Rome, the nobles also had to defend their Catholicism against a state-sponsored Protestantism. The greatest of these families was the Fitzgeralds, earls of Kildare, who were among the most powerful and wealthy lords in all of England and Ireland. Until their rebellion in the 1530s, they regularly served as the English crown's cheif governors in Ireland.




Stanyhurst. ... De rebus in Hibernia gestis ... 1584
 

Virgil. Aeneid, Books 1-4. London, 1583
 

Portrait of "The Fair Geraldine," 16th century
 

Songes and sonets written by the right honorable Lorde Henry Haward late Earle of Surrey, and others. London, 1574


Thomas Nash. Unfortunate traveller, or The life of Jacke Wilton. London, 1594
 

Raphael Holinshed. The firste volume of the Chronicles of England, Scotlande, and Irelande. London, 1577
 




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