Bishop of Limerick

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St Mary's Cathedral, Limerick, the episcopal seat of the pre-Reformation and Church of Ireland bishops.
St John's Cathedral, Limerick, the episcopal seat of the Roman Catholic bishops.

The Bishop of Limerick is an episcopal title which takes its name after the city of Limerick in the Province of Munster, Ireland. In the Roman Catholic Church it still continues as a separate title, but in the Church of Ireland it has been united with other bishoprics.

History[edit]

The diocese of Limerick is one of the twenty-four dioceses established at the Synod of Rathbreasail in 1111. After the Reformation, there are parallel apostolic successions: one of the Church of Ireland and the other of the Roman Catholic Church.

In the Church of Ireland, Limerick continued as a separate title when it was combined with Ardfert and Aghadoe to form the united bishopric of Limerick, Ardfert and Aghadoe in 1661. Since 1976, the Church of Ireland see has been part of the united bishopric of Limerick and Killaloe.

In the Roman Catholic Church, Limerick still remains as a separate title. The current bishop is the Most Reverend Brendan Leahy, Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Limerick, who was appointed by the Holy See on 10 January 2013 and received episcopal ordination on 14 April 2013.[1]

Pre-Reformation bishops[edit]

List of Pre-Reformation Bishops of Limerick
From Until Incumbent Notes
c.1106 1140 Gilli alias Gilla Espaic Consecrated circa 1106; presided as papal legate at the Synod of Rathbreasail in 1111; resigned 1140; died 1145; also known as Gilbert
1140 1148 Patricius Consecrated at Canterbury in 1140 and took an oath of fealty there, however, his name does not occur in any Irish record; died after December 1148
c.1140 1151 Erolb Probably a successful rivil of Patricius; governed the see from circa 1140 until his death in 1151; possibly also known as Harold
bef.1152 1167 Torgesius Present at the Synod of Kells in March 1152; died in office
bef.1167 c.1186/89 Brictius Became bishop before 1167; assisted at the Third Council of the Lateran in 1179 and 1180; died sometime between 1186 and 1189
bef.1190 1207 Donnchad Ua Briain Became bishop before 1190; died before 5 December 1207; also known as Donatus
1207 (Geoffrey) Rector of Dungarvan; nominated by King John on 5 December 1207, but no evidence he was validly elected or consecrated
1208/15 1222 Edmund Became bishop before July 1215, and probably governed the see from circa 1208; died in office
1223 1250 Hubert de Burgo, O.S.A. Formerly Prior of Athassel; became custodian of the diocese 11 March 1223 and elected bishop before 7 May 1224; received possession of the temporalities circa 21 April 1225; died 14 September 1250
1251 1272 Robert of Emly Elected before 11 April 1251 and received possession of the temporalities 6 January 1252; died 8 September 1272
1273 1302 Gerald le Mareshall Formerly Archdeacon of Limerick; elected bishop before 11 January 1273 and received possession of the temporalities 17 January 1273; died 10 February 1302
1302 1311 Robert de Dundonald Formerly a Canon of Limerick; elected bishop before 2 May 1302 and received possession of the temporalities 30 July 1302; died 3 May 1311
1312 1336 Eustace de l'Eau Formerly Dean of Limerick; elected bishop circa 20 November 1312 and received possession of the temporalities after 1 December 1312; died 3 May 1336; also known as Eustace de Aqua
1336 1353 Maurice de Rochfort Elected before 7 November 1336 and received possession of the temporalities on that date; consecrated 6 April 1337; died 9 June 1353; also known as Maurice de Rupe
1354 1359 Stephen Lawless Formerly Chancellor of Limerick; appointed bishop 19 February 1354; consecrated before 7 April 1354; received possession of the temporalities 29 April 1354; died 28 December 1359
1360 1369 Stephen Wall Formerly Dean of Limerick; elected bishop before 6 November 1360 and appointed on that date; received possession of the temporalities 2 March 1361; translated to Meath 19 February 1369; also known as Stephen de Valle
1369 c.1399 Peter Curragh Appointed 19 February 1369; received possession of the temporalities 10 February 1370; translated to Ross circa 1399
c.1399 (Bernardus Ó Conchobhair) Translated from Ross circa 1399, but did not take effect
1400 1434 Conchobhar Ó Deadhaidh, O.F.M. Formerly Archdeacon of Killaloe; appointed bishop 26 May 1400; resigned before October 1425; died 27 July 1434; also known as Cornelius O'Dea
1426 1458 John Mothel, O.S.A. Formerly a Canon of Kells; appointed bishop 7 October 1426; received possession of the temporalities 23 January 1427; resigned circa April 1458; died 1468
1456 Thomas Leger, O.S.A. Appointed 10 May 1456 whilst John Mothel was still bishop; deprived 23 November 1456
1458 1469 William Creagh Appointed 19 April 1458; died before July 1469; also known as William Russell
1469 1486 Thomas Arthur Appointed 14 July and consecrated 10 September 1469; died 19 July 1486
1486 Richard Stakpoll Appointed 18 September 1486, but was made void by the appointment of Dunowe; died before 20 November 1486
1486 1489 John Dunowe Formerly a Canon of Exeter; appointed bishop 13 November 1486; acted as a suffragan bishop in the diocese of Exeter 1489; died before April 1489
1489 1522 John Folan Formerly a Canon of Ferns; appointed bishop 24 April 1489; died 30 January 1522; also known as John O'Phelan
1524 1551 John Quin, O.P. [A] Appointed 21 October 1524 and consecrated before 3 January 1525; resigned 9 April 1551; died 1554 (or 1555); also known as John Coyn or Seaán Ó Cuinn
Source(s):[2][3][4]

