County Palatine of Tipperary Act 1715

The County Palatine of Tipperary Act 1715 is an Act of the Parliament of Ireland (2 Geo 1 c. 8). This Act enabled the purchase by the crown of the Palatine Rights in the County Tipperary given to the Earls of Ormond, later Dukes of Ormonde, over the preceding centuries. Prior to the Act, the dukes appointed the sheriffs and judges of the county and owned certain revenues from the county which would otherwise have gone to the Crown.

The passing of the Act was followed almost at once by the attainder for treason of James Butler, 2nd Duke of Ormonde, who fled to France on suspicion of being involved in the Jacobite Rising of 1715. Although his titles and estates were restored at the end of the eighteenth century to another branch of the Butler family, there was no question of reviving the Palatine Court, which was by then an anachronism.

List of justices of the Palatine Court of TipperaryEdit

Although the position of Chief Judge, or Seneschal, of the Palatine Court was widely regarded as a sinecure, it is interesting to note that several holders of the office were lawyers of repute, and at least two later held high judicial office. They included:

Second justice of the Palatine CourtEdit

There was also a second justice, sometimes called the Master of the Rolls, attached to the Palatine court, which suggests that the Court's workload may have been heavier than generally believed. The name of at least three of the second justices are known:


  • Ball, F. Elrington The Judges in Ireland 1221-1921 London John Murray 1926
  • Hart, A. R. History of the King's Serjeant-at-law in Ireland Dublin Four Courts Press 2000
  • Hayton, David The Anglo-Irish Experience 1680-1730, Politics, Identity and Patriotism Boydell Press 2012