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Boyne Aftermath

The Boyne is not a costly battle by the standards of the day. The Jacobites take slightly more than 1,500 while the Williamites lose around 1,000. Many of these losses are disproportionately taken on a few units on each side, while the majority of units suffer l little or any loss. In contrast the battle of Flurus fought within days of the Boyne in the Low countries results in over 12,000 casualties.
The Jacobites will continue the fight under Patrick Sarsfield for another 18 months. Sarsfield, a fierce Irish patriot, instills determination to resist against the Williamites. He turns the struggle into a patriotic struggle against the English in an effort to arouse the populace. But the gesture is too late. He will lead an inspired defense in the siege of Limerick in which a daring raid by his cavalry will destroy the Williamite siege train, thereby delaying the capture of the city. Limerick, as the second city of Ireland has thick walls and proves difficult to take. The Williamites will have to return in 1691 to finally capture it.
William leaves Ireland to attend to matters in England and the Continent. A recent French defeat of the Anglo-Dutch fleet at Beachy-Head in the English Channel as well as another French land victory at Flurus in the Low countries has England fearful of a possible French invasion.
Under Baron Ginkel the Williamites continue the campaign. Another battle is fought at Aughrim in 1691 in which the Jacobites are decisively defeated, losing over 7,000 in the process. It is a far heavier defeat than the Boyne and will prove the death-nell of the Jacobite cause in Ireland. Tyconnell dies of ill health shortly after the battle. Oddly enough it is Aughrim that ensures the Williamite cause in Ireland, even though the Boyne is the battle most remembered. The Williamites renew the siege of Limerick forcing its final capitulation a few months later. In the peace negotiations that follow Patrick Sarsfield is heard to say "change Kings and we would fight you again."
A Treaty is drawn up in which the Williamites agree not to molest adherents of the Catholic faith. William advocates freedom of religious expression. The French are allowed to go home, as well as any Irish Jacobites who wish to join them. Patrick Sarsfield and 12,000 Irish soldiers agree to leave and will seek service as the famed Wild-Geese under Louis XIV. Sarsfield soldiers on and will die at the battle of Landen in 1693 which is a defeat for the Williamites by the French. His last words: "If Only it was for Ireland"
Battle of Aughrim
After their defeat in the Battle of the Boyne the Jacobites retreat and stood firm behind the River Shannon. Immediately after the battle James II went to France. Until his death in 1701 he lived in exile. King William III returned to England in September 1690, after a failed attempt to take the town of Limerick, and passed the command over to Godert de Ginkel.
With the conquest of Cork and Kinsale in September and October 1690 the Williamites controlled the provinces Ulster, Leinster and Munster. Successes of the French army, led by the French King Louis XIV, on mainland Europe strengthen the moral of the Jacobite forces in Connacht. They refused to surrender and raised some serious skirmishes in the winter of 1690 - 1691.
On 7 July 1690 Ginkel offered the Jacobites a change to surrender under reasonable conditions, among which a general pardon and security of property. The Jacobites refused and the Williamites marched westwards.
The Williamite advance was seriously delayed by the ten day siege of Athlone, giving the Jacobites, by then under command of Charles Chalmont, the opportunity to prepare an engagement near Aughrim.
Chalmont had picked the location with great care. What looked like a solid limestone plain was in fact a limestone slab surrounded by bog.
Unaware of the treacherous surface and veiled in mist a large portion of Ginkel's army got caught in the bog and slaughtered. At the same time the Jacobites pulled the teeth of the Williamite army by capturing a large battery of artillery. For a moment the Battle of Aughrim seemed to lead to a Jacobite victory, but when the Williamites found a pathway to the slab the Jacobites found themselves trapped.
More than 7000 men died on 12 July 1691, making the Battle of Aughrim the bloodiest recorded battle on Irish soil ever.
The Irish-France army was effectively defeated. The town of Galway surrendered after a brief siege. Sarsfield, the commanding officer of the Jacobian garrison of Limerick, asked for a cease-fire on 23 September. Ginkel and Sarsfield worked out the Treaty of Limerick and the Williamite War was over.

