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O'Neill, Daniel

O'Neill, Daniel (1612–64). Daniel O'Neill was an Ulster protestant and made a living in the 1630s as a volunteer soldier fighting for the Dutch. He returned to England when the Bishops' wars commenced and was captured at Newburn in 1640 fighting for the king. He dabbled in royalist conspiracy, was confined by Parliament to the Tower, but made his escape in women's clothes. He joined Charles's army in 1642 and in 1644 was sent to Ireland to raise troops. He returned to fight at Marston Moor, Lostwithiel, the second battle of Newbury, and Naseby. From 1645 to 1650 he was in Ireland trying to rescue the king's cause. He next joined Charles II in Holland, fought alongside him at Worcester in 1651, and escaped to The Hague. At the Restoration he became an MP, was given a pension and property, and in 1663 appointed postmaster-general. He died in 1664 causing Charles to regret ‘as honest a man as ever lived and a good servant’. Clarendon admired his dexterity and adroitness.

J. A. Cannon

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