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Yellow Ford, battle of the

Yellow Ford, battle of the, 1598. Sometimes known as the battle of the Blackwater, this was one of the last great victories of the Irish over their English antagonists. The great Hugh O'Neill (Tyrone) was in rebellion and even his opponents conceded that he had brought together, not a scratch army capable only of guerrilla warfare, but a trained and equipped body of troops who could engage the enemy in pitched battle. The encounter was precipitated by an English attempt to relieve an advanced fort on the Blackwater. Sir Henry Bagenal's advance was fiercely resisted on 14 August 1598 and when he was killed, his army of 5,000 fled. One result of the disaster is that Elizabeth's favourite Essex was sent to retrieve the situation.

J. A. Cannon

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