Battle of Aughrim, 1691

The eventful day that was to decide the fate of the town was now drawing nigh. On the 12th of July, 1691, the hostile armies of the two contending monarchs met on the memorable plains of Aughrim, whence the noise of their cannon might be easily heard at its gates. It is not our intention to enter into a description of the sanguinary and decisive engagement which here took place: the news of its result was known that night in the town, whither several of the fugitives fled for shelter. The alarm of the inhabitants may be easily conceived to have been extreme, and every preparation was made for defence. Many, however, were so panic-struck, that they would have compromised for their safety by immediately surrendering almost on any terms. Lord Dillon, the governor, the French lieutenant general D'Ussone, and the other officers of rank in the town, immediately held a council of war. It appeared that the town, though strong and well stored with provisions, was deficient in men and arms, which were drawn away by degrees to supply other exigencies. The garrison consisted but seven regiments of foot with a few troops of horse, and these neither full nor well armed; but their great dependance was on the promises of Balldearg O'Donnell, whom they hourly expected from Iar-Connaught with the troops under his command.

Though thus circumstanced, it was unanimously resolved to defend the town. General Ginckle, the English commander, having judged it necessary to reduce Galway before he should proceed to Limerick, after a few days delay to refresh his troops, marched on the 17th of July towards Athenry, and encamped on the surrounding plains. On the same day he advanced, with a party, three miles nearer Galway, to a rising ground, from whence he could see the shipping in the bay. On his return to the camp he found a Mr. Shaw, a merchant of the town, (who, with a few other Protestants, had that morning escaped,) from whom he received a full account how matters stood within. This information was the most satisfactory, as it differed entirely from what he had previously received from others, that the garrison consisted of five thousand men, and those well armed; that the stores were considerable, and the town almost impregnable; that Sarsfield, with the whole of the Irish horse, was upon his march with a resolution to raise the siege; and that Ballderg's party was about six thousand strong: all which led him to apprehend that he would have more trouble with Galway than he expected, and the siege would be protracted to the ensuing winter; a circumstance which, above all others, he was most anxious to avoid Seige of the town.

At this juncture, Denis Daly, of Carrownekelly, in the county of Galway, esq. second justice of the court of common pleas, and one of the privy counsellors of James II despatched a messenger to general Ginckle, desiring that a party might be sent for him, who should seemingly force him from his habitation; a circumstance which he conceived would lead to a more speedy surrender of the town. It seems that this gentleman, whose distinguished worth and integrity had gained him the confidence and esteem of all parties, had, with the other principal gentlemen of the county, for several months previous to the battle of Aughrim, held a correspondence with the English government, for the submission and general pacification of this part of the kingdom; to effect which, he proposed, amongst other things, the surrender of Galway. He had measures preconcerted with a few of the principal inhabitants of the town for the purpose, who, clearly foreseeing that resistance would be useless, had privately authorized the proposal, promising all their assistance to have the town delivered up, and that on stipulated terms, much more advantageous than those subsequently obtained by capitulation. Matters being so arranged, a party of the English army had, in the preceding winter, marched as far as the Shannon, on their way towards Galway; but the French party having, in the mean time, gained the entire ascendency of the town, the project failed. On the present occasion, however, judge Daly conceived that the apparent forcible seisure of his person would induce those with whom he had formerly negociated, (and by whose assent he had made the undertaking to government,) to excite a party in the town who would insist on a surrender, to prevent the useless effusion of human blood: but in this he was also disappointed, for the French faction still prevailed; and though some of the magistrates and many of the townsmen were for surrendering, several of them were imprisoned for declaring their intentions. The defence of the town was therefore, as already mentioned, determined upon; and Ginckle, encouraged by the information of Shaw, at length resolved to besiege it.
This resolution was, however, considered by some as too premature: the summer was now advanced, and Limerick, the principal strength and dependance of the nation, was yet to be reduced. The capture of Galway, it was considered, would immediately follow that of Limerick, or, should it even hold out that it would be more easily taken by a winter siege than that important place, which, the year before, had defeated the English army, commanded by the king in person. It was, therefore, concluded that it would be more advisable to station sufficient forces in Athenry, Loughrea, and the other neighbouring towns and positions, to keep the garrison of Galway in awe, and, with the main body of the army, while it was fresh and flushed with victory, immediately to lay siege to Limerick. The general, however, more prudently reflected on the danger of leaving so considerable a place as Galway behind him, which, although the garrison was then weak, might be reinforced by Balldearg O'Donnell, or by French troops which were daily expected in the bay, and thereby become too powerful for his army, which had already been considerably reduced. For these reasons, he resolved to lose no time in commencing the siege, and made every necessary preparation for the purpose. He immediately informed the lords justices of his determination; and they dispatched an express to captain Cole, commander of a squadron then cruising about the mouth of the Shannon, to sail with all expedition to Galway; and empowered him to offer conditions, in case the town should make proposals; but he did not arrive until after its surrender, and was then ordered to return to his former station.

