|Earl of Roscommon|
|Predecessor||Robert, 2nd Earl of Roscommon|
|Successor||Wentworth, 4th Earl of Roscommon|
|Father||Robert, 2nd Earl of Roscommon|
Sir James Dillon, 3rd Earl of Roscommon (c. 1605 – 1649) was an Irish magnate and politician. He was born a Catholic but converted as a young age to the Church of Ireland. He supported Strafford during his term as governor of Ireland. In the Confederate Wars and the Cromwellian conquest he was a royalist. He died in 1649, but was nevertheless included as the fifth on the list of people that were excluded from pardon in Cromwell's 1652 Act of Settlement.
Birth and origin
James was born about 1605 in Ireland, the eldest son of Robert Dillon and his first wife Margaret Barry. His father was the second Earl of Roscommon. His family was Old English and descended from Sir Henry Dillon who came to Ireland with Prince John in 1185. His family held substantial lands in Meath, Westmeath, Longford and Roscommon.
James's mother was a daughter of David de Barry, 5th Viscount Buttevant. Her family, the de Barry family is another Old English family. Her ancestor John Barry was created Viscount Buttevant by Richard II in 1385.
James was one of five brothers including two half-brothers, one from each of the two other marriages of his father.
|Robert among his brothers and half-brothers|
|1||1st wife||James||(c. 1605 – 1649)|
|2||1st wife||Lucas||-died childless|
|3||1st wife||David||-died an infant|
|4||2nd wife||Henry||(died 1640), died unmarried|
|5||3rd wife||#Carey||(1627–1689), became the 5th Earl Roscommon and was the "Colonel Dillon" of the Diary of Samuel Pepys|
Nothing seems to be known about his sisters.
His father's family were traditionally Roman Catholic, which is why his father, despite his record of loyalty to the Crown, was never fully trusted by King Charles I of England. James, however, was converted to the Church of Ireland by James Ussher, Archbishop of Armagh.
On 24 January 1620 his grandfather was raised to the peerage with the title of Baron Dillon of Kilkenny-West, in the Peerage of Ireland. in a ceremony performed by the Lord Deputy Oliver St. John in the Presence Chamber of Dublin Castle on 25 January.
On 5 August 1622 James's grandfather was further honoured by being created Earl of Roscommon. In consequence of this advancement, Robert, the heir apparent, James's father, was styled Lord Kilkenny-West, as a courtesy title from 1622 to 1641.
Marriage and children
In late September or early October 1636 James Dillon married Elizabeth Wentworth, daughter of Sir William Wentworth and Anne Atkins at Lowton Hall, Essex. She was a sister of Thomas Wentworth, 1st Earl of Strafford, the formidable and (for a while), all-powerful Lord Deputy of Ireland. James's father was a staunch supporter and a personal friend of Strafford, and the marriage was clearly intended to strengthen English rule in Ireland through family alliances between leading English and Anglo-Irish families.
James and Elizabeth had a son:
Dillon was knighted before or in 1639 and thus became Sir James Dillon. The same year he stood as MP, or "knight of the shire" as county MPs were then still called, for County Longford in the Parliament of 1640–1649,[b] the second of Charles I. Sir James was elected as one of the two members for Longford County on 28 February 1640.
Parliament met on 16 March 1640. In its first session the parliament unanimously voted four subsidies of £45,000 to raise an Irish army of 9,000 for use by the king against the Scots in the Bishops' Wars. Dillon must have voted in favour. On 31 March 1640 Wentworth prorogued parliament until the first week of June.
On 3 April 1640, Strafford (i.e. Wentworth) left Ireland, called to England by the king to help him manage the Bishops war against the Scots. Strafford appointed Christopher Wandesford as Lord Deputy to govern Ireland in his absence. Wandesford opened the second parliamentary session on 1 June 1640. News from England was the Short Parliament had refused subsidies to the king. The Irish MPs regretted having voted subsidies and wanted to sabotage their action by changing how the subsidies would be evaluated and collected. After two weeks of inconclusive discussions, Wandesford prorogued parliament on 17 June.
