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Kilkenny, statutes of

Kilkenny, statutes of, 1366. Lionel, duke of Clarence, second son of Edward III, was appointed the king's lieutenant in Ireland in 1361. In 1366 he summoned a parliament at Kilkenny, which passed a number of statutes intended to buttress the position of the English. They were not to use the Irish language, or intermarry with the Irish; they were not to sell horses or armour to the Irish; they were forbidden to play hurling but told to practise archery; the Irish were excluded from cathedrals, abbeys, or benefices in the English sector. The preamble referred significantly to the king's ‘Irish enemies’. The statutes, though frequently repeated, did not prevent the Anglo-Irish from becoming Irish-speaking. Draconian though they appear, the provisions were for the most part not new; they applied only to the one-third of the country under Anglo-Irish control; and they were subsequently widely disregarded, either by default or by licence.

J. A. Cannon

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