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Nobility and Newcomers in Renaissance Ireland
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Continuity and Change: Ormond's Leinster

As their rivals the Kildares fell from grace, the earls of Ormond rose to fill their place as the crown's Irish favorite. The greatest of the Ormond earls was Thomas "Black Tom" Butler (1531-1614), tenth earl of Ormond. He was a cousin of Queen Elizabeth and a man of immense wealth, connection, and diplomatic skill across cultural lines. While the earl's brothers in Tipperary took up arms against the government in 1569, Black Tom was staunchly loyal and helped to supress his rebellious brethren. Ormond spent many years at court in London and he also owned property in England. is proximity to the queen and near total power over his Irish territories aroused the envy of rivals on both islands.

Portrait of Thomas Butler, 16th century

Genealogies of earls of England and Ireland. Manuscript, 1581-ca. 1625

Toghaim Tomas rogha

Churchyard. A Scourge for Rebels. London, 1584

Edmund Spenser. The faerie queene. London, 1590

Leycesters commonwealth. Paris, 1584

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