Parliament reconvened for the third session on 1 October. The House of Commons formed a committee for grievances that compiled a remonstrance (complaint) against Strafford. The remonstrance was then approved by the House of Commons. Sir James must have voted against it in order to support Strafford. Wandesford prorogued parliament on 12 November, a day after Strafford's impeachment in Westminster by the Long Parliament.
In March 1641 James's grandfather died and his father succeeded as the 2nd Earl. His tenure was, however, a short one as he died on 27 August 1642 in Oxmantown, a residential quarter in Dublin's Northside. James succeeded as the 3rd Earl of Roscommon. He had to abandon his seat in the lower house and gained a seat in the House of Lords, which he took on the 17 November 1642.
|Table of sessions: Parliament 1640–1649|
|Sir James only attended the first five sessions of this parliament as an MP.|
|1st||16 Mar 1640||31 Mar 1640||Voted 4 subsidies|
|2nd||1 Jun 1640||17 Jun 1640||Trying to change how the subsidies would be evaluated and collected|
|3rd||1 Oct 1640||12 Nov 1640||Remonstrance voted|
|4th||26 Jan 1641||6 Mar 1641||Impeachment of Strafford and Radcliffe|
|5th||11 May 1641||7 Aug 1641|
|6th||9 Nov 1641||9 Nov 1641||Adjourned on the same day|
|16 Nov 1641||17 Nov 1641||Voted a protest against the rising|
|7th||11 Jan 1642|
|8th||1 Aug 1642|
|9th||14 Dec 1642|
|10th||20 Apr 1643|
Death and timeline
He died at Limerick in October 1649, at the house of the Anglican Bishop Bramhall, of an accidental fall down a flight of stairs. According to legend, his son, then in exile at Caen, knew of his death at the moment it happened, although the official news of the death did not reach him until two weeks later.
|15||1620, 24 Jan||Grandfather created Baron of Kilkenny-West.|
|17||1622, 5 Aug||Grandfather created Earl of Roscommon.|
|20||1625, 27 Mar||Accession of King Charles I, succeeding King James I|
|27||1632, 12 Jan||Thomas Wentworth, later Earl of Strafford, appointed Lord Deputy of Ireland|
|31||1636, Sep or Oct||Married Elizabeth Wentworth.|
|34||1639, 28 Feb||Returned as MP for Longford County.|
|35||1640, 16 Mar||Parliament opened|
|35||1640, Dec||Father appointed as one of the Lord Justices of Ireland.|
|36||1641, 12 May||Strafford beheaded.|
|36||1641, Mar||Grandfather died and his father succeeded as 2nd Earl.|
|36||1641, 23 Oct||Outbreak of the Rebellion|
|37||1642, 27 Aug||Father died in Oxmantown, Dublin and he succeeded as the 3rd Earl of Roscommon.|
|37||1642, 17 Nov||Took his seat in the Irish House of Lords|
|44||1649, 30 Jan||King Charles I beheaded.|
|44||1649, Oct||Died in Limerick.|
Notes, citations, and sources
- This family tree is partly derived from the Roscommon pedigree in Cokayne. Also see the lists of siblings and children in the text.
- Also called the "Parliament 1639–1649" because it opened on 2 March 1640, which date was still in the year 1639 according to the Old Style (O.S.) calendar, in force in Ireland at the time, as the year started on 25 March in O.S.
- Cokayne 1895, p. 411, line 19: "[James] s. and h. [son and heir] by his 1st wife, b. [born] about 1605;"
- Webb 1878, p. 149, line 7: "... [Sir Henry Dillon] came to Ireland in 1185 as secretary to Prince John ..."
- Beatson 1806, p. 141"1385 25. John Barry Lord Barry—Viscount Buttevant, in the County of Corke."
