Thomas St Lawrence, 13th Baron Howth

Last updated

Thomas St Lawrence, 13th Baron Howth (1659–1727) was an Irish nobleman of the later Stuart and early Georgian era.

House of Stuart European royal house

The House of Stuart, originally Stewart, was a European royal house of Scotland with Breton origin. They had held the office of High Steward of Scotland since Walter fitz Alan. The royal Stewart line was founded by Robert II whose descendants were kings and queens of Scotland from 1371 until the union with England in 1707. Mary, Queen of Scots was brought up in France where she adopted the French spelling of the name Stuart.

Georgian era period of British history encompassing the years 1714–1830 (or –1837)

The Georgian era is a period in British history from 1714 to c. 1830–37, named after the Hanoverian kings George I, George II, George III and George IV. The sub-period that is the Regency era is defined by the regency of George IV as Prince of Wales during the illness of his father George III. The definition of the Georgian era is often extended to include the relatively short reign of William IV, which ended with his death in 1837.


He was born in 1659, eldest son of William St Lawrence, 12th Baron Howth, and Elizabeth Fitzwilliam. He was only twelve when his father died, and during his minority he was under the guardianship of Thomas Butler, 6th Earl of Ossory, who had been his father's closest friend. [1]

William St Lawrence, 12th Baron Howth (1628–1671) was an Irish nobleman of the Restoration period. He was an intelligent and popular man who would undoubtedly have played an influential role in Irish politics had it not been for his premature death.

Thomas Butler, 6th Earl of Ossory Irish politician

Vice-Admiral Thomas Butler, 6th Earl of Ossory, KG, PC, PC(I) was an Irish politician. He was born at Kilkenny Castle, the eldest son of James Butler, 1st Duke of Ormond, and Lady Elizabeth Preston.


After the Revolution of 1688, Lord Howth seems to have been determined at all costs to back the winning side. At first he supported James II and sat in the Patriot Parliament of 1689; but after the failure of the Jacobite cause he quickly transferred his loyalty to William III, sitting in the Irish Parliament of 1692, and signing the Declaration of Loyalty to the person and government of the King in 1697. A family tradition that he entertained William in Howth Castle is probably unfounded. [2]

Glorious Revolution 17th Century British revolution

The Glorious Revolution, or Revolution of 1688, Irish: An Réabhlóid Ghlórmhar, Scottish Gaelic: Rèabhlaid Ghlòrmhor or Welsh: Chwyldro Gogoneddus, refers to the November 1688 deposition and subsequent replacement of James II and VII as ruler of England, Scotland and Ireland by his daughter Mary II and her Dutch husband William III of Orange. The outcome of events in all three kingdoms and Europe, the Revolution was quick and relatively bloodless, though establishing the new regime took much longer and led to significant casualties. The term was first used by John Hampden in late 1689.

James II of England 17th-century King of England and Ireland, and of Scotland (as James VII)

James II and VII was King of England and Ireland as James II and King of Scotland as James VII, from 6 February 1685 until he was deposed in the Glorious Revolution of 1688. The last Roman Catholic monarch of England, Scotland and Ireland, his reign is now remembered primarily for struggles over religious tolerance. However, it also involved the principles of absolutism and divine right of kings and his deposition ended a century of political and civil strife by confirming the primacy of Parliament over the Crown.

The Patriot Parliament is the name given to the session of the Irish Parliament called by King James II of Ireland during the War of the Two Kings in 1689. The parliament met in one session, from 7 May 1689 to 20 July 1689, and was the only session of the Irish Parliament under King James II.

Despite his political opportunism, he seems to have been highly esteemed by those who knew him. His closest friends, the Grattan family, were also close friends of Jonathan Swift (who later became friendly with Howth's eldest son and his wife). He built a quay to carry coal to Howth lighthouse, at considerable cost to himself. He was also noted for charity, and left a large sum in his will for the relief of the poor of the parish of Howth. Elrington Ball [3] quotes an elegy on his death in 1727 which pays tribute to his virtues:

Jonathan Swift 17th/18th-century Anglo-Irish satirist, essayist, and poet

Jonathan Swift was an Anglo-Irish satirist, essayist, political pamphleteer, poet and cleric who became Dean of St Patrick's Cathedral, Dublin.

