Baron Inchiquin (Irish: Barún Inse Uí Chuinn) is one of the older titles in the Peerage of Ireland. It was one of two titles created on 1 July 1543 for Murrough O'Brien, Prince of Thomond, who claimed descent from Brian Boru, a High King of Ireland. The grant of the English titles was conditional upon the abandonment of any Irish titles, the adoption of English customs and laws, pledging of allegiance to the Crown, apostasy from the Catholic Church, and conversion to the Church of Ireland. Murrough was made both Earl of Thomond in the Peerage of Ireland, with remainder to his nephew Donough O'Brien and Baron Inchiquin, with remainder to his male heirs.[1] Following the death of his cousin, Conor Myles John O' Brien in June 2023, Conor John Anthony O' Brien is currently the 19th Baron Inchiquin [2]

Barony of Inchiquin
  • Arms: Quarterly: 1st and 4th, Gules three Lions passant guardant in pale per pale Or and Argent; 2nd, Argent three Piles meeting in point issuing from the chief Gules; 3rd, Or a Pheon Azure.
  • Crests: Issuing from a Cloud an Arm embowed brandishing a Sword Argent pommelled and hilted Or.
  • Supporters: On either side a Lion guardant per fess Or and Argent.
Creation date1 July 1543
Created byKing Henry VIII
PeeragePeerage of Ireland
First holderMurrough O'Brien, 1st Earl of Thomond, 1st Baron Inchiquin
Remainder tothe 1st Baron’s heirs male
Subsidiary titlesBaronet 'of Lemenagh'
The O'Brien, Chief of the Name, Prince of Thomond
Seat(s)Thomond House
Former seat(s)Dromoland Castle
Murrough surrenders his royalty to King Henry VIII at Greenwich upon the Thames July 1543 and receives the titles of Baron Inchiquin for his heirs male and Earl of Thomond with special remainder to his nephew Donough.

History edit

On his death in 1551, Murrough was succeeded in the earldom, according to the special remainder, by his nephew, the second Earl (see Earl of Thomond for the later history of this title), but the barony of Inchiquin passed to his son Dermod, the second baron.[3] Dermod's great-great-grandson, the sixth baron, was a prominent military commander during the Irish Confederate Wars (1643–48), first for the English Parliament, then as a Royalist commander during the Cromwellian conquest of Ireland (1649–53) during the Wars of the Three Kingdoms. In 1654 he was created Earl of Inchiquin in the Peerage of Ireland.

He was succeeded by his son, William O'Brien, 2nd Earl of Inchiquin, who served as governor of English Tangier and as Governor of Jamaica. His son, William O'Brien, 3rd Earl of Inchiquin, became Governor of Kinsale in 1693. The fourth earl, also named William O'Brien, represented Windsor, Camelford and Aylesbury in the British House of Commons.

The fifth earl, Murrough O'Brien, was the nephew and son-in-law of his predecessor. In 1800, he was created Marquess of Thomond in the Peerage of Ireland, with remainder to his brother, the Honorable Edward Dominic O'Brien, a captain in the British Army. The following year he was made Baron Thomond of Taplow in the County of Buckingham in the Peerage of the United Kingdom to allow him to sit in the House of Lords, with remainder to the male heirs of his body. He died without male issue in 1808, when the barony of Thomond became extinct.[3]

He was succeeded in the marquessate according to the special remainder, and in the other Irish titles, by his nephew William O'Brien, 2nd Marquess of Thomond, the third son of the aforementioned Captain Edward O'Brien. The second marquess was an Irish representative peer. In 1826 he was created Baron Tadcaster of Tadcaster in the County of York in the Peerage of the United Kingdom. He had no sons and on his death in 1846 the barony of Tadcaster became extinct.

He was succeeded in the Irish peerages by his younger brother, James O'Brien, 3rd Marquess of Thomond, an admiral in the Royal Navy. He had no sons and on his death in 1855 the marquessate and earldom of Inchiquin became extinct.

In 1855, he was succeeded in the barony of Inchiquin by his distant relative Sir Lucius O'Brien, 5th Baronet, who became the 13th Baron Inchiquin. The O'Brien Baronetcy, of Leaghmenagh in the County of Clare, had been created in the Baronetage of Ireland in 1686 for Donough O'Brien, who had earlier represented County Clare in the Irish House of Commons. He was the great-great-grandson and namesake of Donough O'Brien (died 1582), younger son of the first Earl of Thomond and first Baron Inchiquin. His grandson, the second baronet, great-grandson the third baronet, and great-great-grandson the fourth baronet, also represented County Clare in the Irish Parliament, with the fourth baronet also representing Ennis. The latter was succeeded by his son, the fifth baronet.