- Cokayne 1895, p. 414.
- Burke 1832, p. 367, left column, line 30: "His Lordship [the 2nd Earl] m. first Margaret, daughter of David Earl of Barrymore, by whom he had JAMES, Lord Dillon, and another son Lucas who d. s.p."
- Burke 1832, p. 367, left column, line 33: "The Earl m. secondly Lady Dorothy Hastings, youngest daughter of George, fourth Earl of Huntingdon and widow of Sir James Steuart, by whom he had Henry, who d. unmarried;"
- Burke 1832, p. 367, left column, line 37: "... and, thirdly, Anne, daughter of Sir William Stroud, and widow of Lord Folliet, by whom he had a son, Carey, who succeeded as fifth earl."
- Pepys 1893, p. 217: "Aug. 8, 1660. We found them very pretty, and Coll. Dillon there, a very merry and witty companion ..."
- Burke 1832, p. 367, left column, line 42: "This nobleman says Anthony a Wood, 'was reclaimed, when young, from the superstitions of the Roman church by primate Ussher ..."
- Cokayne 1895, p. 410, line 21: "... was cr. [created] 24 Jan. 1619/20 Lord Dillon, Baron of Kilkenny-West [I [Ireland]]."
- Lodge 1789, p. 158, line 5: "... the ceremony thereof was performed by the L. D. St John in the Presence-Chamber on the 25 ..."
- Cokayne 1895, p. 410, line 22: "... being subsequently cr. [created] 5 Aug. 1622 Earl of Roscommon [I. [Ireland]]."
- Cokayne 1895, p. 411: "He m. [married] late in Sep., or early on Oct. 1636, at Lowton Hall, co. Essex, Elizabeth, sister of the Earl of Strafford ..."
- Wedgwood 1961, p. 205: "Wentworth arranged the marriage of his sister Elizabeth, of his brother George, of the Lord and Lady Dungarvan;"
- Gillespie 2004, p. 226: "... [Wentworth] was born in Dublin, probably in St George's Lane in October 1637."
- King 1982, p. 200: "The influence of imitations and translations on the increasing elegance of Restoration verse can be seen from such versified criticism as the Earl of Roscommon's ... translation of Horace's Art of Poetry (1680) and his often-praised An Essay of Translated Verse (1684) ..."
- Cokayne 1895, p. 411, line 22: "He was knighted v.p."
- House of Commons 1878, p. 625: "1639 28 Feb. Sir James Dillon, knt. Moymet Westmeath Longford County"
- Gerard 1913, p. 739, right column: "[The year began]... from 1155 till the reform of the calendar in 1752 on 25 March, so that 24 March was the last day ..."
- Asch 2004, p. 152, right column, line 18: "... the Irish Parliament which had met on 16 March."
- Wedgwood 1961, p. 276, line 4: "... they voted four subsidies of £45,000 each without a single negative ..."
- Wedgwood 1961, p. 277, line 8: "The Irish Parliament had agreed on the provision of a force of eight thousand foot and a thousand horse."
- Asch 2004, p. 152, right column, line 43: "The Irish parliament was prorogued on 31 March  ..."
- Wedgwood 1961, p. 277, line 4: "... he [Wentworth] prorogued Parliament until the first week in June ..."
- Wedgwood 1961, p. 278: "On the evening of Good Friday, April 3rd, he [Wentworth] took leave of his wife and his friend, Wandesford, not knowing ..."
- Gardiner 1904, p. 155, line 3: "The Parliament of Ireland met for its second session on June 1."
- Wedgwood 1961, p. 291, line 12: "... Christopher Wandesford, now Lord Deputy, opened the second session of Parliament in June."
- Gardiner 1904, p. 120: "... the refusal of the House of Commons to support him."
- Wedgwood 1961, p. 291: "... protests about the subsidies — so vociferously voted three months before. The Commons were resolved first to reorganize the basis of assessment and undo the work ..."
