The Treaty of
Limerick (Irish: Conradh Luimnigh) ended the Williamite
War in Ireland between the Jacobites and the supporters of William of
Orange and concluded the Siege of Limerick. The treaty really
consisted of two treaties, both of which were signed on 3 October
1691. Reputedly they were signed on the Treaty Stone, an irregular
block of limestone which once served as a mounting block for horses.
This stone is now displayed on a pedestal in Limerick, put there to
prevent souvenir hunters from taking pieces of it. Because of the
Limerick is sometimes known as the Treaty City.
2 The Military Articles
3 The Civil Articles
4 The Williamite Settlement forfeitures
5 See also
8 External links
After his victory at the
Battle of Boyne
Battle of Boyne in July 1690, William III had
Declaration of Finglas which offered a pardon to Jacobite
soldiers but excluded their senior officers from its provisions. This
encouraged the Jacobite leaders to continue fighting and they won a
major victory during the 1691 Siege of Limerick. However, defeats the
following year at the
Battle of Aughrim
Battle of Aughrim and the second siege of
Limerick left the Williamites victorious. Nonetheless the terms they
offered to Jacobite leaders at
Limerick were considerably more
generous than those a year earlier at Finglas.
The Military Articles
These articles dealt with the treatment of the disbanded Jacobite
army. Under the treaty, Jacobite soldiers in formed regiments had the
option to leave with their arms and flags for
France to continue
serving under James II in the Irish Brigade. Some 14,000 Jacobites
chose this option and were marched south to Cork where they embarked
on ships for France, many of them accompanied by their wives and
children. Individual soldiers wanting to join the French, Spanish or
Austrian armies also emigrated in what became known as the Flight of
the Wild Geese.
The Jacobite soldiers also had the option of joining the Williamite
army. 1,000 soldiers chose this option. The Jacobite soldiers thirdly
had the option of returning home which some 2,000 soldiers chose.
This treaty had twenty-nine articles, which were agreed upon between
Lieutenant-General Ginkle, Commander-in-Chief of the English army, and
the Lieutenant-Generals D'Usson and de Tessé, Commanders-in-Chief of
the Irish army. The articles were signed by D'Usson, Le Chevalier de
Tesse, Latour Montfort,
Patrick Sarsfield (Earl of Lucan), Colonel
Nicholas Purcell of Loughmoe, Mark Talbot, and Piers, Viscount Galmoy.
The Civil Articles
These articles protected the rights of the defeated Jacobite landed
gentry who chose to remain in Ireland, most of whom were Catholics.
Their property was not to be confiscated so long as they swore
allegiance to William III and Mary II, and Catholic noblemen were to
be allowed to bear arms. William required peace in Ireland and was
allied to the
Papacy in 1691 within the League of Augsburg.
This Treaty contained thirteen articles which were agreed upon between
the Right Honourable Sir Charles Porter, and Thomas Coningsby, 1st
Earl Coningsby, Lord Justice of Ireland, and his Excellency the Baron
de Ginkel, Lieutenant General and Commander-in-Chief of the English
army, and the Right Honourable Patrick Sarsfield, Earl of Lucan,
Piers, Viscount Galmoy, Colonel Nicholas Purcell of Loughmoe, Colonel
Nicholas Cusack, Sir Toby Butler (who was the actual draftsman),
Colonel Garrett Dillon, and Colonel John Brown. The treaty was signed
by Charles Porter, Thomas Coningsby, and Baron de Ginkel, and
witnessed by Scavenmoer, H. Mackay, and T. Talmash.
It has been said that "the ink was not dry on the Treaty" before the
English broke it—the civil articles were not honoured by the
victorious Williamite government. The few Catholic landowners who
took the oath in 1691-93 remained protected, including their
descendants. Those who did not were known as "non-jurors", and their
loyalty to the new regime was automatically suspect. Some managed to
have an outlawry specifically reversed, such as the 8th Viscount
Dillon in 1694, or the Earl of Clanricarde in 1701.
Papacy again recognized James II as the lawful king of Ireland
from 1693. From 1695 this provoked a series of harsh penal laws to be
enacted by the Parliament of Ireland, to make it difficult for the
Irish Catholic gentry who had not taken the oath by 1695 to remain
Catholic. The laws were extended for political reasons by the Dublin
administration during the
War of the Spanish Succession
War of the Spanish Succession (1701–14),
and reforms did not start until the 1770s.
It is often thought that
Limerick was the only treaty between
Jacobites and Williamites. A similar treaty had been signed on the
Galway on 22 July 1691, but without the strict loyalty
oath required under the Treaty of Limerick. The
Galway garrison had
been organised by the mostly-Catholic landed gentry of counties Galway
and Mayo, who benefited from their property guarantees in the
following century. The
Limerick treaty marked the end of the war.
The Williamite Settlement forfeitures
In the following 8 years further confiscations were made from the
continuing adherents to the Jacobite cause, and also further pardons
were granted. The Commissioners of Forfeitures reported to the Irish
House of Commons in December 1699 as follows:
3,921 named persons had been outlawed initially, who owned
that produced rents of £211,623 a year, and were worth £4,685,130.10
491 had been pardoned in accord with the treaties at Cavan and
Limerick, and 792 otherwise; Some of the remaining 2,638 persons or
their families had had property restored.
Ultimately the total amount received by the Commissioners was: 752,953
acres paying rents of £135,793 p.a., worth £1,699,343. A further
£300,000 in chattels and £1092,000 of forestry had been seized,
along with several hundred individual houses.
History of Limerick
List of treaties
Sieges of Limerick
Battle of the Boyne
Irish of Nantes
Rolls Office, Ireland (12 March 1828). Copy of the Letters Patent
wherein the Civil Articles for the Surrender of the Treaty of
Limerick, in the Year 1691, were ratified and exemplified by King
William the Third and Queen Anne. Sessional papers. 22 169. House of
Commons. Retrieved 11 September 2016.
^ University College Cork - The Treaty of Limerick, 1691
Limerick City: A Bit of History - The Treaty of
2004-11-03 at the Wayback Machine.
^ Lenihan 1866, p. 386.
^ Appointed under 10 William III., c. 9; report of 16 December 1699
^ Simms J.G., The Williamite Confiscation in Ireland (London 1956)
Lenihan, Maurice (1866), Limerick; Its History and Antiquities,
Ecclesiastical, Civil, and Military: From the Earliest Ages, with
Copious Historical, Archaeological, Topographical, and Genealogical
Notes, Hodges, Smith, and Company, p. 286
BBC History: The Williamite Settlement
History of the Treat