The Twilight Lords: Elizabeth I and the First Irish Holocaust

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Return to Book Page. Get A Copy. Hardcover , pages. More Details Original Title. Other Editions 6. Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about The Twilight Lords , please sign up. Interested in this book -- but curious why the title listed both on Goodreads as well as on Amazon does not match what is written on the cover, which is " See 1 question about The Twilight Lords…. Lists with This Book.

The Twilight Lords: Elizabeth I and the First Irish Holocaust

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Sort order. Jul 27, Jan-Maat added it Shelves: 20th-century , british-isles , early-modern-history. Don't be put off by the alternative subtitle the first Irish Holocaust that some editions appear to suffer from, this is actually an unsensational and serious history of the Elizabethan wars in Ireland suitable for the general reader and written in an easy engaging style and unlike the promise implicit in that alternative subtitle fairly balanced, unless of course there have been later editions with radically revised texts.

The narrative runs from the fighting between the Earl of Ormond and the Don't be put off by the alternative subtitle the first Irish Holocaust that some editions appear to suffer from, this is actually an unsensational and serious history of the Elizabethan wars in Ireland suitable for the general reader and written in an easy engaging style and unlike the promise implicit in that alternative subtitle fairly balanced, unless of course there have been later editions with radically revised texts. The narrative runs from the fighting between the Earl of Ormond and the English in the south of Ireland, to the long war against the O'Neils in the north of Ireland and the abortive Spanish landings in the west with a detour chapter on Edmund Spenser who was one of the English colonists in the south.

The later books of The Faerie Queene and " Colin Clouts Come Home Againe " were written while Spenser was active in the colonisation of Munster, and it is in the chapter of Spenser that I got a sense of how the intensity of the fighting was due to the differences in how the Irish had been using the land in a largely pastoral economy and the attempts of the English to impose patterns of land usage that they were familiar with from Devon and the rest of the West country the source apparently of many of the settlers. My lasting impression from this book is indeed of how love was the basis of vicious hostilities, love of hedgerows and wheat fields versus love of grazing cattle and whiskey drunk from egg shells.

Eventually as Ormond and his supporters are beaten they drift off into legend - the Twilight Lords of the title.

The chapters on the O'Neils are fascinating, particularly compared with the similar though much earlier attempts of the Princes of Gwynedd to transform their little polity in North Wales into something capable of competing against the English Crown. In this case the O'Neils sought to strengthen their lordship by transforming traditional law and by cosying up to Lord Burghley view spoiler [ well beloved advisor and de facto chief minister to Queen Elizabeth I hide spoiler ] whose support for the O'Neils plans to build a brand new Tudor style great house with big Tudor roof, chimneys, and windows with acres of lead flashings allowed them to stock pile enough lead to keep their forces well supplied with bullets for a few years.

The following generation would see Ulster pacified view spoiler [ though as one notes, not conclusively hide spoiler ] through mass plantation of Protestant settlers from Scotland - fresh from that country's late religious wars. View all 5 comments. Mar 20, Walter Maier rated it it was amazing. Definitely a book I need to read again.


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In fact it's more of a hobbyist's labour of love, concentrating very much on the sequence of events in Munster and trying boldly if not completely successfully to tie England's Irish policy to Queen Elizabeth's state of mind. I actually found Berleth's exposition of the detail of events pretty good, and enjoyed his chapter on literature, especially The Faerie Queene which I have been reading at not quite a canto per day since July.

But the internal chronology is a bit weird, jumping back and forth through decades thus weakening the basic story which is of cycles of devastation and resettlement , and the entire Ulster war and Flight of the Earls is tacked on very hastily in a final chapter. He also combines a juicy eye for the personal detail with less convincing psychoanalysis of some of the key players, though I suppose that's a game we can all play. The maps are disappointing as well. Mar 26, D Hendrix rated it really liked it.

Truly the only shortfall of this book is the limited accounting of the Nine Years war. The author goes into great detail on the Desmond wars. By contrast, the Nine Years War is almost an afterthought. The Nine Years War changed the face of Ireland for the next four hundred years, to leave out so much seemed a bit questionable. Apr 29, Jorja Grael rated it really liked it. Enlarge cover. Error rating book. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :.

Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Get A Copy.

The Twilight Lords: An Irish Chronicle by Richard J. Berleth

Hardcover , pages. More Details Original Title. Other Editions 6. Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about The Twilight Lords , please sign up. Interested in this book -- but curious why the title listed both on Goodreads as well as on Amazon does not match what is written on the cover, which is " See 1 question about The Twilight Lords….

Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 3. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Jul 27, Jan-Maat added it Shelves: 20th-century , british-isles , early-modern-history. Don't be put off by the alternative subtitle the first Irish Holocaust that some editions appear to suffer from, this is actually an unsensational and serious history of the Elizabethan wars in Ireland suitable for the general reader and written in an easy engaging style and unlike the promise implicit in that alternative subtitle fairly balanced, unless of course there have been later editions with radically revised texts.

The narrative runs from the fighting between the Earl of Ormond and the Don't be put off by the alternative subtitle the first Irish Holocaust that some editions appear to suffer from, this is actually an unsensational and serious history of the Elizabethan wars in Ireland suitable for the general reader and written in an easy engaging style and unlike the promise implicit in that alternative subtitle fairly balanced, unless of course there have been later editions with radically revised texts.

The narrative runs from the fighting between the Earl of Ormond and the English in the south of Ireland, to the long war against the O'Neils in the north of Ireland and the abortive Spanish landings in the west with a detour chapter on Edmund Spenser who was one of the English colonists in the south. The later books of The Faerie Queene and " Colin Clouts Come Home Againe " were written while Spenser was active in the colonisation of Munster, and it is in the chapter of Spenser that I got a sense of how the intensity of the fighting was due to the differences in how the Irish had been using the land in a largely pastoral economy and the attempts of the English to impose patterns of land usage that they were familiar with from Devon and the rest of the West country the source apparently of many of the settlers.

My lasting impression from this book is indeed of how love was the basis of vicious hostilities, love of hedgerows and wheat fields versus love of grazing cattle and whiskey drunk from egg shells. Eventually as Ormond and his supporters are beaten they drift off into legend - the Twilight Lords of the title. The chapters on the O'Neils are fascinating, particularly compared with the similar though much earlier attempts of the Princes of Gwynedd to transform their little polity in North Wales into something capable of competing against the English Crown.

In this case the O'Neils sought to strengthen their lordship by transforming traditional law and by cosying up to Lord Burghley view spoiler [ well beloved advisor and de facto chief minister to Queen Elizabeth I hide spoiler ] whose support for the O'Neils plans to build a brand new Tudor style great house with big Tudor roof, chimneys, and windows with acres of lead flashings allowed them to stock pile enough lead to keep their forces well supplied with bullets for a few years.

The following generation would see Ulster pacified view spoiler [ though as one notes, not conclusively hide spoiler ] through mass plantation of Protestant settlers from Scotland - fresh from that country's late religious wars. View all 5 comments. Mar 20, Walter Maier rated it it was amazing. Definitely a book I need to read again. In fact it's more of a hobbyist's labour of love, concentrating very much on the sequence of events in Munster and trying boldly if not completely successfully to tie England's Irish policy to Queen Elizabeth's state of mind. I actually found Berleth's exposition of the detail of events pretty good, and enjoyed his chapter on literature, especially The Faerie Queene which I have been reading at not quite a canto per day since July.

But the internal chronology is a bit weird, jumping back and forth through decades thus weakening the basic story which is of cycles of devastation and resettlement , and the entire Ulster war and Flight of the Earls is tacked on very hastily in a final chapter. He also combines a juicy eye for the personal detail with less convincing psychoanalysis of some of the key players, though I suppose that's a game we can all play. The maps are disappointing as well. Mar 26, D Hendrix rated it really liked it. Truly the only shortfall of this book is the limited accounting of the Nine Years war.

The author goes into great detail on the Desmond wars. By contrast, the Nine Years War is almost an afterthought. The Nine Years War changed the face of Ireland for the next four hundred years, to leave out so much seemed a bit questionable. Apr 29, Jorja Grael rated it really liked it.