- Wedgwood 1961, p. 291, penultimate line: "After an unprofitable fortnight, Wandesford prorogued Parliament until October."
- Clarke 1976, p. 277: "On the same day, Christopher Wandesford, deputising for the lord lieutenant, prorogued parliament to 1 October."
- Wedgwood 1961, p. 320: "Poor Christopher Wandesford, as Lord Deputy, exerted no control at all; he had managed to prorogue the house, but not until after the remonstrance had been voted."
- Mountmorres 1792b, p. 40: "... but the parliament was prorogued on that day, to prevent any further proceedings until the 26 of January following."
- Cokayne 1895, p. 411, line 3b: "He [James, 1st Earl] d. March 1641."
- Cokayne 1895, p. 411, line 17: "He d. at Oxmantown, 27 Aug. 1642, and was bur. 7 Sep. in St Patricks, Dublin."
- Burke 1832, p. 367, left column, line 40: "His lordship d. 7th September 1642 and was succeeded by his eldest son, JAMES, third earl."
- House of Lords 1779, p. 187, left column: "Die Jovis, 17o Novembris, 1642o ... Earl of Roscommon brought in by the Earl of Kildare, and Lord Viscount Moore."
- Kearney 1959, p. 209: "The Irish parliament sat from January 26 to March 4, and from May 11 to August 7."
- Mountmorres 1792b, p. 44: "From the 28th of February to the 6th of March one thousand six hundred and forty, on which last day the articles of impeachment ..."
- Mountmorres 1792a, p. 353: "... prorogation from the 4th of March to the 11th May;"
- Bagwell 1909a, p. 328: "Parliament met accordingly on November 9 and immediately adjourned till the 16th ..."
- Mountmorres 1792a, p. 354: "The parliament met on the 1st of August one thousand six hundred and forty-two after a long interval during which the rebellion had broken out."
- Cokayne 1895, p. 411, line 29: "He d. [died] at the house of Bishop Bramhall, Limerick, of a fall down a great pair of stairs."
- Aubrey 1696, p. 89: "The Lord Roscomon, being a Boy of Ten Years of age at Caen in Normandy ... he cries out My Father is Dead."
- Fryde et al. 1986, p. 44, line 16: "Charles I. ... acc. 27 Mar. 1625 ..."
- Asch 2004, p. 146, right column, line 23: "Wentworth was appointed lord deputy on 12 January 1632 ..."
- Burke 1866, p. 577, left column, line 3: "He [Strafford] suffered death with characteristic firmness on Tower Hill, 12 May 1641."
- Warner 1768, p. 6: "... the twenty-third October  ... seized all the towns, castles, and houses belonging to the Protestants which they had force enough to possess;"
- Fryde et al. 1986, p. 44, line 17: "Charles I. ... exec. 30 Jan. 1649 ..."
- Asch, Ronald G. (2004). "Wentworth, Thomas, first earl of Strafford (1593–1641)". In Matthew, Colin; Harrison, Brian (eds.). Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. 56. New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 142–157. ISBN 0-19-861408-X.
- Aubrey, John (1696). Miscellanies. London: Edward Castle. OCLC 1049629740.
- Bagwell, Richard (1909a). Ireland under the Stuarts and under the Interregnum. 1. London: Longmans, Green, and Co. OCLC 458582656. – 1603 to 1642
- Beatson, Robert (1806). A Political Index to the Histories of Great Britain and Ireland. 3 (3rd ed.). London: Longman, Hurst, Rees, and Orme. OCLC 2228463. – Scotland & Ireland
- Burke, John (1832). A General and Heraldic Dictionary of the Peerage and Baronetage of the British Empire. 2 (4th ed.). London: Henry Colburn and Richard Bentley. OCLC 39018719. – Ibbetson to Zouche (for Roscommon)
- Burke, Bernard (1866). A Genealogical History of the Dormant, Abeyant, Forfeited and Extinct Peerages of the British Empire (New ed.). London: Harrison. OCLC 11501348.
