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Sarsfield, Patrick

Sarsfield, Patrick (c.1650–93). Jacobite earl of Lucan. Born to a catholic family of mixed Anglo-Norman and Gaelic ancestry, Sarsfield entered the Irish army in 1678. He then served in the English regiments which Charles II detached to fight in the army of Louis XIV of France, but returned to England at the succession of James II in 1685, and helped to crush Monmouth's rising. When James and Tyrconnel radically catholicized the Irish army Sarsfield was a beneficiary, commanding Irish troops in England in 1688. He fled to France with James, returning with him to Ireland in 1689.

In the war that followed Sarsfield rose rapidly to major-general. After fighting at the Boyne, he emerged as the voice of the Gaelic nobility to whom Tyrconnel's exclusively Anglo-Norman counter-revolution offered nothing. His attacks on Williamite supply lines forced the raising of the first siege of Limerick but, after defeat at Aughrim, he concluded the second siege of Limerick on terms which allowed him to sail for France. Louis XIV made him a French general, James II a peer in 1691. He was mortally wounded at the battle of Landen.

Bruce Philip Lenman

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Sarsfield, Patrick, earl of Lucan

Patrick Sarsfield, earl of Lucan (särs´fēld, lōō´kən), d. 1693, Irish Jacobite general. A firm supporter of James II, he went with him into exile. He commanded James's forces in Ireland and had some successes, but defeat by William III in the battle of the Boyne (1690) destroyed the Jacobite hopes in Ireland. He was forced (1691) to arrange the disadvantageous treaty of Limerick, surrendering that city. Allowed to go to France, he took thousands of Irish soldiers with him into French service in the War of the Grand Alliance. He fought at Steenkerke (1692) and was mortally wounded at Neerwinden.

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