While these preparations were making for the siege, the town was equally active in preparing for defence. The French began to repair the fortified works on the hill; the town's-people were employed on the fort, near the south-east corner of the wall; several strong works were thrown up to defend the east gate, and all the cabins and hedges round the suburbs were levelled. Within the walls eight guns were planted on the upper citadel; near it was a platform of six, and eight or ten more were raised at the south-east corner. Upon the turret, which stood towards the middle of the long curtain that extended next the bay, there were two, and on the side next the river five more, which, with those planted towards the west and north, made about fifty pieces of cannon. Many of these, however, were old and ill-mounted; some of the best guns belonging to the town having shortly before been taken away for other urgent services, and several fine brass pieces lay dismounted and useless in the streets. Although there was a considerable store of provisions, a great quantity of meal, salt, and other additional supplies, was brought from the shipping in the bay. Before the movement of the army towards the town commenced, a party of horse, commanded by the famous colonel Lutterel, attempting to approach and assist the town, was met by a body of cavalry posted at Kilcolgan, and forced to retire. The Irish commanders also attempted to throw in reinforcements across the bay from the county of Clare; and upon the appearance of captain Morgan, with a party under his command, they were prevented, after a skirmish in which three or four men were killed and eight taken prisoners. These disappointments however, did not dishearten the town but rather stimulated all its exertions, and every preparation was made to defend it to the last extremity.

On the morning of the 19th July, the English forces, consisting of upwards of fourteen thousand men, chiefly infantry, marched from Athenry for Galway. The remainder of the army, consisting of three thousand horse and dragoons, was left there under the command of lieutenant-general Scravenmore and major-general Ruvigny, as well for the convenience of forage, and securing the passes for the cannon intended to be sent for to Athlone, (should the siege prove tedious,) as for observing the motion of the Irish forces. The troops advanced in two columns, with a rearguard of one hundred men to each wing, commanded by a lieutenant-colonel, and each regiment preceded by a captain, ensign, and fifty firelocks. They met with no opposition in their approach, until they arrived within view of the town, when some skirmishes took place between the advanced posts and parties of the French and Irish forces. The latter set fire to the castle Tirellan, to prevent the enemy making any use of it against the town, and retained the possession of the outworks of the castle, until they were driven from them by the repeated attacks of a superior force; after which they approached the town by the river, and burned all the suburbs beyond the north-west gate. In these recontres several of the English were killed. The Irish troops then entered the town amid loud acclamations, and the besieged manifested every intention of making the most vigorous resistance. Ginckle not expecting such immediate and determined opposition, as soon as a part of the army was drawn up as near the town as he could approach with safety, judged it prudent to summon the garrison to surrender. He offered them the benefit of the lords justices' late declaration, if they yielded without giving him any further trouble or delay; but the governor made answer, "that Monsieur D'Ussone, as well as himself, and the rest of the officers, were resolved to defend the place to the last." While the messenger remained in town, the soldiery impatient for action, discharged several shots from the cannon on the walls, which was afterwards complained of as unusual, and contrary to the rules of war, but it appeared the men were not aware of the communication. The remainder of the day was occupied in fixing the positions of the army round the town, during which the cannonading continued from the walls, though it was attended but with very little effect, in consequence of the favourable situation of the ground chosen by the besiegers. As soon as it was dark, the four regiments of colonel Tiffins, St. John, Monsieur Cambons and lord George Hamilton, with one Dutch and another Danish regiment of foot, and four squadrons of horse and dragoons, all commanded by lieutenant-general Mackay, crossed the river nearly opposite the castle of Menlo, about two miles north of the town. They were all safely over by break of day, and met with no opposition except from a party of dragoons sent to oppose their landing, which, being overpowered by superior numbers, was obliged, after a severe skirmish, to retreat. This formidable detachment (which was wafted over on floats previously constructed, but without success, to seize the only three ships that remained in the bay, and which sailed that night) occupied all the passes from Iar-Connaught, and put an end to any further hopes of succour from Balldearg O'Donnell. This disappointment was followed by another, resulting from the treachery of one Bourke, a captain in the Irish army, who deserted, before the English were many hours before the town, and informed general Ginckle that the fort towards the south-east was nearly finished; and, therefore, the sooner it was attacked, the easier it would be gained: he also added, that, from its importance, as it commanded a great part of the wall on that side of the town, its loss would considerably dispirit the besieged.
It surrenders on articles.

