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Normans in Ireland
Transcript of Normans in Ireland
Brian Boru defeated the Vikings at the battle of Clontarf in 1014.
Viking power in Ireland was severely reduced.
Brian and his sons died in the battle, leaving no one strong enough to become High King afterward.
This lack of a High King lasted for around 150 years.
Three Families Fight
Around 150 years after the battle of Clontarf three chiefs began to fight for the title of High King:
Turlough O'Connor (Connaught)
Muircertach Mac Lochlainn (Aileach)
Diarmaid Mac Murrough (Leinster)
O'Connor, Mac Lochlainn and Mac Murrough, before fighting with each other, wanted to knock out a common rival first and so marched to Tiernan O'Rourke's lands of Breifne.
O'Rourke was beaten, his land, cattle and wife were taken.
O'Rourke Strikes back
Fourteen years after his wife, cattle and lands were taken O'Rourke took his revenge, killing Mac Lochlainn in battle.
Turlough O'Connor's son, Ruairí, made peace with O'Rourke. With O'Rourke dealt with, Ruairí O'Connor marched on Dublin and and made himself High King.
Time to end old enemies
After O'Rourke became High King he decided the time was right to destroy his father's old rival, Diarmaid Mac Murrough.
He marched with his allies, who now included the Vikings of Dublin, to Connacht.
Diarmaid, his daughter, and a few trusted allies fled to Wales.
The Normans can help!
Mac Murrough went looking for help, from Ireland to Wales and then to France. Henry II, King of England, was in France when Mac Murrough got there.
Henry didn't agree to help but told Mac Murrough that he could look for help from the Norman families in Wales.
Eventually Mac Murrough found help, an Earl called Richard Fitzgilbert de Clare (known as 'Strongbow') agreed to help him take over Ireland.
Strongbow had had an argument with Henry II, which had resulted in his lands being confiscated. This made Mac Murrough's offer very appealing.
Land you say?!
To seal the deal Diarmaid's daughter, Aoife, married Richard. As well as this Diarmaid promised Richard that he would be made the heir to the Kingdom of Leinster.
In 1169 the first Normans landed at Bannow Bay in Wexford under Robert Fitzstephen.
1) What was the most powerful force in Ireland before the battle of Clontarf? (1)
2) Who were the three chieftains who wanted to be High King in the 1150s? (3)
3a) Who did the three chieftains fight (and defeat) before they turned on each other? (1)
3b) What did they take from this man? (3)
4) Who became High King in 1166? (1)
5) Why did Diarmaid flee to Wales? (3)
6) What did Diarmaid promise 'Strongbow'? (2)