Coal A combustible sedimentary rock composed primarily of carbon

Coal is a combustible black or brownish-black sedimentary rock, formed as rock strata called coal seams. Coal is mostly carbon with variable amounts of other elements; chiefly hydrogen, sulfur, oxygen, and nitrogen. Coal is formed if dead plant matter decays into peat and over millions of years the heat and pressure of deep burial converts the peat into coal. Vast deposits of coal originates in former wetlands—called coal forests—that covered much of the Earth's tropical land areas during the late Carboniferous (Pennsylvanian) and Permian times.

"Behold this stone whose vault contains

More precious dust than India's veins,

For honour's sake then shed a tear,

Since honour's self lies buried here."


He married Mary Barnewall, daughter of Henry, 2nd Viscount Barnewall of Kingsland and his second wife Lady Mary Nugent. [4] They had nine children, of whom six reached adult life:

Viscount Barnewall, of Kingsland in the Parish of Donabate in the County of Dublin, was a title in the Peerage of Ireland. It was created on 29 June 1646 for Nicholas Barnewall, who had earlier represented County Dublin in the Irish House of Commons. The Kingsland Barnewalls were a junior branch of the family of Baron Trimleston; Nicholas's great-grandfather Sir Patrick Barnewall had achieved political prominence through his friendship with Thomas Cromwell and done well out of the Dissolution of the Monasteries. Nicholas was made Baron Turvey at the same time, also in the Peerage of Ireland. His grandson, the third Viscount, was a supporter of James II and outlawed. However, he was restored under the Treaty of Limerick. His son, the fourth Viscount, was a Roman Catholic and consequently disqualified from taking his seat in the Irish House of Lords. He was childless and was succeeded by his nephew, the fifth Viscount. He was the son of the Honourable George Barnewall, younger son of the third Viscount. He died unmarried in 1800 when the titles became dormant. They were successfully claimed in 1814 by Matthew Barnewall, who became the sixth Viscount. He was the great-grandson of the Honourable Richard Barnewall, younger son of the first Viscount. However, he had no surviving male issue and on his death in 1834 the titles are considered to have become extinct.

William St Lawrence, 14th Baron Howth (1688-1748) was an Irish peer and politician, who enjoyed the friendship of Jonathan Swift.

Duel arranged engagement in combat between two individuals

A duel is an arranged engagement in combat between two people, with matched weapons, in accordance with agreed-upon rules. Duels in this form were chiefly practiced in early modern Europe with precedents in the medieval code of chivalry, and continued into the modern period especially among military officers.

Related Research Articles

Earl of Howth

Earl of Howth was a title in the Peerage of Ireland. It was created in 1767 for Thomas St Lawrence, 15th Baron Howth, who was elevated to Viscount St Lawrence at the same time, also in the Peerage of Ireland. The St Lawrence family descended from Christopher St Lawrence who was elevated to the Peerage of Ireland as Baron Howth in about 1425. The third and fourth Barons both served as Lord Chancellor of Ireland. The family's origins are thought to go back to Almeric Tristram, a liegeman of the Anglo-Irish knight John de Courcy, who conquered Howth in 1177.

Roger Jones, 1st Viscount Ranelagh PC (Ire) was a member of the Peerage of Ireland and lord president of Connaught. He was Chief Leader of the Army and Forces of Connaught during the early years of the Irish Confederate Wars. In addition to Viscount Ranelagh, he held the title Baron Jones of Navan.

John Barnewall, 3rd Baron Trimleston, was an Irish nobleman, judge and politician. He was the eldest son of Christopher Barnewall, 2nd Baron Trimlestown and his wife Elizabeth Plunket, daughter of Sir Thomas Fitz-Christopher Plunket of Rathmore, Lord Chief Justice of the King's Bench in Ireland and his second wife Marian Cruise. He succeeded his father as 3rd Baron about 1513.

Arthur Blennerhassett KC was an Anglo-Irish lawyer and politician.

Robert St Lawrence, 3rd Baron Howth was a leading statesman in 15th-century Ireland who held the office of Lord Chancellor of Ireland. Through marriage he was a close connection of the Tudor dynasty.

Nicholas St Lawrence, 4th Baron Howth was a leading Irish soldier and statesman of the early Tudor period, who held the office of Lord Chancellor of Ireland.