The next morning, July 20th, count Nassau and general Talmash, with a party of grenadiers and two regiments of foot, were conducted, by Bourke, the safest and nearest direction to attack the fort, and the troops arrived almost at the foot of the works before they were discovered. This unexpected attack, having caused considerable confusion within, the English pushed forward through some faint firings, and threw in their grenadoes, which obliged the soldiers to abandon the fort, and retire by a line of communication drawn between it and the town. - In this action the English had only a lieutenant and men killed, and but two lieutenants and eight men wounded. As soon as they entered the fort, a tremendous fire was opened on them from the walls, by which several were killed and wounded, particularly their principal engineer, who fell as he was giving orders to his men. In the meantime the west suburbs were set on fire, to prevent their being possessed by the troops that crossed the river, and the besieged still shewed in every quarter the most determined resolution of resistance. But at that moment the principal inhabitants, who were inclined to surrender, waited on the governor, and, representing the impossibility of maintaining the town against such an army, make use of every argument to persuade him to enter into a treaty. Their councils at length prevailed, and at the hour of ten o'clock he ordered a parley to be beat, and despatched a letter to the English commander, requiring safe conduct for some persons to manage a capitulation. This welcome message was gladly received by the general; a satisfactory answer was immediately returned, and a cessation accordingly proclaimed on both sides. The town's-people and soldiers crowded in great numbers to the walls, and the English troops having approached near enough to hold conversation, several inquiries passed for friends and acquaintance in each other's army. In the afternoon hostages were exchanged: those on the side of the English were lieutenant-colonel Purcell, Coote, and the marquis de Rheda and those of the town, lieutenant-colonels Lynch, Burke and Reilly. The articles not being agreed to on that day the cessation was continued until ten o'clock the following morning. In the mean time, several debates took place in the town on the terms to be obtained and given; but the hour limited having arrived before they were able to agree, Ginckle became impatient, and having ordered eight guns and four mortars to be drawn to the fort, which was taken the day before, he sent a drummer to the town to order away his hostages; and, although the besieged demanded and obtained more time to agree among themselves, his impatience was so great, that he sent once or twice to press them to a speedy conclusion. At length lieutenant-colonel Burke, one of the hostages, was permitted to go into town; and Talmash, who evinced every inclination to lay the treaty aside, and even made some cold-blooded declarations that it would be preferable to attempt the town by storm, desired that, "when they were ready to begin again, they would give a signal by firing a gun in the air"; but the other replied, "they would not fire a gun from within until they were provoked from without." In a short time after, on the 21st July, the articles were agreed to, signed and exchanged by general Ginckle, on the part of the English, and by the lords Clanricarde, Dillon and Enniskillen, on the part of the besieged. Of these articles, being sixteen in number, the principal were, that the town was to be surrendered on the following Sunday, the 26th of July. The French officers and soldiers, and such of the garrison as wished it, to be conducted to Limerick. A free pardon to be granted to all within the town, with liberty to possess their estates, real and personal, and all other liberties and immunities which they held, or ought to have held, under the acts of settlement and explanation. The clergy and laity were to be unmolested in the private exercise of their religion, and the clergy protected in their persons and goods. The gentlemen of estates belonging to the town and garrisons to carry certain arms, and the Roman Catholic lawyers of the town were to have free liberty of practice, as in the reign of Charles II.
Immediately after the articles were signed, the governor gave the earl of Clanricarde, lord Enniskillen, colonel Dominick Browne, lieutenant-colonel Bodkin and major Dillon, as hostages for the due performance of the terms to be observed, until the town should be delivered up. William Robinson, deputy paymaster of the army, was thereupon sent in to take an account of the stores, which were found to consist of eight hundred and fifty hogsheads of French meal, sixty barrels of salt, a considerable quantity of ammunition, and other articles of value. In the afternoon of the same day the English troops took possession of the outworks, and the governor dismounted the cannon on the walls. A friendly intercourse subsisted between both armies and their commanders until the time for surrendering arrived; and about seven o'clock on the morning of the 26th, general D'Ussone went out to the English camp, where he stayed about half an hour, and then proceeded with a guard to Limerick. Sir Henry Bellasyse being appointed governor of the town, marched in with his own, colonel Brewer's and colonel Herbert's regiments, and about nine o'clock took possession of the guards, and planted his sentinels on all the posts in and about the town. While the town forces were preparing to march out, a quantity of gunpowder, which a party of them was dividing in the street, suddenly exploded, by which several of the men had their eyes blown out, and upwards of twenty were dreadfully wounded and disfigured. This accident at first caused some confusion, the soldiers on each side immediately suspecting that they mutually intended to fall on one another; but, as soon as the cause was ascertained, these apprehensions ceased. About ten o'clock lord Dillon marched out with the garrison, not being above two thousand five hundred men, (who are described as indifferently armed, and worse clothed,) having according to the articles, six pieces of cannon, (four of which were of iron,) drawn by English horses. They were also conducted to Limerick by a guard of horse and dragoons, and the same day, at noon, general Ginckle entered the town, and was received by the mayor, aldermen and recorder; the latter having delivered a congratulatory speech on the occasion.
When the news of the capitulation of Galway arrived in England, it gave infinite satisfaction to the queen and ministry, and the articles were soon after ratified by their majesties. The event was perpetuated by a medal, on which is represented a bust of the king crowned with laurel, and inscribed with his usual titles. On the top of the reverse are the arms of Galway fixed against two palm branches, placed on saltire between a cap and a bible, the emblem of liberty and religion. The bottom is ornamented with two laurel branches twined together, and the area of the field filled with the following inscription:-" Galloway rebellium et Gallorum penultimum refugium, post plurimas strages Gulielmo III. magno restitutori religionis et libertatis, cim armamentariis simul ac navibus redditur. "-Galway, the last refuge but one of the rebels and the French, is, after much slaughter, surrendered, with all its magazines and ships, to the great William III. the restorer of religion and liberty."

