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Sir Walter Raleigh's Irish ambitions: new evidence

Posted By David Edwards, Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Among the Lismore Manuscripts in the National Library of Ireland there is a tranche of material regarding the Irish affairs of Sir Walter Raleigh. The material covers the years between 1586, when Raleigh became involved in the Munster Plantation, and 1602, when he sold his plantation seigniory to the future earl of Cork. This paper will outline the full range of Raleigh-related items in the collection, paying particular attention to those of political interest. Chief amongst these is a document headed Remembrances for Ireland. Written in June 1590 it reveals Raleigh as nurturing ambitious plans to develop a direct influence on the government of the country, something not previously realised. Although ultimately Raleigh would step back from a larger Irish role, other items in the collection show that his interest was sustained over several years, and that he maintained an identifiable Irish clientele that lasted until his downfall in 1603.

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Tags:  1590s  history  Ireland  politics  Raleigh 

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