Sir Bartholomew Dillon was a leading Irish judge of the sixteenth century who held the offices of Chief Baron of the Irish Exchequer and Chief Justice of the King's Bench in Ireland.

Sir Patrick Barnewall or Barnwall, was the eldest son of Sir Christopher Barnewall of Turvey, Grace Dieu Abbey, and Fieldston. Christopher in turn was the son of the elder Sir Patrick Barnewall, who in 1534 was made Serjeant-at-law (Ireland) and Solicitor-General for Ireland, and in 1550 became Master of the Rolls in Ireland. Patrick's mother was Marion Sherle, daughter of Richard Sherle of County Meath: after his father's death she remarried the prominent judge Sir Lucas Dillon.

Sir Christopher Barnewall (1522–1575) was a leading Anglo-Irish statesman of the Pale in the 1560s and 1570s. He was the effective Leader of the Opposition in the Irish House of Commons in the Parliament of 1568–71. He is remembered for building Turvey House, where he sheltered the future Catholic martyr Edmund Campion, for his impressive tomb in Lusk Church, and for the eulogy to him in Holinshed's Chronicles, which was written by his son-in-law Richard Stanyhurst.

Christopher St Lawrence, 8th Baron Howth was an Irish politician and peer. He was a member of the Privy Council of Ireland, and played a leading part in the Government of Ireland in the 1560s; but he later went into opposition and was imprisoned as a result. He was nicknamed the Blind Lord.

Nicholas St. Lawrence, 9th Baron Howth (c.1550–1607) was a leading member of the Anglo-Irish nobility in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. Despite openly professing his Roman Catholic faith, he enjoyed the trust of Elizabeth I and of successive Lord Deputies of Ireland, and was even forgiven by the English Crown for signing a petition against the Penal Laws.

Nicholas St Lawrence, 11th Baron Howth (1597–1643) was an Anglo-Irish nobleman of the seventeenth century. The Lords of Howth for over a century had played a crucial role in Irish politics; but Nicholas, unlike many of his ancestors, preferred a quiet domestic life. During the English Civil War, his loyalty to the English Crown led to the forfeiture of much of his estate, and the troubles he endured during the conflict are said to have hastened his death.

Christopher St Lawrence, 5th Baron Howth (c.1485–1542) was an Anglo-Irish nobleman and statesman of the Tudor era.

William FitzWilliam, 3rd Viscount FitzWilliam (c.1610–1670) was an Irish nobleman of the Stuart era. He fought on the Royalist side during the English Civil War, but later made his peace with the Cromwellian regime. In his later years he openly professed the Roman Catholic faith, which was then illegal.

Christopher St Lawrence, 2nd Baron Howth was an Anglo-Irish nobleman. He was a key figure in fifteenth-century Irish politics, and one of the strongest supporters in Ireland of the House of York. His tomb can still be seen in the family chapel in St. Mary's Church, Howth.

Baron Skryne was the title of the holder of an Irish feudal barony : it derived from the parish of Skryne, or Skreen, in County Meath. It was not recognised as a barony in the Peerage of Ireland, but was habitually used firstly by the de Feypo family and then by their descendants, the Marwards. The Barons of Skryne were not entitled as of right to sit in the Irish House of Lords, although it seems that in practice the holder of the title was often summoned to the Irish Parliament. The title fell into disuse in the seventeenth century, when the family estates were forfeited to the English Crown. Thomas Marward having been the last Baron of Skryne died in 1568 without male inheritors.

Sir Thomas Fitz-Christopher Plunket (c.1407-1471) was a leading Irish lawyer and judge of the fifteenth century who held office as Lord Chief Justice of Ireland. He was an ancestor of the Duke of Wellington in the female line. His second marriage to the heiress Marian Cruise inspired the ballad The Song of Mary Cruys.

Thomas St Lawrence, 1st Earl of Howth was Anglo-Irish peer and lawyer.


  1. Lodge, John and Archdall, Mervyn Peerage of Ireland Volume 3 J. Moore Dublin 1789
  2. Ball F. Elrington History of Dublin 6 Volumes Alexander Thom and Co Dublin 1902-1920
  3. History of Dublin
  4. Lodge and Archdall Peerage of Ireland