Art Mór Mac Murchadha Caomhánach

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Art Mór
Mac Murchadha, King of Laighin
Art Mór Mac Murchadha Caomhánach.jpg
Art Mór riding (see below)
Reign 1375–1416
Predecessor Donnchadh mac Muircheartaigh
Successor Donnchadh mac Airt Mhóir
Spouse Elizabeth Calf
Issue Donnchadh, Gerald (Gearalt)
Full name
Art Mór mac Airt, Mac Murchadha Caomhánach
Irish Art mac Airt Mac Murchadha Caomhánach
English Art MacMurrough-Kavanagh
House Mac Murchadha-Caomhánach
Father Art mac Muircheartaigh
Born 1357
unknown
Died 31 December 1416
Ferns, County Wexford
Burial St Mullin's, County Carlow

Art Mór Mac Murchadha Caomhánach (anglicized Art MacMurrough-Kavanagh; died 1416/17) is generally regarded as the most formidable of the later Kings of Leinster. He revived not only the royal family's prerogatives but their lands and power. During the length of his forty-two year reign he fully lived up to his title, dominating the Anglo-Norman settlers of Leinster.

Life[edit]

Art Mór riding to meet the earl of Gloucester, as depicted in an illustration to Jean Creton's Histoire du roy d'Angleterre Richard II

His dominance of the province and its inhabitants - both Gaelic and Hiberno-Norman - was deemed sufficiently detrimental to the colony that Richard II spent much of the years 1394-1395 sparring with him. While Art did indeed submit to Richard, he renounced this fealty on Richard's departure and made much of his kingdom a death-trap for any invading English or Anglo-Irish forces. The Crown accordingly dealt with him cautiously and he was granted an amnesty in 1409.

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Family[edit]

He married Elizabeth Calf, also known as Elizabeth le Veel, heiress of the Anglo-Norman barony of Norragh. Such a racial intermarriage violated the Statutes of Kilkenny and the Crown on this pretext forfeited Elizabeth's lands, one of the causes of her husband's enmity to the English. They had three sons -Donnchadh, King of Leinster, Diarmait and Gerald, Lord of Ferns- but Elizabeth's estates ultimately came to the descendants of her daughter by her first husband, Sir John Staunton of Clane.

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