The Battle of Aughrim - 1691
The site of this battle was Kilcommadan or Aughrim Hill - which stretches south-eastward from the ruined castle and village of Aughrim and which forms the western skyline.
Seen in retrospect, the battle of the Boyne must be regarded as decisive, but it was not the end of the war. The defeated Jacobites were still a fighting force and were still to fight stubbornly before King William could claim victory in Ireland.
The Williamite army moved forward from Athlone on 11th July 1691. The next day there was skirmishing as it came into contact with the Jacobite outposts.
Froude's account of the battle

Sunday, the I2th July, dawned thick and hazy; a damp fog lay spread over the marshes, which did not lift until in the afternoon. At half-past four, with five hours of daylight remaining, the mist blew off and the English advanced. English properly they were not. English regiments were intermixed with Danes, French Huguenots, Scots, Dutch, Brandenburghers, and Anglo-Irish Protestants, the fitter to try an issue which, however distinguished, was an episode in the long European struggle for liberty of conscience.
The battle was long doubtful. The ground was trenched in all directions, and the ditches were lined with Irish sharpshooters, who stood their ground bravely, and again and again Ginkel's columns, rushing forward to close with them, were driven back in confusion. Once St. Ruth believed the day was his own, he was heard to swear that he would hunt the Saxon into Dublin. Almost immediately after he was killed by a cannon-ball. The Hugnenot cavalry, led by Henri de Ruvigny, made a charge, behind which the English infantry rallied. At last, late in the evening, the Irish gave way, broke up, and scattered. Few or no prisoners were taken, and few were reported wounded. Those who escaped, escaped, those who were overtaken were made an end of. Seven thousand men were killed before darkness and rain ended the pursuit. The wreck of the defeated army divided; part went to Galway, part to Limerick, where the last act of the drama was to be played out.

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