Hardiman's History of Galway

Chapter 4: From 1484 to the commencement of the Irish Rebellion in 1641

Disputes between Galway and Limerick

Chapter 4

From 1484 to the commencement of the Irish Rebellion in 1641

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Old map of Galway

The city of Limerick, from an early period of our history, was jealous of the growing trade and prosperity of Galway, although the latter long retained its superiority. This jealousy was shown on many occasions, but broke out violently in consequence of a mercantile dispute, which happened some time previously to 1524, between David Comyn, a citizen of Limerick, and some merchants of Galway. Comyn complained that he could have no justice administered to him in Galway; and, waiting for an opportunity, he seized the person of Ambrose Lynch Fitz-James, one of the inhabitants of the town, and kept him close prisoner, until he was ransomed for a large sum of money. In consequence of this outrage, hostilities commenced between the city and the town, and great depredations were committed both by sea and land; until the people of Limerick, weary of the contest, dispatched two of their citizens, Christopher Arthur and Nicholas Arthur, to Galway, to conclude a peace; or, as the record of this transaction expresses it, "to pacyficat and put awaye all manner adversitye, rancour, and inconvenyens that have rysen or insurged between the city and town habitantes of the same." Upon their arrival, the mayor, bailiffs and commonalty assembled in the town house, and with one assent elected Walter and Anthony Lynch Fitz-Thomas, to conclude "a perpetual peace and concorde" with the deputies of Limerick. The terms being agreed upon, a public meeting was convened on the 7th of May, 1524, and the subjoined curious articlesh were signed and ratified on both sides, and apparently to the mutual satisfaction of all parties: but as treaties are more frequently entered into, than inviolably preserved, so the people of Galway complained that those of Limerick still indulged in their resentment, though every matter in dispute was supposet to have been peaceably settled; and charged them with having again involved the town in fresh troubles, by insidously instigating Pierce, earl of Ormond, to make a demand for the prisage of wines, an impost which had never been theretofore paid or demanded in Galway.

Next: Prisage of wine claimed; Orders of Henry VIII

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