PATRICK COSGROVE received his PhD from NUI Maynooth where he subsequently held a postdoctoral research fellowship. He has lectured and published on various facets of the Irish land question and is the author of The Ranch War in Riverstown, Co. Sligo, 1908 (2012) as well as articles in leading academic journals including Irish Historical Studies and the Historical Journal. TERENCE DOOLEY is Associate Professor in the History Department and Director of the Centre for the Study of Historic Irish Houses and Estates at NUI Maynooth. He is the author of several books on the Irish country house and the Irish land question. Most recently, he co-edited a collection of essays with Christopher Ridgway entitled The Irish Country House: Its Past, Present and Future (2010). KAROL MULLANEY-DIGNAM holds a PhD from NUI Maynooth where she has lectured on several aspects of Irish society, culture and heritage. Formerly an Irish Research Council Postdoctoral Fellow, she is the author of Music and dancing at Castletown, Co. Kildare, 1759-1821 (2011) as well as articles in academic journals, edited volumes, and the Encyclopaedia of Music in Ireland (2013).
For almost 800 years, from their arrival with the first wave of Anglo-Normans in 1169, the FitzGeralds - Earls of Kildare and, from 1766, Dukes of Leinster - were the pre-eminent noble family living in Ireland, dominating the social, political, economic and cultural landscapes. This collection of essays, by established and emerging scholars, draws together some of the most recent and specialised research on the family, providing original perspectives on various aspects of their aristocratic history. Individual contributions inform on how the family first settled in Kildare and rose to ascendancy and how they maintained political status through court connections in England and beyond. Thematically, the essays cover such topics as the architecture and material culture of the Big House, the creation of the great eighteenth-century aristocratic demesne and landscape at Carton, the final break-up of the family's estates and its subsequent economic decline in the twentieth century.They examine the contributions made by individual members of the family to the social and cultural spheres in Ireland and further afield; their interest in local as well as international concerns; their enthusiasm for the arts, music and dancing; the relationship between employers and servants, dukes and the Catholic Church, younger sons and radicalism, the latter exemplified in the life of one of the more famous members of the family, Lord Edward FitzGerald, a leader of the Society of United Irishmen and the 1798 Rebellion.
Preface and Acknowledgements, Foreword
- Hon. Desmond Guinness
List of Illustrations
Notes on Contributors
- The FitzGeralds
- A Survey History, 1169-2013
- The FitzGeralds and the Making of the Manor of Maynooth
Mary Ann Lyons
- The Kildare Ascendancy
- Mabel Browne, Countess of Kildare, and the Restoration of the House of Kildare, 1552-1610
- The Making of the Geraldines
- The Kildare FitzGeralds and their Early Historians
- Creating a Landscape
- Carton and its Setting
- 'French Horns Playing at Every Meal'
- Musical Activity at Carton, 1747-1895
- 'Till my Further Orders'
- Rules Governing Servants at Carton in the mid-Eighteenth Century
- Desiring to 'Look Sprucish'
- Objects in Context at Carton
William Laffan and Brendan Rooney
- Painting Carton
- The 2nd Duke of Leinster, Thomas Roberts and William Ashford
- The 2nd Duke of Leinster and the Establishment of St Patrick's College, Maynooth
- Family Politics and Revolutionary Convictions
- The Career of Edward FitzGerald (1763-98)
- In the Shadow of the FitzGeralds
- Maynooth c.1700 to c.1900
- Whig Politics and the 3rd Duke of Leinster (1791-1874)
- A Middleman in the 1840s
- Charles Carey and the Leinster Estate
- 'Sacrificed for Ready Money'
- The Leinster Estate and the Irish Land Question, 1870-1908
- Lord Frederick FitzGerald (1857-1924) and Local Politics in County Kildare
- 'The Fairy Godfather as Regards the Estate'
- Henry Mallaby-Deeley and Carton, 1922-37
- The FitzGerald Legacy
‘This is a useful collection. It provides a reminder of the enduring capacity of the story of the lives and properties of the “big house” and their owners to illuminate the flow of Ireland’s history across a millennium.’
Irish Literary Supplement, Spring 2017
You can read the full review here
‘This is a valuable collection of essays from a conference held at Carton House in 2010 … A number of dominant themes emerge from the wide range of essays: the eminence of the FitzGeralds in the governance and representation of Ireland; the fluctuating political fortunes which successively sustained and undermined the family’s status; wealth, magnificence and conspicuous artistic display; astute matrimonial strategy and the role of women in cementing and sustaining the dynasty; the life of the estate, its tenants and employees, and in particular the relationship between Carton and Maynooth.’
Christine Casey, TCD, Irish Economic and Social History, Volume XLII, 2015
You can read the full review here
‘[This book] presents a remarkable reservoir of research, which will prove especially valuable to those seeking an introduction to the Geraldine legacy … Perhaps the most attractive aspect of this collection, however, is that while it covers a vast historical period, it also offers a strikingly intimate window into life at the Carton Demesne … this delightful collection, with its 27 beautiful colour prints, is a pleasurable and informative read, which is sure to provide a valuable resource for both novices and those already acquainted with the illustrious Geraldine tradition.’
Études Irlandaises, June 2015
‘The history of the British aristocracy in the twentieth century is well chronicled, the Irish much less so. Part of the explanation for this lied in the political events in Ireland in the first decades of the twentieth century, in which nationalist and catholic revolutionary ideology wrote out the historic role of the Anglo-Irish class … But that situation is now changing … No one has made a more important scholarly contribution to this change than Terence Dooley … This is an excellent book about much more than a single Irish aristocratic family.’
Allen Warren, Family & Community History, April 2015
‘In the concluding essay in this book on the FitzGeralds of Carton House, Christopher Ridgway … remarks that it is hard to think of any family or estate in Ireland that could command such levels of social, political and cultural influence for so many centuries.’
Studies, Spring 2015
‘This collection of essays – nineteen in all – covers the FitzGeralds, the pre-eminent noble family in Ireland and the Earls of Kildare. Maynooth and Carton House, as centres of the family power in different ways, also feature prominently, with chapters on the development and the early college of Maynooth and on the landscape, servants and material life of Carton.’
The Irish Story, February 2015
‘There is much of interest in this well-presented book that will hopefully encourage further research. It is a tribute to the authors, all of whom, with the help of their editors, have combined their scholarship to create a narrative that unfolds fairly seamlessly.’
Patricia McCarthy, Irish Arts Review, summer 2014
‘The most interesting essay on Carton is on the rules governing servants at the house in the mid-18th Century. The source for this information is a ‘household book’ which covers the period from the early 1760s to 1773.
In the Preface the Hon. Desmond Guinness expresses his disappointment at the neglect of the history of Irish landlords and their ‘Great Houses’.
With this book, blessed as it is with an excellent index, this neglect is somewhat redressed.’
Irish Catholic, 10 April 2014
Co-editor of Aspects of Irish Aristocratic Life Karol
Mullaney Dignam interviewed on KFM radio, May 2014
The launch of Aspects Irish Aristocratic Life in the NUIM library, 8 May 2014
Co-editor of Aspects of Irish Aristocratic Life Terence Dooley
on the Fitzgerald legacy and Carton House, RTÉ Radio One, May 2014