Lord Justices (Ireland)
The Lord Justice of Ireland was an ancient senior position in the governance of Ireland, held by a number of important personages, such as the Earl of Kildare.
In the later centuries of British rule the Lords Justices were three office-holders in the Kingdom of Ireland who in the absence of the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland fulfilled the social and political duties of the Viceroy as head of the Irish executive.
The office-holders were usually:
- Church of Ireland primate, the Archbishop of Armagh
- Lord Chancellor of Ireland
- Speaker of the Irish House of Commons
Among their duties was to welcome the incoming Lord Lieutenant when he arrived in state in the port of Dublin, having travelled from Great Britain to take up his post.
The decision in 1765 of the government of Great Britain to require the viceroy to be a full-time resident in Ireland, rather than just pay visits during sessions of parliament, removed the need for the Lords Justices, while the abolition of the Parliament of Ireland in 1800 meant that there was no longer a speaker of the House of Commons to serve as a Lord Justice.
Easter Rising, 1916
After the Easter Rising of 1916, the British Government withdrew the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Lord Wimborne, and the Chief Secretary for Ireland, Augustine Birrell, back to Britain. Both men had been responsible for the civil government of Ireland and under these unusual circumstances the British Government appointed Lord Justices on 11 July to carry out their functions; however, as martial law was then in place, General Sir John Maxwell was actually the individual largely responsible for governing Ireland. The Lord Justices were Lord Castletown, Sir David Harrel, Richard Cherry (the Lord Chief Justice of Ireland), James Owen Wylie and Jonathan Pim (both Judges of the Supreme Court of Judicature of Ireland). The Lord Justices were not in place for long as a new Chief Secretary, Henry Duke, was appointed on 31 July and Lord Wimborne was re-appointed as Lord Lieutenant in the following days.
- Hugh de Lacy, Lord of Meath (in office in 1172)
- Hamo de Valois (in office in 1197)
- Gerald FitzWilliam FitzGerald, Lord Offaly (d. 1205)
- Sir Edmond Butler (in office 1215).
- Maurice FitzGerald FitzGerald, Lord Offaly (1229 – c.1248 )
- Stephen de Longuespee (d. 1260 in office)
- David O'Barry, 1st Viscount of Buttevant (d. 1278) 'Appointed 1267'
- Sir James Audley (d. 23 June 1272 in office)
- Maurice FitzMaurice Fitzgerald (d. 1286) (July 1272 – )
- William de Vescy (12 September 1290 – 1294)
- Thomas FitzMaurice FitzGerald, Lord Offaly (d. 1296) (April to October 1295)
- John Logan (18 October 1295 – )
- Sir Maurice Rochfort 1302
- Roger de Mortimer, 1st Earl of March (1285–1330) Justiciar of Ireland
- Thomas FitzGerald, 2nd Earl of Kildare (d. 1328) (1320–1328)
- Sir John Darcy (1329 – still in office in 1335)
- Maurice FitzGerald, 1st Earl of Desmond (d. January 1356) (July 1355 – Jan 1356)
- James Butler, 2nd Earl of Ormonde (4 October 1331 – 18 October 1382) (In office 1359, 1364, and 1376.)
- Maurice FitzGerald, 4th Earl of Kildare (1318–1390); (in office 1360)
- Gerald Fitzgerald, 4th Earl of Desmond (k. 1397) (1367–)
- Thomas FitzGerald, 7th Earl of Kildare (1454, 1461–1470)
- William Preston, 2nd Viscount Gormanston(in office 1525)
- William Brabazon, (In Office 1 October 1543, 2ndly 1 April 1546, 3rd Time 2 Feb. 1549 d 9 July 1552 )
- Sir Francis Bryan, Knight-Marshal, (d. 2 February 1549 in office)
- Sir Thomas Cusack, Lord Chancellor of Ireland (in office 1552)
- Gerald Aylmer (in office 1552)
- Hugh Curwen, Archbishop of Dublin, (in office 1557)
- Sir William Drury (in office 1578–1579)
- Sir Robert Gardiner (in office 1578–1579)
- Sir Henry Wallop (1582–1584)
- Adam Loftus, Archbishop of Dublin (1582–1584)
- Thomas Jones, Archbishop of Dublin (in office 1613, 1615)
- Richard Boyle, 1st Earl of Cork (in office 1629)
- Sir William Parsons, 1st Baronet (in office 1640–1643)
- Robert Dillon, 2nd Earl of Roscommon (in office 1640)
- Sir John Borlase (in office 1641–4)
- Sir Henry Tichborne (in office 1643–4)
- Sir Maurice Eustace (Lord Chancellor) (in office 1660–1662)
- Charles Coote, 1st Earl of Mountrath (in office 1660–1662)
- Roger Boyle, 1st Earl of Orrery (in office 1660–1662)
- Arthur Forbes, 1st Earl of Granard (1623–1695) (in office 1671, 1673 and 1685)
- Michael Boyle, Archbishop of Armagh (in office 1671, 1673 and 1685)
- Sir Richard Nagle (1636–1699) (in office 1689)
- Thomas Coningsby, 1st Earl Coningsby, in office 1690–1692
- Henri de Massue, Earl of Galway (1648–1720), in office 1697–1701
- Constantine Phipps (in office 1710)
- Richard Ingoldsby (in office 1709–1710)
- Robert FitzGerald, 19th Earl of Kildare (1714)
- Colonel Sir Charles Feilding (1714)
- Field Marshal Richard Molesworth, 3rd Viscount Molesworth (1736)
11 July 1916 – 11 August 1916
- Bernard FitzPatrick, 2nd Baron Castletown
- Sir David Harrel
- Richard Cherry, Lord Chief Justice of Ireland
- James Owen Wylie
- Jonathan Pim
- Lord Deputy of Ireland
- Lord Lieutenant of Ireland
- Lord Chancellor of Ireland
- Lord Chief Justice of Ireland
Notes and references
- Editorial in The Irish Times, 1 August 1916, p. 4
- The Irish Times, 7 August 1916, p. 4
- Bagwell 1909, p. 312: "As soon as Wandesford's death was known Robert [Dec 1640] Lord Dillon and Sir William Parsons were appointed Lords Justices."
- Bagwell, Richard (1909), Ireland under the Stuarts and under the Interregnum, 1, London: Longmans, Green, and Co. - 1603–1642
- Lodge, John, Archdall, Mervyn, A.M., The Peerage of Ireland, Dublin, 1789.
- Smyth, Constantine J. (1839). . London: Henry Butterworth.