The Kings of Ossory

Mac Giolla Phádraig (Gilla Patraic I)

As mentioned in the previous post, Gilla Patraic I (also sometimes called Mac Giolla Phádraig) was the eponymous ancestor from which the Fitzpatrick name will be derived.  He was King of Ossory (shown in bright green on the adjacent map). He was the oldest son of Donncadh macCellaig who was powerful King of Ossory that defeated the Leinstermen and slew the King of Leinster in 945 AD.  Gilla Patraic I was born around 940 AD and died in 996 AD.  He maIreland with the Kingdom of Ossory in shown in bright green.rried Aelmuire, who was the daughter of Amlaibh, the son of Sitric, King of the Danes.  From this marriage at least six sons were produced.  At one time, he was captured by the powerful Brian Boru (King of Ireland who was the ancestor of the powerful Gaelic O’Brien family) who was plundering Ossory.  He was eventually released and was killed by Donovan who was the son of Ivar, the King of Waterford, in 996 AD.  His brother Muiredach I (Muircheartach) was lord of one-half of Ossory and he was slain by one of the O’Kealy sept in 1041 AD.  At this point the O’Kealys rival the power of our family and they have independent rule over part of Ossory and are the rulers of several less powerful families.

Duncadh Mac Giolla Phádraig (Mac Giolla Patraic II)

Duncadh Mac Giolla Phádraig, the son of Gilla Patraic I, was born in 990 AD and died in 1039 AD.  He is the only member of our clan to become King of Leinster, which represents approximately one-fourth of Ireland.  He married Ni Braenan, the daughter of the Chief of Ui Duach.  From this marriage they had at least three sons including Giolla Phádraig, Diarman (the Prince of Leinster) and Dombnal.

Mac Giolla Phádraig (Gilla Patraic II)

Mac Giolla Phádraig, the son of Duncadh Mac Giolla Phádraig, was born around 1020 AD and died in 1055 AD and was King of Ossory.  He is known for killing Doncadh mac Aedh, King of Hy Bairrche in 1042 AD.  He .  supposedly died of grief.  He is known to have had two sons, Domhnall Mac Giolla Phádraig and Gilla Patraic Ruadh III in addition to a daughter, Dubhcobhlaight, the “Lady of Ossory.”

Domhnal Mac Giolla Phádraig (Mac Gilla Patraic II)

Domhnal Mac Giolla Phádraig, the son of Mac Giolla Phádraig and King of Ossory, died in 1087 AD, the date of his birth is not recorded.  He was described as being a warlike chief.  He had two son, Gilla Patraic Mac Giolla Phádraig and Doncadh mac Gilla Patraic IV.  He died after a long illness.

Gilla Patraic Mac Giolla Phádraig (mac Gilla Patraic II)

Gilla Patraic Mac Giolla Phádraig, the son of Domhnal, was King of Ossory although later references refer to him as Lord of Ossory (see map of Ossory in the 12th century). The date of his birth is not recorded but he died in 1146 AD.  He married Orla, the daughter of Murcadh mac Flan O’Melachlin and the produced two sons, Scanlan and Domhnall (slain by the O’Moores in 1165 AD).  He was slain by in Kilkenny by the sons of Congalach Ua Braenan, Chief of the Ui Duaich.

Scanlan Mac Giolla Phádraig (Mac Gilla Patraic)

Jerpoint Abby is a ruined Cistercian abbey that was founded in the second half of the 12th Century in County Kilhenny.  It is famous for its stone carvings and it is a well-known tourist attraction.

Jerpoint Abby is a ruined Cistercian abbey that was founded in the second half of the 12th Century in County Kilhenny. It is famous for its stone carvings and it is a well-known tourist attraction. The abbey flourished until the Dissolution of the Monastaries that was decreed by Henry VIII.

Scanlan Mac Giolla Phádraig, the son of Gilla Patraic Mac Giolla Phádraig , was born a around 1115 AD and died around 1185 AD.  During his reign, Ossory was invaded by Muircheertach O’Lochlain in 1156 AD and the power of the clan Mac Giolla Phádraig was greatly diminished.  His primary claim to fame is that Jerpoint  Abbey was built by the clan Mac Gilla Patraic.

Domhnall Mac Giolla Phádraig (Mac Gilla Patraic)

Domhnall was the son of Scanlan and he was known to be born 1170 AD in Magh Lacca, on the plain of Leix.  He died around 1240 AD.  By this point the clan has lost much of its land.  In 1192 AD, there was even a decree of eviction by the Norman over-lord and there was a flight of the Mac Giolla Phádraig clan to the north in the area that will be known as Upper Ossory.

Seaffraidh Mac Giolla Phádraig (Mac Gilla Patraic)

Seaffraidh Mac Giolla Phádraig’s date of birth is unknown but he died in 1269 AD.  It is uncertain if he still used the title King of Ossory but it isknown that he used the title King of Sliabh Bladham, which is in an area called the Slieve Bloom Mountains between County Offaly and County Laois.  He is known to have had three sons, Seaffraidh Bacagh, Oistegan and William.

Seaffraidh Bacagh Mac Giolla Phádraig, the Lame

Seaffraidh Bacagh’s date of birth is not recorded but he died in 1289 AD.  He married Inghen, daughter of O’Meachair, King of Ui Cairn Ikern in Tipperary.  This marriage produced four sons, Seaffraidh Fin, Donadh, Cellach and Diarmanid Caoic.  His title is not recorded in history, but after him all heads of the Mac Giolla Phádraig clan will be referred to as Lord of Upper Ossory, with their power being markedly diminished.

The history of the Lords of Upper Ossory will be the subject of the next post.

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