Sir Thomas Esmonde, 11th Baronet

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Thomas Esmonde
Sir Thomas Esmonde
Esmonde in 1907
In office
11 December 1922 – 12 December 1934
Member of Parliament for
North Wexford
In office
October 1900 – December 1918
Preceded byThomas Joseph Healy
Succeeded byRoger Sweetman
Member of Parliament for
West Kerry
In office
July 1892 – October 1900
Preceded byEdward Harrington
Succeeded byThomas O'Donnell
Member of Parliament for
South Dublin
In office
December 1885 – July 1892
Preceded byNew Creation
Succeeded byHorace Plunkett
Personal details
Born(1862-09-21)21 September 1862
County Wexford, Ireland
Died15 September 1935(1935-09-15) (aged 72)
County Wexford, Ireland
Political party
  • Alice Donovan
    (m. 1891; died 1922)
  • (m. 1924)
Residence(s)Ballynastragh House, Gorey, County Wexford
Ballynastragh House, County Wexford, home of the Esmonde family – from a drawing published 1826.[1]

Sir Thomas Henry Grattan Esmonde, 11th Baronet, KHS (21 September 1862 – 15 September 1935) was an Irish Home Rule nationalist politician and author.[2]


Esmonde was elected Irish Parliamentary Party MP for the constituencies South Dublin from 1885 to 1892; West Kerry from 1892 to 1900; and North Wexford from 1900 to 1918. He also sat as an independent Senator in the Oireachtas from 1922 to 1934.[3][4] He was High Sheriff of County Waterford in 1887.[2]

Personal life[edit]

He was the son of Sir John Esmonde, 10th Baronet and his wife Louisa, daughter of Henry Grattan.[5]

In July 1891, he married Alice Donovan of Tralee.[6] Alice and Esmonde had five children:

Alice died in December 1922, and in September 1924 Esmonde married Anna Frances Levins.[6]

Esmonde's home, Ballynastragh House, located near Gorey, County Wexford, and dating from the 17th century, was burned down on 9 March 1923 by members of the anti-Treaty Irish Republican Army. The house was rebuilt on a much smaller scale in 1937.[7]

Esmonde was a frequent traveller and author of articles on Irish folklore and antiquities, as well as a memoir, Hunting Memories of Many Lands (1920).[2] He died in Dublin, six days before his 73rd birthday.[2]

Sir Thomas Esmonde, 11th Baronet
CrestOut of a mural crown Gules a head in profile wearing a helmet all Proper.
ShieldErmine on a chief Gules three mullets Argent.
MottoMalo Mori Quam Foedari (Had Rather Die Than Be Dishonoured)[8]

In 1902 he founded the Enniscorthy Echo in co-operation with William Sears.[9]


Knight of the Order of the Holy Sepulchre.[10]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ by George Petrie from Brewer, Vol. 2: where it is stated that it was published by Sherwood 1 May 1826 and engraved by James Sargant Storer and Henry Sargant Storer
  2. ^ a b c d "Sir T. H. Gratton Esmonde: Nationalist Whip and Sinn Fein Senator". The Times. 16 September 1935. p. 14.
  3. ^ "President's nominees for Seanad". Houses of the Oireachtas. 6 December 1922. Retrieved 26 December 2023.
  4. ^ "Thomas Esmonde". Oireachtas Members Database. Retrieved 27 December 2018.
  5. ^ Robert Henry Mair, ed. (1886). Debrett's House of Commons and The Judicial Bench 1886. London: Dean and Son. p. 48. Retrieved 24 May 2014.
  6. ^ a b Maume, Patrick. "Esmonde, Sir Thomas Henry Grattan". Dictionary of Irish Biography. Retrieved 4 January 2022.
  7. ^ "The destruction of Ballynastragh House, Gorey, March 1923". The Archaeology of Conflict: Wexford in the Civil War, 1922–1923. 17 February 2018. Retrieved 26 December 2018.
  8. ^ Debrett's Peerage. 1878.
  9. ^ "Sears, William". Dictionary of Irish Biography. October 2009. Retrieved 10 December 2021.
  10. ^ Notable Irish Members (Historic): Sir Thomas Grattan Esmonde

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
New creation Member of Parliament for South Dublin
Succeeded by
Preceded by Member of Parliament for West Kerry
Succeeded by
Preceded by Member of Parliament for North Wexford
Succeeded by
Baronetage of Ireland
Preceded by Baronet
(of Clonegall)
Succeeded by