Before becoming the 13th Baron, the fifth Baronet O'Brien had represented County Clare in the House of Commons and was later an Irish Representative Peer. He also served as Lord Lieutenant of County Clare. He was succeeded by his son, Edward O'Brien, 14th Baron Inchiquin, also an Irish Representative Peer and Lord Lieutenant of County Clare. His son, Lucius O'Brien, 15th Baron Inchiquin, also sat in the House of Lords as an Irish Representative Peer, and also served in the British military and had been appointed High Sheriff of Clare in 1898, and justice of the peace of Salop.[4]

According to Desmond Oulton (owner of Clontarf Castle), his father John George Oulton had suggested to Éamon de Valera towards the end of the Irish Free State, that Ireland should have its own king again, as it was in the times of Gaelic Ireland.[5] He suggested to him, a member of the O'Brien Clan, descended in the paternal line from Brian Boru, a previous High King of Ireland: the most senior representative at the time was Donough O'Brien, 16th Baron Inchiquin.[5] Oulton said that Donough's nephew Conor O'Brien, 18th Baron Inchiquin, confirmed that De Valera did offer Donough O'Brien the title of Prince-President of the Irish Republic, but this was turned down and so a President of Ireland was instituted instead.[5] The 16th Baron was succeeded by his younger brother Phaedrig O'Brien, 17th Baron Inchiquin, a consulting geologist, who in turn was succeeded by his nephew, the 18th baron.[6] Following the death of the 18th baron in 2023, the direct male line of the 15th baron failed; the 18th baron was succeeded by his second cousin.[6]

In the Gaelic nobility, Lord Inchiquin is The O'Brien, Chief of the Name, Prince of Thomond.

The family seat of the O'Brien Baronetcy was Dromoland Castle, near Newmarket-on-Fergus, County Clare. The current Baron Inchiquin lives in Thomond House adjacent to Dromoland.

Barons Inchiquin (1543) edit

Earls of Inchiquin (1654) edit

Marquesses of Thomond (1800) edit

Barons Inchiquin (1543; reverted) edit

The heir apparent is the present peer's son, Hon. Fionn Murrough O'Brien (born 1987).[6]

O'Brien Baronets, of Leaghmenagh (1686) edit

See above for further succession.

Line of succession (simplified) edit

Line of succession, simplified)
  •   Edward O'Brien, 14th Baron Inchiquin (1839–1900)[7]
    • Hon. Murrough O'Brien (1866–1934)[7]
      • Murrough Richard O'Brien (1910–2000)[6]
        •   Conor O'Brien, 19th Baron Inchiquin (born 1952)[6]
          • (1). Hon. Fionn Murrough O'Brien (born 1987)[6]
    • Hon. Henry Barnaby O'Brien (1887–1969)[7]
      • Michael George O'Brien (1928–2008)[6]
        • (2). Peter Thomond O'Brien (born 1961)[6]
          • (3). Angus John Thomond O'Brien (born 1995)[6]
        • (4). John Michael O'Brien (born 1964)[6]

There are further heirs in line descended from the 13th Baron (father of the 14th Baron) and earlier generations.


The O'Brien line of Conor O'Brien, Chief of the name edit

There is some overlap with the Barons Inchiquin; those people are marked off in bold.

Art and culture edit

Lord Inchiquin is the name of a traditional Irish air by O'Carolan, assumed to be dedicated to his contemporary William O'Brien, 4th Earl of Inchiquin.

The painter George O'Brien, who made his name as an artist in New Zealand, was a descendant of the first Baron Inchiquin.

See also edit

References edit

Notes edit

  1. ^ O'Brien, Ivar (1986). O'Brien of Thomond: The O'Briens in Irish History 1500–1865. Chichester: Phillimore. pp. 14–15. ISBN 0-85033-582-5.
  2. ^ MacNaughton, Ollie (11 July 2023). "Lord Inchiquin, descendant of the 11th-century High King of Ireland, has died at 79". The Tatler.
  3. ^ a b (Chisholm 1911, p. 869)
  4. ^ Hesilrige 1921, p. 500.
  5. ^ a b c (O'Keeffe 2013, p. 21)
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Morris, Susan; Bosberry-Scott, Wendy; Belfield, Gervase, eds. (2019). "Inchiquin, Baron". Debrett's Peerage and Baronetage. Vol. 1 (150th ed.). London: Debrett's Ltd. pp. 1939–1945. ISBN 978-1-999767-0-5-1.
  7. ^ a b c d Mosley, Charles, ed. (1999). "Inchiquin". Burke's Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage, Baronetage and Knightage. Vol. 1 (106th ed.). Crans, Switzerland: Burke's Peerage (Genealogical Books) Ltd. pp. 1494–1502. ISBN 2-940085-02-1.
  8. ^ MacNaughton, Ollie (11 July 2023). "Lord Inchiquin, descendant of the 11th-century High King of Ireland, has died at 79".

Sources edit

Further reading edit