Post-Reformation bishops[edit]

Church of Ireland succession[edit]

List of Church of Ireland Bishops of Limerick
From Until Incumbent Notes
1551 1556 William Casey Formerly Rector of Kilcornan; nominated bishop by King Edward VI on 6 July 1551 and consecrated at Dublin on 25 October 1551; deprived by Queen Mary I in 1556
1556 1571 Hugh Lacy [B] Formerly a Canon of Limerick; appointed bishop 24 November 1556; in a letter of 12 October 1561, the papal legate Fr David Wolfe SJ described all the bishops in Munster as 'adherents of the Queen';[5] in 1562 the Lord Lieutenant the Earl of Sussex said that he had 'by the laws of the realm, forfeited his bishopric';[6] appointed to an ecclesiastical commission for enforcing the royal supremacy in June 1564;[7] deprived 8 May 1571; died 1580; also known as Hugh de Lacey or Lees
1571 1591 William Casey (again) Restored by Queen Elizabeth I on 8 May 1571; died on 7 February 1591
apptd. 1588 (Denis Campbell) Dean of Limerick; appointed coadjutor bishop in 1588 to Bishop Casey; Campbell was later nominated to be bishop of Derry, Raphoe and Clogher in 1603, but died before consecration in July 1603
1594 1603 John Thornborough Formerly Dean of York; nominated 20 September 1593 and appointed by letters patent 9 January 1594; translated to Bristol 4 July 1603; also known as John Thornburgh
1604 1626 Bernard Adams Nominated 5 August 1603 and consecrated April 1604; also held Kilfenora in commendam from 1606 to 1617; died 22 March 1626
1626 1634 Francis Gough Formerly Chancellor of Limerick; nominated 18 April and consecrated 17 September 1626; died 29 August 1634
1634 1642 George Webb Formerly Chaplain-in-Ordinary to King Charles II; nominated bishop 6 October and consecrated 18 December 1634; died as a prisoner at the castle in Limerick on 22 June 1642
1643 1649 Robert Sibthorp Translated from Kilfenora; nominated 7 April 1643; died in April 1649
1649 1660 See vacant
1660 1661 Edward Synge Formerly Dean of Elphin; nominated bishop 6 August 1660; became Bishop of Limerick, Ardfert and Aghadoe in 1661
1661 1976 See part of the united bishopric of Limerick, Ardfert and Aghadoe.
Since 1976 See part of the united bishopric of Limerick and Killaloe.
Source(s):[4][8][9]

Roman Catholic succession[edit]