- Clarke, Aidan (1976). "Ormond, Rinuccini, and the confederates". In Moody, Theodore William; Martin, F. X.; Byrne, Francis John (eds.). A New History of Ireland. 3. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 270–288. ISBN 978-0-1982-0242-4. – 1640 to 1641
- Cokayne, George Edward (1895). Complete Peerage of England, Scotland, Ireland, Great Britain and the United Kingdom, Extant, Extinct, or Dormant. 6 (1st ed.). London: George Bell and Sons. OCLC 1180818801. – N to R (for Roscommon)
- Fryde, E. B.; Greenway, D. E.; Porter, S.; Roy, I., eds. (1986). Handbook of British Chronology. Royal Historical Society Guides and Handbooks, No. 2 (3rd ed.). London: Offices of the Royal Historical Society. ISBN 0-86193-106-8. (for timeline)
- Gardiner, Samuel Rawson (1904). History of England from the Accession of James I to the Outbreak of the Civil War. 9. London: Longmans, Green & Co. OCLC 559091724. – 1639 to 1641
- Gerard, John (1913). "Chronology, General". In Herbermann, Charles George (ed.). Catholic Encyclopedia. 3. New York: The Encyclopedia Press. pp. 738–742. OCLC 1157968788.
- Gillespie, Stuart (2004). "Dillon, Wentworth, fourth Earl of Roscommon". In Matthew, Colin; Harrison, Brian (eds.). Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. 16. New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 226–228. ISBN 0-19-8613660.
- House of Commons (1878). Return. Members of Parliament – Part II. Parliaments of Great Britain, 1705–1796. Parliaments of the United Kingdom, 1801–1874. Parliaments and Conventions of the Estates of Scotland, 1357–1707. Parliaments of Ireland, 1599–1800. London: H. M. Stationery Office. OCLC 13112546. (for the subject MP)
- House of Lords (1779). Journals of the House of Lords (PDF). 1. Dublin: William Sleater. OCLC 35009219. – 1634 to 1699
- Kearney, Hugh F. (1959). Strafford in Ireland 1633–1641 – a Study in Absolutism. Manchester: Manchester University Press. OCLC 857142293.
- King, Bruce (1982). Seventeenth Century English Literature. New York: Schocken books. ISBN 0-8052-0771-6.
- Lodge, John (1789). Archdall, Mervyn (ed.). The Peerage of Ireland or, A Genealogical History of the Present Nobility of that Kingdom. 4. Dublin: James Moore. OCLC 264906028. – Viscounts (for Dillon)
- Mountmorres, Hervey Redmond Morres, Viscount (1792a). The History of the Principal Transactions of the Irish Parliament from the Year 1634 to 1666. 1. London: T. Cadell. OCLC 843863159. – House of Lords
- Mountmorres, Hervey Redmond Morres, Viscount (1792b). The History of the Principal Transactions of the Irish Parliament from the Year 1634 to 1666. 2. London: T. Cadell. OCLC 843863159. – House of Commons
- Pepys, Samuel (1893). Wheatley, Henry Benjamin (ed.). The Diary of Samuel Pepys. 1. London: George Bell and Sons. OCLC 503692830. – 1 January 1660 to 30 March 1660/1
- Warner, Ferdinand (1768). History of the Rebellion and Civil-War in Ireland. 1. Dublin: James William. OCLC 82770539. – 1641 to 1643
- Webb, Alfred (1878). "Dillon, Theobald, Viscount". Compendium of Irish Biography. Dublin: M. H. Gill & Son. p. 149.
- Wedgwood, Cicely Veronica (1961). Thomas Wentworth, First Earl of Strafford 1593–1641. A Revaluation. London: Jonathan Cape. OCLC 1068569885.