List of Roman Catholic Bishops of Limerick
From Until Incumbent Notes
1551 1556 See vacant
1556 1580 Hugh Lacy [C] Formerly a Canon of Limerick; appointed 24 November 1556; received special faculties for the province of Cashel in the absence of the archbishop on 3 May 1575; died 1580
1582 1591 Cornelius O'Boyle Appointed 20 August 1582; died after 1591
1591 1602 See vacant
apptd. 1602 Richard Cadan Appointed vicar apostolic by papal brief 22 February 1602
1620 1646 Richard Arthur Named as vicar general of Limerick in a government report in 1613, and as bishop-elect in a later report 1617; appointed 18 May 1620 and consecrated September 1623; died 23 May 1646
1646 1654 Edmund O'Dwyer Appointed coadjutor bishop (with right of succession) 6 February and consecrated 7 May 1645; succeeded 23 May 1646; died 5 April 1654
1657 1685 James Dowley Appointed vicar apostolic by papal brief 17 April 1657 and again 31 July 1669; appointed bishop 4 May 1676 and by papal brief 8 March 1677; died circa January 1685
1698 1702 John O'Mollony Translated from Killaloe 24 January 1689, but continued as Apostolic Administrator of Killaloe 1689–1702; died 3 September 1702
1702 1720 See vacant
1720 1737 Cornelius Ó Caoimh Appointed 7 March 1720; died 4 May 1737
1737 1759 Robert Lacy Appointed 30 August 1737 and consecrated 23 February 1638; died 4 August 1759
1759 1778 Daniel O'Kearney Appointed 27 November 1759 and consecrated 27 January 1760; died 24 January 1778
(1778) (John Butler, S.J.) Appointed 10 April 1778, but was not accepted
1779 1796 Denis Conway Appointed 25 February and consecrated 20 June 1779; died 19 June 1796
1796 1813 John Young Appointed coadjutor bishop (with right of succession) 4 January and consecrated 20 May 1793; succeeded 19 June 1796; died 22 September 1813
1814 1828 Charles Tuohy Appointed 1 October 1814 and consecrated 23 April 1815; died 17 March 1828
1828 1864 John Ryan Appointed coadjutor bishop (with right of succession) 31 September and consecrated 11 December 1825; succeeded 17 March 1828; died 6 June 1864
1864 1886 George Butler Appointed 10 June and consecrated 25 July 1861; succeeded 6 June 1864; died 3 February 1886
1886 1917 Edward Thomas O'Dwyer Appointed 18 May and consecrated 29 June 1886; died 19 August 1917
1918 1923 Denis Hallinan Appointed 10 January and consecrated 10 March 1918; died 2 July 1923
1923 1945 David Keane Appointed 24 December 1923 and consecrated 2 March 1924; died 12 March 1945
1945 1958 Patrick O'Neill Appointed 15 December 1945 and consecrated 24 February 1946; died 26 March 1958
1958 1973 Henry Murphy Appointed 1 July and consecrated 31 August 1958; died 8 October 1973
1974 1995 Jeremiah Newman Appointed 17 May and consecrated 14 July 1974; died 3 April 1995
1994 1996 (John Magee, Bishop of Cloyne) Acted as Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Limerick from July 1994 to March 1996.[10]
1996 2009 Donal Brendan Murray Previously Auxiliary Bishop of Dublin and Titular Bishop of Glenndálocha 1982–1996; appointed bishop of Limerick on 10 February 1996 and installed at St John's Cathedral, Limerick on 24 March 1996; resignation accepted on 17 December 2009
2009 2013 See vacant
2013 present Brendan Leahy Appointed on 10 January 2013 and received episcopal ordination on 14 April 2013.
Source(s):[11][12]

Notes[edit]

  • A Some sources state that John Quin resigned by consequences of his infirmities.[13][14] However, another source states he was forced to resign by King Edward VI in 1551, but was restored by Queen Mary I in 1553.[15]
  • B C Hugh Lacy became bishop of both successions when they were briefly reunited in the reign of Queen Mary I. After the accession of Queen Elizabeth I, he was deprived of the Church of Ireland title in 1571, but continued with the Roman Catholic title until his death in 1580.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bishop Brendan Leahy at Catholic-Hierarchy Retrieved on 17 June 2013.
  2. ^ Cotton 1851, The Province of Munster, pp. 376–381.
  3. ^ Fryde et al. 1986, Handbook of British Chronology, pp. 365–366.
  4. ^ a b "Historical successions: Limerick". Crockford's Clerical Directory. Retrieved 17 June 2013. 
  5. ^ Rigg, J.M. (1916–26). Calendar of state papers relating to English affairs : preserved principally at Rome in the Vatican archives and library. London - H M Stationery Office. p. 49, No. 108. 
  6. ^ Cal. Carew MSS, 1515-74, no. 237, quoted in Henry A Jeffries, 'The Irish Parliament of 1560', Irish Historical Studies 26 (1989) P. 137.
  7. ^ Fiants Ire Eliz, No 666
  8. ^ Cotton 1851, The Province of Munster, pp. 381–385.
  9. ^ Fryde et al. 1986, Handbook of British Chronology, pp. 400–401.
  10. ^ "Most Rev. John Magee". Roman Catholic Diocese of Cloyne. Retrieved 27 June 2009. 
  11. ^ Fryde et al. 1986, Handbook of British Chronology, pp. 337–438.
  12. ^ Diocese of Limerick at Catholic-Hierarchy Retrieved on 19 September 2009.
  13. ^ Cotton 1851, The Province of Munster, p. 381.
  14. ^ Courthorpe, William, ed. (1836). Debrett's Complete Peerage of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland (Twenty-first ed.). London: Printed for J.G. & F. Rivington; etc. p. 489. 
  15. ^ Fryde et al. 1986, Handbook of British Chronology, p. 437.

Bibliography[edit]

  • Cotton, Henry (1851). The Province of Munster. Fasti Ecclesiae Hiberniae: The Succession of the Prelates and Members of the Cathedral Bodies of Ireland. Volume 1 (2nd ed.). Dublin: Hodges and Smith. 
  • Fryde, E. B.; Greenway, D. E.; Porter, S.; Roy, I., eds. (1986). Handbook of British Chronology (3rd, reprinted 2003 ed.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-56350-X. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Begley, John, The Diocese of Limerick, Ancient and Medieval. Dublin: Browne & Nolan, 1906.
  • Gillebert of Limerick:the Prelate's Present to the Primate of England, John Lucey, North Munster Antiquarian Journal 6, 2006, pp. 5–14

External links[edit]